There has been quite a lot of press about the 'great resignation,' with employees leaving jobs in droves. This is likely hyperbole, but it does seem that there are a large number of people switching jobs.
If that is something you have done or are considering doing in the near future, why?
The shift is forcing company's to compete with compensation and benefits for labor and talent. I don't think the great resignation is hyperbole at all. The illusion of not being able to work remote or the company crumbles got shattered. Lots of folks finally retired, lots changed jobs and will do so again.Reply
just couldn't go through another agile danceReply
How do you all find time to practice interviewing while having a job? After work I'm kind of burnt out. I guess I can just do it during work since I plan on leaving.Reply
Illness - Long CovidReply
I think the recruitment industry themselves kicked off the whole "great resignation".
By promoting the idea that employees are going to resign, it forces employers to quickly get into "recruitment mode" - as we all know, recruitment takes time (and money). Better be prepared!
Since there is now an abundance of job adverts, and hype, employees who previously were _not_ thinking about changing roles are now considering it.
Employees get higher wages and the recruitment industry gets a boost.Reply
I didn't hate my old job or find the pay inadequate, but I had always thought about seeking out something else since I was losing interest and wanted to learn something new. Working from home just made it far easier for me to take the initial steps to start looking. I also had more time to look for openings and my schedule was much more flexible for interviews thanks to WFH.Reply
I joined a startup a decade ago which was great and taught me a lot in the early years. I stayed all that time though because of options. Made a bit from them, took some time off for personal study/projects, and eventually moved to a bigger company to start learning something outside the small technological bubble I'd been working in until then. I don't know if I made wrong decisions but I feel a bit bad about it because I love having highly skilled colleagues, learning new technology and how things are done by teams that do them well, and I think I could have got to a significantly more technically advanced position than I am now by not staying so long at the first place.Reply
I love people, and I love the people I work with.
But 40 hours a week is too much for me to be around other people.Reply
I recently left a “good steady pay, low learning, low growth” company for a “risky pay, tons of learning, high growth” company.
I think COVID exacerbated winners and losers. The gaps between companies offering opportunity and stale companies is growing. People won’t stay at a company that rewards 2 years of heads down pandemic work with “Due to current conditions, we can’t fund bonuses. Raises will be less than inflation, and we can only promote people when their boss leaves.”Reply
I'm a bit late to the party, but since the pandemic, microsoft teams has been my office, and at the end of each day, to make sure no one will call me, or hear some thing on the microphone, I have to exit teams. On windows, this means selecting 'quit'. And I think to myself, yes, maybe I should....Reply
I changed jobs this summer. Went from a remote position at excellent Eastern European company with a good Eaten European salary to a remote position at even better american company with a good american salary, x4 bump. And I was choosing between several very similar offers, too.
A lot of people here are saying that compensation isn't that important, but you clearly haven't had your income increase 4 times when you're already 14 years in your career.Reply
I have enough money to be comfortable and even mid six figures isn't enough money to justify renting out my brain and creative energy full time toward solving someone else's problems.
If companies want experienced SWEs like me, you need to offer very part time positions. My maximum commitment is 3 days/week.Reply
Before the pandemic started I would have quit my job if they didn't let me/us work 100% remote. But they changed the policy, and I'm now happily living in Michigan (rather than New Jersey). Went from 1hr+ commute each way to 1min "commute" with loads of benefits.
I'll never work in an office again - 100% remote or bust.Reply
I've wanted to leave my job for years, haven't found anything to replace it though. My discontent is with the company culture moving from self hosted open software and standards (and no JS requirement) to proprietary SaaS that requires JS. From XMPP to Discord. From self hosted trac to GitLab EE. OTOH I've been able to increase the amount of open source I work on and decrease working on the proprietary internal components.Reply
Retirement as an option would be nice.Reply
> it does seem that there are a large number of people switching jobs.
Some of the attrition was deferred because they would have left in 2020, but decided to wait.Reply
(voted "other") I left my job in September due to burnout. In turn, that was due to being too invested in wanting to do good work, at a company that just didn't function at a basic level and thwarted my efforts at every turn. AND having this be the third similarly disastrous company I worked in within a 2-year span.
I took 4 months off and will be starting a new job in a couple weeks at a company that appears to be well-run and staffed with smart people. Also for significantly more money, but that's just icing.Reply
2009-2019 I worked for a multi-billion dollar company as 1 of 2 DevOps Admins for their on-prem web hosting where we took the IaaS coming from the companies private data-center and added/managed the rest of the layers to offer PaaS/SaaS web-hosting solutions for all of the companies departments. The income was great but the life balance and respect from coworkers was awful. In 2018 the company restructured and began mass layoffs because some 3rd party consultants told them it would be good for the ledger. My internal team was shredded and the handful of web development staff we had were all promptly dismissed with the exception of the 2 admins and our direct report. Thousands of web-app instances previously supported by a team of 10 where now just 2 people's responsibility 24/7/365.
I quit and moved to the opposite side of the country for a change of pace at the end of 2019 then took a Help Desk job at a fraction of the pay. Unfortunately I was laid off from the new Help Desk job just a few months later as the pandemic closed down smaller retail shops.
Despite my decade of experience and constantly applying to remote positions throughout 2020-2021 I literally received 1 interview but declined their offer because of too many red flags during the interview conversation (remote work not actually remote, duties well outside my experience, major deadlines within the 1st week which made it seem like they were just looking for a scapegoat to blame some major management failures on).
I was unemployed and without income for nearly 2 years with the exception of a few months and a few hundred bucks from the Help Desk job until my life was literally saved by better-late-than-never Pandemic Unemployment Assistance. I used the money from that PUA to move my family back across the country.
Reconnecting with an old co-worker from the previous corporate job gave me a lead on an actual fully-remote position with a different local company and I started working for them just last month. My new salary is a 40% cut from what I was making in 2019 but the work-life balance actually exists and I am not being forced to wear "all the hats all the time."
I see (toxic) company culture, work/life balance, and flexibility all as major factors in my journey to where I am now but holy-fuck have I had a difficult few years to get here.Reply
Please add Vaccine mandate. I took one shot because of my autoimmune health condition and the employer insisted I take 4 more. I personally know 5 friends and family members who quit their jobs because of this.Reply
There's a missing option. "People join a company, but leave a manager".Reply
While I completely agree that change is good, and flexibility, company culture and life balance are incredibly important, the reason I left my job in October was compensation.
I started at that project as a freelancer, but the client had a hard rule that they couldn't hire freelancers for more than two years (because the tax service might consider them employees instead), and after two years I wasn't ready to leave, so I became an employee. I knew I had to take a pay cut for that, but the pay cut turned out to be much, much larger tan I expected. That simply made it a temporary thing. I don't regret continuing that project for another year, and I did try to negotiate better salary that might allow me to stay longer, but when that turned out to be impossible, I left.
I'm freelancing again.Reply
"life balance" is the most polite way to say I was worked to the bone, got fat and depressed, and the only way out was to outright quit and not work for a few months. Thankfully having some savings allowed me to do soReply
Climate change, the end is near. Why spend the rest of your (short) life working for some micromanaging slave-driver.Reply
Someone should make a thread asking the opposite question: Why are people staying at their jobs?Reply
Other: Ethics. I left my job because it was directly related to a very polluting industry and I ended realizing that I was not ok with it.
It was hard because the people were amazing. Really the nicest people I have ever worked with.
