This is following on from my recent post about the interview I had for a secondment opportunity in our central web team.
The short version is I didn’t get it, but it looks like I’ve got something else which may even be better, and I’m quite pleased.
I went to my interview on Wednesday morning, and did a ‘Short technical test’ (which I stormed) and then a surprisingly long interview of about 50 minutes, which seemed quite a lot for an internal post. They asked me lots of questions and I answered them all (as is traditional with conversations), and it was quite good natured and relaxed, and I came out feeling pretty good about it. I’d been really nervous beforehand, and was terrified I would balls it up and make a fool of myself, but actually once I was in the interview and talking it didn’t feel too hard at all. I did myself justice, and it was fine.
Unfortunately, that wasn’t actually enough to get me the job. One of the other applicants (whom I vaguely know) was far better qualified, with a degree in programming and loads of professional experience, and apparently although we both interviewed equally well, I was just outclassed in terms of skill. There’s nothing I can do about that really.
And I’m actually not sorry. There were aspects of the job that I was applying for which didn’t sound very nice (being hassled a lot by people, for example), and after the interview I’d kind of made up my mind that I didn’t want it. That was partly a pragmatic opinion, and partly a panicked one because I don’t deal with change very well. Either way, I would still have taken the job if offered it because I couldn’t possibly turn it down when I desperately need more development experience, more variety in my work, and when I bitch constantly about being bored. So I was kind of hoping they wouldn’t offer it to me, and was relieved when they didn’t.
However, the story does not end there. When the interviewing man came to see me to let me know the outcome (which I thought was odd, as he could have just rung me), he said unfortunately we aren’t able to offer you the job BUT we’d like to offer you something else.
In essence what he said was they really liked me, I did well at the interview and they know I’m good, and I had made them wish they had two jobs they could fill. They were also very sensitive to the reasons I gave for applying: namely that I need more opportunity to do development work (as opposed to the web editing I mostly do); that I am ready for a change after four years in my job; and that it would do me a lot of good to work with and around other web professionals instead of entirely on my own in a little office in a field.
So what they have offered to do is to buy me for two days a week from my manager so that I can go and work in the central web team on development projects, and then for the other three days I’ll do my normal job in my current office. And actually that will suit me really, really well. I’m ever so pleased. I’ll basically get to do exactly what I wanted, to gain more experience so I’m better placed for applying for jobs in the future, to improve my development skills, and to work with other web people, but I don’t have to do the hassle parts of the job I applied for, and I don’t have to leave the friends I have in my current office. And if I’m completely honest, I’ve said a number of times in the past that I could probably do my job in three days a week anyway, so my faculty won’t actually be losing anything. My manager saves money on his staff budget, I get the experience I want and a change of scene, they get extra help in the web team (they’re woefully understaffed), and I’ll be in a better position when they review how we support our websites in a year or two’s time to make sure I can slot into any new roles they create and not find myself redundant. It’s pretty much a win all round. I suppose technically yes I’ll be working harder for the same money, but that basically means I’ll deserve my money because at the moment I’m paid a lot for doing not very much.
So I’m pleased, and I hope nothing happens to scupper it. With a bit of luck I’ll be able to start in my new half-role in January. Multi-yay.