Should I go down a grade at work?

(19 Posts)
Undervaluedandsad Fri 03-Jan-20 08:45:15

I have worked for the NHS for over 20 years and I’m currently protected at the top end of band 7. I hate my job and have been looking for something new for a long time. There are very few opportunities out there. There is one job I’m interested in a related field but at a grade lower. If I got this I would need to work at this grade for at least a year before applying for band 7 posts. It would take me approximately 10 years to get back to where I am now.

The job would make me happier. The financial hit may not.

It would be helpful to hear from others who have taken a backwards step in their career but ultimately felt happier?

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Lougle Fri 03-Jan-20 08:48:49

I would do it in a heart beat if you can take the financial hit. Money isn't everything. I'm just applying for a job that's not far over minimum wage, but it should keep my registration, is in my home village so no commute and hopefully in school hours.

Undervaluedandsad Fri 03-Jan-20 09:03:06

I’ll have to increase my hours to avoid a financial hit. I think I would be happier in work and therefore happier at home but also potentially resentful in the future as I will have to work my way up again and most likely require to be full time.

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Enterthewolves Fri 03-Jan-20 09:06:58

I did this; dropped two grades and had to go full time to deal with the financial impact. I have a very supportive partner and work close to home/children’s school so it worked. I am now three years later, back on the same grade (but on a temp six month contract) and am much much happier.

Undervaluedandsad Fri 03-Jan-20 09:32:32

That’s really helpful to hear Wolves.

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pinkprosseco Sat 11-Jan-20 18:18:31

I'm about to do this and take quite a big drop but I'm hoping in return for being much happier and regaining my motivation. I guess it's all about balance and what you can afford but I see happiness as worth the pay drop

loriat Sat 11-Jan-20 18:24:33

I took a pay drop in order to change jobs. We can afford the pay cut and I'm now in a job I like with colleagues that I love. I'm so much happier. It was worth it for me, if you can afford it go for it!

Feelingabitashamed Sat 11-Jan-20 19:18:13

I don't really know the NHS band system but if there is a clear path to proceed in the new department, even if it will take a while, then yes. Do it. Life is too short to stick in a job you hate, particularly if there are other areas you want to pursue.

Could you look into whether there is any quicker way to return to your current pay given your past experience or does it not work like that at all?

dun1urkin Sat 11-Jan-20 19:24:17

My DH has done this, has had two B7 jobs, and on the surface (and from his employer’s POV) he’s been great at them.
However the toll it took on his mental health was not worth the money.
He applied for a B6 role, in the same organisation, and got it. He was honest about why and was respected for his choice.

BikeRunSki Sat 11-Jan-20 19:25:40

I’ve done it - large public sector organisation. We could handed the financial hit, which was far outweighed by doing a job I engaged and interested in, and a better work/life balance. 8 years on I’m beginning to look at higher grade jobs again, but I have never regretted my “downgrade”.

dun1urkin Sat 11-Jan-20 19:25:43

I should add his mental health has been much better since. It has been well worth the drop in income, for both of us.

OneKeyAtATime Sat 11-Jan-20 19:33:50

I have done it before (not NHS ) and never regretted it.

daisychain01 Sat 11-Jan-20 21:04:02

A dear former colleague of mine took a grade drop to get away from a toxic team and it has done him the world of good. It instantly got rid of an otherwise damaging situation and he is so good at his job he will be back up again within the next year so it has hardly impacted on him financially but he looks years younger!

Fr0g Sun 12-Jan-20 02:36:41

did this last year, also reduced hours to part time - much happier.
because I pay so much less tax and NI, the financial hit isn't as big as you'd think.
Listen to Taxman is an excellent site for calculating net pay from changing gross salary.

Undervaluedandsad Sun 12-Jan-20 21:49:16

These are all great stories to hear.

I’ve applied for the full time role. Still feeling somewhat apprehensive about a career change and increasing to full time hours...but something needs to change, I’ve been unhappy for a long time and it’s impacting on my family life and my health.

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Undervaluedandsad Sun 12-Jan-20 21:53:19

Feelingabit- I think I will have to work through the grades again. I would go in at the top of a band 6 initially but if I later applied for a band 7 I would have to work my way back up again, which is galling.

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newreality1 Sun 12-Jan-20 21:54:49

Think you are absolutely doing the right thing. Well done on taking the leap now before things get worse. I did the same thing. My only regret is that I didn't do it years ago.

scrambledeggs01 Mon 13-Jan-20 08:53:18

Would you have any experience in the B6 role as I know quite a few people who have moved roles and negotiated a different start point so you may be able to go in at the top of the B6. I myself started as a band 7 and was put on to the pay scale at the mid point due to my experience

Undervaluedandsad Mon 13-Jan-20 13:23:03

I would hope to go in at the top of band 6. It’s the next step after that which would see me go to the bottom of band 7.

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