But in the end, I don't regret it.Reply
This poll lacks a “my job makes me miserable and a bad spouse/parent”.Reply
is this in the tech industry or the economy as a whole? people in the service industry are leaving because it's even more miserable during a pandemicReply
Wish I had seen this thread earlier, as this will get burried now. Oh well, here it goes: I am seriously considering leaving my current position as a lead developer because I am basically taking on the role and tasking of SCRUM master, architect, build engineer, DB admin, UI/UX consultant, technical writer, and not to mention - developer! I often find myself writing unit tests until 11 or 12 because I am stuck in meetings all day, writing requirements, coordinating with other teams, pairing with and mentoring junior devs, and haven’t had a chance to write any of the code I had committed to for the sprint. Sure, I can delegate, but a majority of the team can’t do UI, and no one, not even our PhD-level PO can write requirements in proper English that make sense, so I have basically taken this over as well. Everyone else seems to simply attend meetings and play-act their roles, leaving myself and 2 or 3 of the other senior devs to do 90% of the work (or re-work), all while leadership hounds us to over-commit every sprint and yell at us when we carry over tickets. While I am paid decently, it’s maddening and I am experiencing true burnout. I feel like I could probably work for Amazon and do the exact same work for $700k. Ok, I’m probably not smart enough for Amazon, but I am hoping that I can find a less stressful project for better compensation.
Icing on the cake: my company drastically changed our benefits this year such that our medical copays are double and our deductibles are far higher, so I am effectively taking a cut. Our team was also promised a retention bonus if we remain with the company during the recent re-compete but none of us have seen said bonus for nearly 8 months now and management explains it away as being due to the fact that we’re on a “bridge” contract.Reply
I changed mainly because my manager was an assholeReply
Money and opportunity. I'll be leaving for 50% more pay and a company that's 1000x bigger than anything I could find locally. That means room for growth, knowledge, the ability to work in different areas and with more technology, and the ability to learn from the best in the industry.
The worst part, is also the part that enables this, it is a 100% remote position. Having multiple small children at home can be a challenge (even there is a sitter), as well as spouse that mostly works from home.Reply
I'll be departing my job at the end of the month. I had too many roles, affecting too many pieces of engineering, and my title didn't reflect my work. I needed to go down to a 4 day work week and have my title reflect my roles, but my manager attempted to call my bluff and essentially said it's not going to happen. I hinted about what my decision would have to be if these accomodations couldn't be made, but he didn't budge. When I gave my verbal notice, suddenly there was immediate backpedaling and said maybe something could be worked out. I declined because I don't negotiate like that. If you mismanage a negotiation, there is no do-overs just because you overplayed your hand. The trust is broken.Reply
Missing answer: burn outReply
There are two questions at the core of this: "What made you look" and "What made you leave". They can have the same answers but this isn't a great poll IMO.Reply
Not sure if these count as company culture but: Frequent hiring freezes, blown out projects that never make progress, IT support outsourced to SEA where tickets that took hours before take days instead, upper management more focused on making new acquisitions rather than integrating existing business units, and so on.Reply
A mix of a few things really:
- All the coworkers who I was more friendly with left the team/company and now I've been feeling completely detached from the team.
- the stock run-up has provided me with a (false?) sense of more financial independence.
- a handful of life crisis with a dash of imposter syndrome. Zero idea what I want to be doing with my life but being stuck as low level IC for a long time is hurting my already depleted ego - can't seem to avoid the pitfall of comparing myself to others.
All in all, just feels like I need a break and that it's probably time for some changes.Reply
Feels like half the team left already, and they've yet to replace anyone, so work gets dumped on us. No real commitment to remote work, let alone mask policy. Won't or can't get rid of unproductive folks. Just doesn't feel like a good place to write software.
I expect it's a story not too uncommon at this point.Reply
Why? Because people can. They either have enough opportunities with flexible work arrangements that are too hard to resist, or they have either enough savings to bridge periods of unemployment, or certain jobs started paying more.
All of these issues are interesting to dive into. The first one will lead with the society accelerating the switch to a highly digital life (think metaverse). A lot of the existing business infrastructure will go out of business when that happens, and a lot of the new infrastructure will be built to support the new lifestyle. My guess is that this will benefit the FAANG + unicorns and will hurt the SMBs.
The second one I find difficult to wrap my head around. I had no idea that someone working as a waiter has enough savings to just quit their job without moving back in with their parents - it certainly was not true for me back in the day. Perhaps that's what people are doing - moving in with their parents for the benefit of not exposing themselves to health risks? Fair enough if that's what's happening, but somehow I doubt it. The other option is that everyone just switched from one type of a low-skill career to another with less exposure (eg: hospitality to remote customer support) - except that everyone is running their call centers at low capacity these days, so what gives?
The last one is the strangest of them all. Where is the money for those extra wages coming from? Surely, there are a verticals here and there with fat margins that can easily pay more and remain profitable, but the efficient market theory would make you believe that this wouldn't be possible across all industries. And yet, the results of this survey indicate that compensation is the main driver for most people on HN. My only explanation is that the HN audience is primarily in the digital space, which as a whole has benefited from the pandemic and can pay more.Reply
Early employee at Unicorn startup here. Leaving because of bad pay, opaque management and lack of stock refreshers. They even screwed over esops by not allowing people to exercise their vested stocks until very recently. Couple that with insane workload and I'm just too burnt out. So are most of the early team. Stayed this long because of sunk cost fallacy. But it's time now :(Reply
I can find myself saying yes to all of these with my most recent move. I think Compensation in many cases is a canary for other issues. If I don't like the company culture, life balance, product I am working on, etc. I may do that for enough compensation. If the compensation stops being worth it you move.Reply
I left about 7-8 years ago, depending on how you count.
I gradually came to the realization that I'd rather be a pauper and writing software as an art/passion than making six figures writing whatever kind of software I got paid to write.
I chose "other" in this poll.Reply
because people became millionaires trading CUMROCKET and TeslaReply
My previous organization has been totally emptied out during the Great Quittening. All of us left for various reasons, including mismanagement, and the eminent impossibility of pay raises that kept up with the hot market + inflation. I was fielding offers at 20% past my previous base salary, plus MASSIVE equity upside, at a much more exciting company. I feel bad for any engineering leaders attempting to retain people right now.Reply
I got a new manager in Q1 2021 and she was super toxic. She was a terrible communicator and made me feel so bad about myself. Nothing was ever good enough. I never sent her something and received a "This looks great. Good job" - Everything was nitpicked. Why put forth effort when she will just tear down anything I create and tell me to rebuild it? Mind you, I am aware when I make mistakes, but the final straw was when I went above and beyond, did a super great job creating some documentation for her, and excitedly sent it to her thinking "She's gonna love this! I killed it!". She sent me back a huge wall of text essentially telling me to redo it (with a ton of comments added to the original MS Word document).
I resigned in December with no new job lined up. I got tired of crying before my biweekly '1 on 1' meetings with her. It's crazy because before she came, I was doing great. Our previous manager was excellent. She was run off by a toxic co-worker in my department who was the most experienced (He would make her life a living hell through small bits of periodic sabotage).
This was my first job out of college (Information Security Analyst). The work I was doing was extremely tedious and didn't require any skill whatsoever - It was basically data entry & sending emails. I understand that the newbies have to earn their stripes, but I was approaching 2 years with this company, and I felt like I was crippling myself as each day passed. Shouldn't I have been performing risk assessments and reviews, and LEARNING? I have to grow so I can support the company, right?
The rest of my team (with more seniority) were working on projects with a lot of depth. Meanwhile, I'm sending emails to people for 30 hours per week (access reviews performed manually by sending hand crafted AD group reports for a company with 3,000 employees...). My technical skills (Networking, Linux/UNIX, Cybersecurity) were starting to atrophy due to lack of use. The company I worked at payed EXTREMELY WELL, but I looked to the future and didn't like the idea of being handcuffed to this one company due to my lack of growth.
I also believe one of my co-workers was trying to sabotage my work. He would feed me bad information (at critical moments) which would completely derail my project down the line eventually (despite him specializing in his role for 20 years) - I sometimes wonder if he was threatened by me (or maybe I'm just full of myself?).
Either way, it was a great experience for a while. But then it was awful.Reply
Rather than look for another job I retired at 63.5. My job was long hours, high stress, high visibility, continuous deadlines and changes that never ended at a large non FAANG company. Compensation was OK (not FAANG but OK for where I am). Everything I or my team shipped worked great; but lots of things with these challenges never shipped for political/idiotic reasons. So much budget was wasted on Exec whims and fantasy. I just grew tired of the frustration. If I were younger I would have left and gone to the local competition or even moved somewhere. But enough was enough after almost 6 years here.
I still write code but now its just for me to support my generative art. I still hear stories from my former team; not missing the nightmare at all.Reply
I'm switching from a FTE position to a 3 days/week contractor role. Mostly because it allows me to work on my startup, but also because the contract work is for a very interesting high-profile startup.Reply
I am glad most of us agree change is not good!Reply
How about “what I am doing isn’t what I believe the world needs right now”Reply
Ten years at the company I joined after college. I loved it, but faltered in the last year in a new role and environment that was different. With covid and all the nostalgia of the campus gone, I got a cold call offering a job with a large pay bump in my prior field of expertise. No brainer.
Change is good.Reply
My old boss Eric Carlsen used to say, nobody left because of money.
They may get more money if they change jobs. But they start looking because they're unhappy. So when somebody asked for more money, he'd start by asking what was bothering them.Reply
I jumped from a small startup to a larger company in 2021 because I was getting bored with the work after a few years and felt that I had stopped growing. I needed a new challenge, and I have some goals that I recognized moving to a larger company would help me grow to achieve. I also wanted to be paid more because the amount of time and work I put in the compensation wasn't competitive. At the much larger company there are many learning programs available to me, stock with value, and more compensation.
I did enjoy wearing many hats and carrying a lot of responsibility for a while, but the pay wasn't worth the stress. I'd like to revisit working at a startup again some day, maybe after I've reached more of my professional goals and bring more value to a company than just code.Reply
Flexibility (remote) was the primary motivating factor, but compensation was a pretty close second as I ended up with a ~50% increase. I wouldn't say that was down to the market, though, I was very underpaid relative to my positions average (I'm now slightly below average), which really came down to difficulty I've always had in valuing my work and my abilities.
I'm sad that it took a pandemic to take stock in my life, and I certainly don't think the family members I've lost were worth anything I may gain, but I'm glad to be where I'm at helping to push us ever forward.Reply
Good thing you can vote for more than one.
I doubled my salary, got to work from home and got to work on a really interesting project. This last year has been really good for me!Reply
Mismanagement would be good option.
I decided to open my own company just because there is a horrendous management culture in the North America.
Last company I had worked about three years ago had a really bad management culture where managers were total talentless pricks. Now, that might be okay if compensation was crazy high but company also had below average industry wages.
I also figured out that you can pay people really low wages so long as you act decent towards them. I don’t have real employees at the moment but I got some contractors. I pay them insanely low wages, but I frequently praise them and thank for their work. So far I got really good results with this arrangement.Reply
The reason is that employers are not communicating with each other, competing effectively. Instead of granting raises, they would rather see someone quit, then gradually (or not gradually) raise their offerings and train a new person. It makes no sense because they still have to pay a higher salary and now they have to train someone, but that’s corporate America for you.Reply
You've missed the big reason! Impact.
I wanted to make a bigger impact on the world.Reply
its probably because they are being fired for not succumbing to the government edict to get vaccinatedReply
I left my last job partly because my role didn't match my responsibilities or my compensation, and they played games with a promotion. That wasn't a dealbreaker all on its own, the other part was that I was bored and nothing I was working on or leading really felt like it was worth it, it was just work for the sake of work.
To be honest, as soon as I realised that I was mentally checked out, the writing was on the wall. Neither a pay rise or a promotion would have kept me there for much longer because I would still have been carrying the legacy around with me.
There was no counter offer when I resigned. I suppose I'm grateful that we skipped the bullshit there.Reply
i am trying to do the opposite, which in my case is get my first tech position. it is interesting to see the different reasons why people want to switch jobs.Reply
Dad at home.Reply
After roughly 7 hours, comp is in first place and has more votes than 2 and 3 combined.Reply
I quit my job to move into web3.
edit: I don't know why I'm getting downvoted, but I can guarantee you I'm not the only one.Reply
(Throwaway for obvious reasons)
The market's been extremely hot the past 10 years. Anyone making a good tech salary and investing has done extremely well. I have enough to never work again. I didn't want to leave my team, but at some point your portfolio fluctuates every day by more than your salary and you have to ask yourself what's the point?Reply
Left about 6 months ago, and was basically shocked at the compensation bump I got. As someone full time remote since 2017, working at the latest place since 2018, it felt like a new world looking for a job in 2021. So many more options, which basically makes it a job-seekers market.
But while the compensation bump is nice, the thing that got me seeking was the company itself. After an acquisition by VMWare, I watched it deteriorate over a year or two. To make anything happen, you had to basically go into "hero mode" working tons of hours, etc. And then you'd see pretty incompetent managers, the kind that treat engineers like cogs, continue to get promoted. Oh, and add no real clear direction on the products themselves.
So I guess that's "company culture"? I think there's a lot of people in this bucket, where "too much stupid at the current place" plus "lots of opportunity" means it's time to look around.Reply
If you're a dragon slayer for-hire, you go where the dragons are.Reply
I have been with my employer for 10 years. I had several managers come and go. I go to work because I enjoy my job. My managers know my dedication and hard work. I once challenged my manager to fire me. They ended up getting fired. the only reason I would leave is for a better company. I havn't yet come across one.Reply
1. Mediocre leadership. Hands down the biggest reason.Reply
Actually I just started a new job, and it's been a nearly two months now and I'm really not sure if I want to continue working their or not.
I've tried to give it a chance and thinking, "Oh, it's just different to my last place".
My new place is very heavy on the time metrics, which I think is the reason for me not feeling it.
I'd worked on smaller tickets for a couple of sprints, and then this sprint was happy that they gave me a bigger ticket to sink my teeth into. However, as soon as they assigned it me, I was told this is 'sprint goal' ticket and it really needed to be finished. I was like, "I would love to take the ticket as I'll get to grips with things a lot faster working on this stuff but it's important to get done then maybe I'm not the best bet".
So I talk to senior, get ideas on implementation and go ahead. Everything takes longer as I like to know what I'm working with. I get it working, but start to hit issues that make it feel like I'm not going about it correctly. Get told to do it another way, so did that but as I just dived into it due to time pressure, got a bit stuck and asked the senior for assistance. He's always busy so didn't get back to me, and when I logged on this morning, he'd linked a branch where he'd basically done all the work for me.
I appreciated his help, thanked him and wrote some more tests for the branch and did the testing. It did make me feel like a complete failure though..
Worst thing is, his code was so obvious that I'm kicking myself for not slowing down and thinking about it but the time pressure was getting to me I guess.
Well, long text but did feel good to write that down :) Focus on improving for the future.Reply
I just started a new job. The CEO of my previous employer decided to do a surprise reorganization which involved firing the entire management chain above me. My new manager after the reorg asked me on the first day “so, what do you do here?”. I’d been working there for 9 years so I didn’t take that as a good sign.
My new job is fully remote, has very interesting work, and my compensation almost doubled.
I have already referred 4 of my previous colleagues to my current company.Reply
I went back to staff engineer after trying to make it as a teacher.
Teaching is not a dynamic career, at least not for me, the one full time CS teacher at the small school I was at. There’s a little more data to it though: based on the attitudes of a large enough minority of staff and majority of leadership, it wasn’t a career where one could take risks and reap rewards. Not with the amount of social capital I brought to the role, at least.
I had hoped that as a CS teacher with a huge amount of industry background I would be able to make an impact outside of my classes. The quality of the school’s IT meant that, with the right leadership, the IT team should have been crying for out something new. They certainly had the funding for it — external funding from a high net worth parent — but the will to do something novel and interesting just wasn’t there. In the end I was kept at arms length from any of the new hotness projects, which themselves were very staid and notable only in that they made enormous spends on high value equipment rather than doing anything valuable with people — the staff and pupils.
One or two individuals attached to those projects should hopefully still be able to make an impact, despite the lethargy of the old guard wanting their thumbs in the pie and their unending ability to extinguish any dynamism.
(Procurement of new hardware, for example, had to be signed off on by IT. They were the blockers to one very cool new piece of hardware but they weren’t incentivised to do anything other than get everyone to agree they were the gatekeepers. They weren’t incentivised to open the actual gates at any kind of speed.)
I’m much happier back in industry. The true joy of tech is that the business’s primary asset is the codebase, the diffs to the codebase, and the engineers driving them. We can gather around the machine and tangibly make it better through generating intellectual property using our keyboards.
With teaching, the main way of making any kind of progress like that was in the classroom. By its very nature, that is lonely work. You teach solo. You mark solo. There’s no collaboration at all with peers and 80% of the job ends up being behaviour management rather than content creation and delivery.
Interestingly, the most peer collaboration I did as a teacher — which as I said, wasn’t very much — was very much about behaviour management of the kids. That part was cool, but it’s nothing compared to churning out diffs and, moreover, collaborating with other devs to encourage and develop them to churn out their own impactful diffs.
When I put it like that, I guess I’m still a teacher but now I get paid 10x for doing it with young adults instead of old kids. (By which I mean both the high school pupils and the handful of childishly petty staff who sullied my experience.)Reply
Return to company I left 15 years ago because they didn't use a particular software I'm in love with (Houdini). Now they do AND I can work remote. I'm in!Reply
IMO the reason compensation is so high is not that everyone is really greedy or money-focused
There's a lot of pressure to make more now days because of big student loans, skyrocketing housing prices, inflation
It feels like you need to switch jobs just to keep up now daysReply
I work at a large bank in the UK with around 25k employees. I joined in November. i'm leaving because upper management like to dictate to the engineers what tooling we should use for our CICD platform.Reply
Something that I have observed anecdotally is the pandemic increased employee turnover and that turnover coupled with feet dragging to replace open vacancies created more turnover at many companies.
When the pandemic first hit there was a resolve: "We will chip in and all do extra and help the company get through this." That works for awhile, like how crunch works on a short term basis, but only if it is short term. However, when months turn to years and people find themselves doing their job and the job of their colleagues who left for higher pay over a year ago and the company that they put so much into when the company was in need now seems content to not rehire or promote it causes frustration, burnout, and eventually even more more turnover.
So, yes, pay. But also what that pay represents. A company, especially a corporation in a capitalist society only speaks one language and that is the language of money. If the company underpays an employee based on their market value what that company is signaling is that they do not respect the employee.Reply
I am looking to leave soon to increase how challenging my work is and gain new skills. Honestly intended to leave my current role 8 months ago, but my leadership suffered a huge wave of departures and I didn't want to leave my employer out to dry with no Director level leadership. Since then I had the opportunity to hire 11 new team members in the "new-normal" era of remote hiring, which I feel has increased my skills even further.
Also our new company culture (we were acquired) is one of using a lot of contractor resources to quickly build something, and throw it over the wall to our permanent staff, its just not healthy for the team long term.
I favor iterative approaches that are tightly coupled to customer feedback. Compared to our current rapid build outs with long feedback cycles.Reply
My last job was a dead end: small software group which had survived many mergers and lived inside a mining/valve manufacturer. The only interest upper-level management had in our group was cutting costs. This caused a lot of dysfunction in our group, which lead to stagnation of the product and any learning/challenges. Plus I was underpaid.
A buddy had approached me a year or so prior to quitting with an idea and we developed and won an SBIR grant from NASA which ran the second half of 2021. The results weren't quite strong enough for commercialization, in my opinion. So I will be on the market in a month after more studying.Reply
Wish you would have clarified whether people should vote for only the most pressing (primary) one or more than one if several are factors.Reply
Company vax mandate was enough of a shove to go interview (after 8.5 years with the same team since graduating). By the time my exemption was approved, I had offers for more money, and ended up taking one at a MANGA company for 225% of prior TC.Reply
Silo'd small 4-discipline feature teams that put too much stress on managers with 4 individual bottlenecks.
The same-discipline engineers across the org don't talk to each other anymore. And I feel like I'm the only manager who is attempting to improve this over last 6 months. I'm just tired of the stress. I need to go be an IC for a little bit.Reply
I wonder how much compensation is working as a proxy for appreciation, in this poll. That's to say, if your company really valued your contributions and made that apparent (but couldn't match a higher offer), would you still leave?
Company culture as the #2 answer seems to add weight to this...
To be clear, there's no better way to value your employees than pay them well. But I think people's motivations here are driven by more than just $$$.Reply
Resigned some time ago from my last job.
I’d much prefer a comfortable salary and working 3 days per week than more salary than I need and working 5 days a week, and I definitely want to keep those extra days to work on my own interests.Reply
Monitoring Startup got bought. New owner has no intentions of keeping the wheels spinning. Brain drain follows. :shrug:Reply
Personally, it was more about company culture and flexibility. But unfortunately, many firms have not moved on from the legacy view of the worker. Although, from my perspective, it is the most significant driver for the mass exudes we are seeing, it doesn't all seem to be about money. But, for the most part, it sure as hell is critical to pay people what they are worth.Reply
I'm leaving because I'm not a fan of our tech stack, thought it would be fun. I was wrong. Going back to mobile (Android), I also just miss it.Reply
left my job the first fall of the pandemic, no new job in hand, because CTO and I had disagreements over tech and he did not trust my technical decisions for stupid reasons (I think he wanted control and could not handle giving it up, which you have to figure out how to do in a growing startup). Found a new job pretty quickly, been there for a year and change. Love the new job, but I might make a jump because I am being courted by a company that will maybe make possible a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity - making the transition from coder to astronaut.Reply
I'm tempted to leave because of how employees are graded.
Management must shoehorn their reports into these percentages.
Even if you have a team of high performers, HR expects someone to be graded as LE, which means likely put on a PIP and at risk for termination.
It's frankly disgusting to treat people this way.Reply
I always, always quit bosses.Reply
i'm leaving goldman after 12 years next week after our yearly compensation discussion. i started right after the crash (and one of their best years), i loved the culture out the gate. i am in the tech, often called strats, apparatus that straddles trading and technology. it's been a great place to be as the perceived "value add" against the exodus of voice traders.
but the culture has changed. we can't land the best and the brightest anymore. our tech stack is antiquated and arguably the company's biggest risk. we work long hours, and it somehow was able to get worse during this pandemic. the new mgmt has made comp allocations to the trading side of the business an after thought; a cost cut. little to no innovation or investment is flowing to this side. and they want us back in our seats, back on the trading floor, two feet from our overworked and diseased co-workers as soon as it's politically viable.
above all i (and many of my colleagues) have been promised for several of these years that compensation and work/life would improve. That "the firm's performance was soft" or "the division didn't get the allocation expected" or "this year was a challenging environment" but always "next year is looking much better." they've traded on their name. it used to mean something to be hired and work for goldman sachs. that means so much less now. they've made a point to say that compensation will be good this year, but, whatever it is, it won't be enough. it's not the money; at least, not all of it. i feel i've been fooled for many of my 12 years into thinking things will change. we've now been through a pandemic. we've watched out friends and families get sick or die, and the lockdowns and time at home have finally changed our perspectives on what really matters.
so, next week, i am going to take whatever it is they give me, and kindly submit my resignation. i'll be taking time to be with my friends and family, some of whom are terminally ill, and to plot my next move. i look forward to enjoying my work, respecting my managers and colleagues again, but it will be when i am ready. maybe a month from now, maybe a year.Reply
Its the money. Everything else is just icing on top. My place just concluded its annual survey and from the fall out its clear that nobody gives a damn about the culture, or the environment or any other corp-speak terms, talk is cheap. They care about money and everyone thinks they are undercompensated. We also have poor retention in general and the general feeling is that its due to pay.Reply
I quit my job, and am on garden leave although I don't tell people or recruiters because I feel that will diminish my chances to get another one.
The truth is, I have enough money in crypto to live off for a long time If I wanted to, but I do want a job where I can be effective and build another company up as I have done many times; though I am feeling increasingly like ageism is becoming my enemy (although I transitioned to management years ago, which I felt would protect me)
We'll see what happens, I definitely don't want to go back to an office like my former job was trying to force me to.Reply
Previous company went through a fairly disastrous change in management. I was the 5th person out the door on a team of 8. New manager was super "data driven" so productivity plummeted as we were inundated with piles of new processes - a 3 day lab test (no additional cost other than my labor) took me over 6 weeks to get management approval and sign offs for. But, we didn't have any "old data" (because the processes were all new) to prove that things had gotten much worse.
Wife has commented many times on the change in my personality, as I'm not ending most days furious and miserable.
Guess that's "Company Culture" for purposes of the poll.Reply
All the productive people have already left.Reply
Someone once told me that people don't leave companies. They leave managers. I have found this to be true so far.Reply
Why are people leaving their jobs?... for the same reason the 1% is increasing wealth at compounding rates and the 99% have had stagnant wages for decades. (accounting for inflation in housing, healthcare and education)Reply
1. Wife is retiring at same time. Physically beating on her (commercial kitchen). 2. Was recruited by HW company. Hiring mgr quit without notice, so I spent 3 months looking for stuff to do. No KPIs, feedback or direction. 3. Thanks to covid, we haven't gone out for 18+ months. Saved 85% of salary, so we can have pretty cheap ObamaCare coverage next year by living off savings.Reply
I've bounced between engineering lead and engineering manager for most of my career. I was an engineering manager (internal IP) at a MSP that got acquired early in the pandemic, and chose to move to another (better-reputation) consultancy that got acquired by the same large multinational in 2019, but didn't get rebadged instantly. I enjoyed being an IC for a year, and managed to grow an account from 0 to 20+ staff in that time, got "promoted" back to management again - found that the company was in complete limbo due to an as-yet-unannounced fold-in to "megacorp" and left.
I've now gone to a basketcase of a smaller company, in a player/coach role - and I'm happier than I've been in a long time.
It wasn't for the money - I took a pay cut. I have more problems than I had at my last role - the key thing for me is I have the latitude again to solve problems.
Whether it's pure technology or people, either way it's a system engineering issue - and the more "fun" the problem - the more fun I've found I have solving it.Reply
You're missing a relevant option for HN: became an entrepreneur.Reply
The company I worked at was great for 3 years. 2021 was a year where we were left - almost criminally - understaffed and the remainder employees picked up a huge amount of bits of others peoples roles. Rehiring was slow, despite available resources. WFH was cancelled at short notice. No obvious reward for carrying the compay for 6-12 months.
Employers, we'll only take so much.
I'll be gone within 6 weeks.Reply
There was a huge disconnect between management at the top and those on the ground.
I think some managers never learnt to correctly judge workload and responsibilities. They we're rewarding those with minor responsibilities for achieving goals and harshly punishing those with huge responsibilities for minor misses.
This inability to judge workload and responsibilities was previously hidden by people's presence in the office giving bad managers a proxy but now the flaws in that management style are being exposed in the most extreme way. Entire teams are disbanding since as soon as one member of an overworked and under-rewarded team leaves the problem for that team is exacerbated.Reply
No option for, "the job sucks"?Reply
While I have gotten regular promotions I'm just vastly underleveled. I went to my skip asking for a level adjust and he laughed. I went to his boss who said yes, aboslutely, I'll inform your chain up to me. I went back to my boss, he said yes. I went to my skip, he said, absolutely not, provide me a ranked list of all employees and why you're better than all of them.
The problem is I'm underpaid, but the real problem is all the old garbage swirling around companies that don't respond to their management, but do expect those reporting to them to fall in line.
I could do incredible things if I wasn't treated like an underskilled know-nothing and given the authority to manage a lot more (finance, people, strategy etc). My skip just happens to be a company lifer who was coddled by previous executive leadership, so he thinks he doesn't need to change ever.Reply
I left my job at an ad agency this past week because I was asked to train and manage a team of three brand new employees within my first month on the job. All the while I was expected to "ship" advertising reporting and execution deliverables that I myself wasn't fully in the swing of doing.
For 6 months my managers told me "things will get better when the team starts to get comfortable." But at the same time they'd constantly critique the shoddiness of the work and not provide help. This left me to train and execute all at once. After that 6 months it was becoming clear that the attitude of management was going to put me in really tough positions. And it was unclear if and when my team would get to a level of competence where they were confident and able to execute the job on their own.Reply
Current job is focused on $x and I want to do $y. I guess that's similar enough to new challenge/learning?
Another reason - job is too easy and undemanding or there just isn't that much to do. I could have coasted and collected a paycheck (I did for a little bit) but I just knew that it's bad for me to stay there long term. I imagine this is some people's dream job though.
And more money of course is a factor. I once left a job that I really enjoyed doing for one that I suspected wouldn't be that great just because I could more than double my salary (it's not that impressive, I was just severely underpaid at the first job).Reply
I gave my notice today with an unofficial job offer. The acquisition changed the atmosphere of the company and slowed us down. The parent company swore not to change us yet they did and started pushing us to adopt all of their systems for no good reason. When I started there it was kind of still in the startup phase and was quite a lot of fun - not anymore. One sad thing about this industry is that almost wherever you go is going to be beholden to some massive entity or at the very least a board of people who just want to make money even at the detriment of the product.
The other element is salary. My salary just wasn't keeping up with inflation and I've benefited greatly by moving on.Reply
Company Culture for me. I absolutely hated the company culture. But me leaving now is unrelated to the 'great resignation' as it wasn't due to compensation reasons. I will never work for a company that will have me compromise my ethics to make a dollar, and that's what they wanted me to do.Reply
I left my job last year to go to grad school - Over the last 10 years I'd started a couple companies, grinded out and moved all around the country. My company was successful, grew beyond 10 people and I felt I could in good conscience leave it and everything would stay on course. Now I'm on track to be a lawyer. Covid is a time of reinvention I suppose.Reply
Compensation and I got in a fight with my boss.Reply
I left my job last may. I was a web developer at a branding /marketing agency. The office/people were great, no complaints about the work place at all. But after 5 years (and a similar stretch as an in-house before that), I just felt VERY burnt out. Every day was the same, projects were meaningless, coding wasn't challenging, I felt like an imposter and bored at the same time, I wanted to build my own 'thing' and felt i was running out of time.
I was so checked out at the end, I bombed a big project and was totally stressed over it the entire time. After that, I made a spur-of-the-moment decision while doing a post-mortem with my boss to resign (probably would have been fired anyways).
Haven't worked since May 2021. Worked on my own project for several months, but the burn out is real and I can't seem to get back to a spot where I am 'excited' about anything let alone coding, even for myself. It has definitely taken its toll on my wife and family, and I have started to look for work again although I know this just leads back to burn out feeling and feeling of failure, which I realize I was struggling with before I resigned.
I haven't been able to complete projects - personal, work, home, coding , non-coding - for a long time now and am struggling to figure out why and how to overcome (at this moment I am procrastinating putting up baseboards in our ALMOST finished basement with reading and replying to HN).
In the end, although it was in essence a selfish move that spans many of the options in the poll, I think I quit my job because mentally I needed a break from what I was doing and really don't want to do it for anyone else ever again. The biggest problem with this is that i waited too long to do this and now i can't find the motivation/drive/will/self-dicsipline to even do it for myself now due to extreme burn out.Reply
i quit my job to a ski bum. I am in my 40's . Just needed to live a differnt way for a little bit and out on the mountain skiing is the happiest i am.Reply
Culture is such a vague term and everyone has their own definition. Not only that, but also the answers to what a good culture is are even more vague. Like embrace transparency or move fast and break things. At best these statements apply metaphorically to an imaginary scenario. If it stands for let's get together and drink beer every Friday that's more tangible, but I haven't seen companies codifying those lately and instead gravitating toward more vague non-sensical statements to keep most people relatively happy and certainly not to piss anyone off.Reply
What you are seeing here with the labor market is essentially the same thing we are seeing with real estate. It is a liquidation and recapitalization into a higher asset class. People selling their homes, cashing out and using their equity to get a larger home with a larger basis for appreciation.
Similarly for the labor market, employees taking their experience and recapitalizing into other roles with better benefits and pay.
What you see is effectively a greater polarization between those who do well and those who don’t. See amazons de facto policy of give the top tier best benefits, raised and comp and to hell with the rest.
So where do things end up? Well, the rich get richer. Ultimately everyone moves up since there’s such a demand for (houses|labor). However as we see with first time home buyers, it gets harder, those who are paying more end up demanding more.
Furthermore there is a never ending supply of labor which is why companies like Amazon are not taking this as seriously as you’d expect. There will always be H1b de facto slavery which creates a large inventory pool. However the “housing” is effectively top tier employees which command top dollar.
Ultimately I don’t think the system changes except for the best of the best. Because as always it is very supply constrained.Reply
I stopped working because my savings have exceeded my capacity to project into the futureReply
Stress should be an answer. Life balance is different than being mentally traumatized. At least that’s what a guy I know told me.Reply
Great that I can vote multiple times. I left jobs because of life balance and flexibility but I consider both subsets of company culture.Reply
The meta for everyone in software development is to change jobs every two to three years to increase your income.
But people generally leave when the company stops being fun for you . I doubled my income at a job I enjoy after leaving another company and joining a startup and doing some freelancing in crypto / hyperledger software prototyping. I also lucked out since I was hired in 2019 and I paid all of my credit card debt and my investments made my net worth increase to $200k.Reply
I voted company culture, but that's not the whole picture.
I was laid off about a month ago (2 weeks before Christmas; "non-performance business-related decision"), but I was job searching anyway. Why? Because nobody freakin' listened, and my position wasn't taken seriously. Call it strategy misalignment, bad culture, whatever.
After joining, I learned they had 4 CIOs within 3 years. As a mid/sr. level engineer, I was teaching senior management about my position while also learning about it myself. I still don't know how many they laid off during the annual review period, but it was at least several to a couple dozen.
I'm done. I know now why so many retire early to farms, baking, wood working, homesteading, etc. Corporate can have their BS.Reply
Because I was in academia and it was an unhappy place full of politics, over inflated egos, backstabs, friends hiring, pressure for meaningless things. And half if not more of published papers in my field were overhyped in-vitro experiments with no real world applications. You have seen that cannabis and covid one this week? That's a typical example of that, lots of publicity around experimental artifacts with no biological relevance. I am super happy to have left this insanity.Reply
Sometimes people leave their job because they retire. In fact, nearly everybody eventually retires.Reply
I think a lot of people were already unhappy with their jobs, for whatever reason, and the pandemic + pandemic work life just pushed them over the edge.Reply
The organization lost my respect once they mandated that I get a health procedure in order to work for them. I received an "exemption", but the damage was done: I no longer believe the organization is a net positive for me because they will play political games, and I am just a pawn.Reply
It would be cool if the Poll on HN would sort the items by rank and maybe include the ratio.Reply
I voted "compensation" (duh!) and "company culture" but the real second reason is that (a) I think I had gone as far with the company as I was going to get and (b) I didn't trust that they would make a planned transition smoothly.
Apparently I left just before they started laying people off...Reply
Today is my last day at my current job. I had a colleague leave last year after he had some issues with his team, and I learned that a significant salary bump was pretty easy to get. I was _really_ bored at my role, and didn't see a strong future for our project and company, so I started looking.
I'll be starting a new job at the end of the month. Salary is over 2x my current pay, and if you include equity the total compensation will be 3.5x my current pay. I will have to relocate (which I wanted to do anyway), but I can't fathom why anyone _wouldn't_ be looking right now given the state of the job market.Reply
I had a job that I enjoyed and excelled at. I did great, got good bonuses so I didn't move for 10 years. Then I got laid off. It was really really hard to find work again as my background wasn't full of hot technology, and I had no experience of modern interviewing (like leetcode). I dont want to be in that position again, so I'm interviewing again after a few years already.Reply
Just this week I chose to move laterally within a company. But that does entail leaving my former role, so I think the psychology is similar.
I had been working in a game development role, developing gameplay features. The position I moved to is developing service infrastructure for the game developers.
For a bit of history, my software career started at this company developing tools for the customer support department (I actually originally worked in customer support and my development promotion came about because I was developing tools for myself and my teammates). That went on for a number of years and I enjoyed it. I also did a bit of anti-cheating work, which I pushed for, so that was a good time too. Then I was placed onto this game feature role without any say in the matter.
I knew even before this change occurred that I don't care about commercial game development. I have plenty of amateur game development experience, but it's not something I have any interest in doing all day every day, especially when the motivation is commercial rather than artistic, and especially especially when higher-level decision makers relentlessly interfere. What I care about to the extent I can happily do it on a daily basis is making tools that make those around me more effective, pretty much regardless of what they're doing, because that makes the people around me happier.
So when I was asked if I was interested in this role, although I negotiated terms a little bit, basically I realized I had no actual leverage because just the work itself was such an appealing change to me. Incidentally I did get a substantial raise, but I'd made up my mind before that was even presented.
I also had some minor frustrations with the team I left, but I honestly think the team itself was on a promising trajectory, just the larger game development organization they were in (and my new team is outside of) was not. So I suppose in the "People don't quit jobs, they quit managers" frame, I quit the senior leadership of the game.Reply
Reading through the comments is interesting, I seem to be one of the few looking for a more intense job rather than less.
My current job, given who our customers are (the code does something a little more serious than advertising), should be a lot more intense than it is. At present we're just half-assing everything and cashing the checks. Sure it's easy, the pay is industry median, and the benefits are above average. That's not why I got an engineering degree though. What example does that set for my future kid? Bust your ass to get a STEM degree so you too can find a mediocre job with a sandbagged contract to comfortably mooch off of using a tiny fraction of your talent? I can't even really justify it from a "looking after my family" standpoint, because while the income comfortably pays the bills it certainly isn't going to pay my kids' future college tuition and buy us a good house. If I'm going to turn into a jaded clock puncher there are much more lucrative clocks I should be punching.
I'm not so naive as to expect zero bullshit and engineering purity, money is ultimately the game at any private corporation. But we could be making the same money and doing a lot more. Issue is there's no business incentive to do that, and no way for me to provide said incentive in the short or even medium term. Even if I went management there's no single position I could target that would make a difference below the Executive level, and the longer I work here the more I see how that's by design.
What with a kid on the way I'm staying put for the next 6 months at least. Don't want to be changing insurance during the wife's pregnancy and she'll obviously need some stability after the fact. But after that I'm looking for a job that's 50% bullshit instead of 90%. If I can say one thing for this job, it gives me a stable platform so I can be picky about my next position :)Reply
I left my last gig as a datacenter tech when my employer made it abundantly clear that any of us dying of covid were “acceptable losses”. At the outset they immediately moved to make sure we were classified as “essential” and then attempted to compel us to keep working. When employees began dying I left.
Because fuck you thats why. I’m not dying so some douchebag can have a second yacht. I’m happy to let the entire system burn to the ground.Reply
1. Lockdown politics
2. Company culture
Now happily self-employed :)Reply
I have enough money saved up, whereas I don't really need to work for at least 6 months.
This is assuming I don't even try to adjust my spending, push come to shove. I can probably last up to a year without a job.
I remain employed because frankly otherwise I'd be bored.
Once COVID gets under control, I think I'm going to probably live in another country for at least 3 months.Reply
I'm surprised that there's no option in the poll for people who leave because they no longer believe the company is viable.
Why stay until the ship sinks? How many rounds of lay-offs have to occur before you start polishing up the resume? For me, one. Or even before layoffs, if there's an acquisition is in the works, boom, I am outta there (unless management specifically says I am not impacted). 8 jobs in 22 years, 1+2+4+1+2+2+2+8, of these 8 only 3 still exist or are recognizable as part of another company (including the one I am still at).Reply
I've been toying with the idea for about a year now - and I find it hard to pick one of these over the other.
I think in general it's a re-evaluation of this matrix and how it compares with the role in hand. The pandemic put a lot of pressure on most and I think this naturally leads to looking at greener pastures.Reply
My last job was I think maybe a somewhat less common story than I see here. I definitely did want more money and could see the raises begin to slow down as I reached the upper half of my pay band. What really had me looking though was that I was using dead-end proprietary tooling, with no team to work with, becoming the single point of failure on one of my department's main "products" I guess if you could call it that. It also still involved a lot of mind numbing work and dealing with red tape since it was a defense job.
It was about year 3 and I needed to leave or I'd get pigeonholed there forever, so I just took the first appealing job offer that I scored and bounced. Decent raise but the new environment has made my resume massively more appealing (using very in-demand tech, managed to get a fast title bump, I lead a small team now, etc).Reply
My anecdote is that because of a large stock decline since starting, unless my company gives an unheard of refresher grant, then my income is going down something like 25-30%. They're no longer competitive because they have infrequent comp adjust cycles and other companies pay target comp with today's stock price. I think people who start new jobs now are going to make bank when the tech sector recovers, albeit maybe a few years.Reply
that's the best way of learning!Reply
For more than a year I've been trying to get it clear to my boss that I'm too stressed and need a less chaotic workplace. The last months I've had constant headache and fuzzy vision. I checked my blood pressure and it was 180/95. Ten months earlier when I last checked it it was 130/83. On medication now, but my heart beats so hard sometimes I think I need more medication.
When I told my boss about this, he said the usual friendly words about I need to do what I must and that he was relieved the problem was found. I nearly exploded when I read that and told him that high blood pressure is the symptom, the cause is my workplace. Got no good answer to that. I spoke to someone more senior than me and it seems hopeless to resolve this without leaving, so that's what I'm going to do. Leave, and start my own company.
I can't work for someone who lacks empathy and is dangerous to my life.Reply
Because of Fiat money, in a nutshell. Bad fiscal and monetary policy. This is what you get. Inflation in shortages.Reply
A large majority of job switching this past year is largely due to covid.
Industries being affected differently, working arragements changing, and a big one being that during the pandemic many people were afraid to resign during a time of crisis and held on to jobs that they normally would have gotten rid of sooner.
Then of course you have the resulting inflation and price mismatches in the job markets and it's often easier to switch jobs than to negotiate higher salaries.
I don't think your poll options really allow you to capture the big picture.Reply
Back when I left there was a ceiling to compensation but no limit to exploitation. More and more would get piled onto me, more and more skimmers would be inserted between me any my salary. It just got to the point where there is not a number that would justify the way I was living.
I wasn't and didn't have in prospect a way to get the compensation in accordance to my supposed worth to any of the companies I worked for. So then I asked myself where is that money going? What am I enabling by being locked out of that much cashflow?
Following up on that direction of inquiry got me answers that I could not, physically endure. I will never be able to trust the judgement of others come before me they way I used to. The game I inherited was nihilistic to a degree incommensurate with the crowdedness imposed by growth.
Those come after, that game will not inherit. Their landscape is cynical and disjointed from the reality of people around them, aimless in it's idealism. It is possibly the right way for them to be, to survive or even thrive. For about 4% of them. Same as the nihilistic system was benefitting about 4% of us back in my time. Probably was the same back when it all ran on slave labour.
I got to understand Thiels' "competition is for losers" quip. 96% are flushed out, so this must be what the system is for. Selection, not improvement or enrichment.
But I sure know I won't be participating. You can't "change the system", it can only die to a more cynical system. I've seen it happen and I'm not playing any more.
I will not be voting. I will be doing.
My children will not go to your schools. I will be teaching.
I will not listen to a doctor that never leaves his office and is paid for my being sick.
I am too old for this shit.Reply
I read a review of the book "Becoming Trader Joe" by Joe Coulombe who founded the Trader Joe's supermarket chain. One of the very smart things he did was understand how expensive turnover is, so he oriented the company around keeping his employees motivated to stay.Reply
I left my previous job because breach of trust - if you're telling me for months that we're going to use language A, and then you go with language B, then that's not really treating your team with respect. I'd be happy learning new language, if it's right for the job. Making a decision on a whim is not something one should do, without consulting with people that actually built the platform.Reply
You're missing an option for management IMO.Reply
I recently changed because all of the above at once:
- spent 3y at prev job, which is typical interval where 1) learning starts to plateau, and you realize all the unchangeable constraints that block you from delivering things you'd like to deliver; 2) you are in company long enough that you're the reference point for dozens of things and people keep pinging you all the time; and you somehow end up in a box that you can't get out of; at the same time getting recognition/promotion is hard if you're in a large group of folks with similar level of exp and company is not growing
- salary-wise, recent market move has been bonkers, and getting a bump at $prev_job being even a slice of the current market rates was unimaginable.
- there definitely is a FOMO when you see all the new technologies that everyone seemingly embraces while your company does not (TypeScript! Github Actions! Cloudflare workers! and what not), and you start thinking you'll become unemployable soon
- trying to check out a slightly different kind of organization and under a different business model and different scale
- remote: due to covid everyone's been remote and will be for a while, but it was only semi-reflected in the prev company's way of working and it was not clear what will be the way forward; shifting to proper full remote / async gives me some kind of stability in how to think about work and life for a while, and makes it possible to move far away from the office if I decide it's worth itReply
I suspect that the so-called Great Resignation follows a period of nobody leaving their jobs, presumably due to fear of what was to come amid the pandemic. Last year reports were indicating that a record number of people wanted to leave their jobs, but weren’t, thus giving us a glut of people ready to leave all at once instead of doing so over a longer period of time like they normally would. This would also explain the so-called Labour Shortage we were hearing about. With people not looking to job hop, people applying for work dried up, leaving a liquidity problem. In normal times employers always have someone ready to leave their current position in which to hire.Reply
other: working home/away from people leaves many (not all!) a bit less happy than before. You begin to see things in a more negative light. This "the big depression" - big in the sense of a small change across many people - has an impact on more people being unhappy with their situation.Reply
To make a crude but I think apt analogy, the boom in remote work is like Tinder opening up the dating market. If you are the hot item, you now have a vastly larger number of suitors to choose from and can up your standards. Before, things were much more geographically constrained and the market was less efficient.Reply
I left my very good job in the bay area and relocated to a "quality of life" city and am taking a some time off now.
As a manager of a large team, COVID definitely made the last couple of years hard. If not for productivity, then certainly for team cohesion. It's like the famous Milgram experiment; it's just easier for people to behave in unsympathetic ways when everyone else is just a face on a screen. I also noticed that (IMHO) the 'wrong' people kind of took over the attention of the org. In person, the pillars of the org were the desk locations of the strongest engineers and mangers that helped guide the team. In this new world, the pillars of the team because the people who were the most social on Slack, creating channels and commenting everywhere. Maybe I'm getting old, but it felt like a bad culture shift.
So, I answered 'company culture' but it's really a mix of a lot of things--my framework is always 'what am I going to get out doing this job for the next few years'. If answer isn't something really important, I'm out.Reply
burnout should definitely be an option here. It was the reason I quit in 2020Reply
I have been programming on the same team for 2 1/2 years and have a very hazy idea what salary I could be making. So one reason for going out and getting offers will be to get an idea of that. If they offer the same or near what I make I am more likely to stay. If my pay is bumped $20k that is more enticing, and even more enticing the higher it is.
So I chose compensation, but company culture and life balance are part of that too. There was a reorg about a year ago, and not long after that people have been complaining about how much workload there is, and how we're not given the tools etc. to deal with it. I gave polite responses to recruiters prior to December, in December I had my first phone call with an inside recruiter in 2 1/2 years. The other night I was programming at 10PM to make a deadline the next day and fired off two applications, maybe just because it made me feel better (although the positions looked good).
It's not just workload, if my workload was refactoring and learning the technology deeper I might not mind the hours, but it is a lot of meetings with multiple teams and a lot of bureaucratic stuff.
The workload/culture just increases or decreases the timeline somewhat. I am socking away enough money a month, I know the team and the stack and have the institutional knowledge (almost everyone on the team joined later). I would also prefer to spend a few months reading the Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs to practicing Leetcode. But crazy workload and culture stuff speeds up my timeline - I am switching from SICP to Leetcode, and am more apt to interview at places "before I am ready". But if work calms down more I might push the timeline out more.Reply
For me, the proverbial final straw came when I delivered a dinosaur utility company it's first churn propensity score. Bit of background, my manager and their manager were non-technical and I had this thing running in evaluation mode for a few months with excellent lift in the top couple of percentiles. I had the statistics well grounded, and this thing was due to go in against basically nothing, renewal teams randomly calling prospects.
Anyway, before this thing goes live, I see a few managers printing out pages of Excel sheets and arranging them on a conference table to validate the model with literally pencil and paper. They didn't know what a percentile was until I explained it.
I handed in my notice the Monday following that weekend. Sometimes, if you're not trusted to do a good job, it's not worth trying.Reply
Which catagory would be "workplace abuse"? Other?Reply
I'm surprised that the poll doesn't mention retirement. I guess the construction of the poll forgot that there is a larger workforce than just the usual hacker news reader.Reply
So can we create a system that does not tie work with compensation? Can we have life-balancism, flexibilitism, and culturism instead of capitalism?Reply
left Dec after almost 2 yrs 4 mo, new challenge/learning for me, also putting a few months into a start up before going back into the work force
I am broke so this is risky for meReply
Curious to find out if anyone is able to achieve strong career satisfaction working less than less than 20 hours a week.
For me, I've always looked at the exchange of time for money. The problem with that is that you can't exchange money for time, only time for money.
Realizing this, I set work to 0. There seems to be a step function at 40 hours - the "full time job", but I haven't heard of many people that are successful in traditional software engineering jobs with a 20 hour work week, aside from perhaps those that work for themselves and have their project in "maintenance".Reply
Mission is the big one for me. I refuse to work any longer for companies that make humanity and the environment worse. I'll become a bartender before I work for another company whose sole purpose is to extract wealth at any cost.Reply
I selected other. I was working in the Air Transport Industry as the pandemic kicked off. Three months in we started having weekly meetings to "update" us on the situation, saying the company has money to weather the storm, expecting that storm to be just a couple of months at the time. Then there was the call for voluntary redundancies, reduced hours, discontinuation of bonuses, reduction of benefits. Once that talk started, I decided I wasn't going to hang around. I've seen situations like this play out before and this time I didn't want to be part of it. One night, a recruiter on LinkedIn slid into my DMs with a position that I was interested in. Two weeks later I had an offer on the table and accepted. Now I'm happily working in the Video Games industry.Reply
I think it’s somewhat self reinforcing. Work life balance got askew during the pandemic. As team members leave, the expectations don’t fully reset, so workload of remaining folks goes up. They leave, furthering the situation. At some point the cycle is complete and the team is almost entirely new.Reply
In the late-90s, the selling point for jobs in the newspaper (yes, this is how it worked) was "free laptop." I know of several people who jumped job-to-job to get a newer Thinkpad.Reply
I left my previous job of nearly eight years last month. Leadership decided to force vaccine mandates (the you-get-the-vaccine-or-we-terminate-you kind) in August with a deadline of mid-October. I was sort of on the fence about getting the jab but ultimately decided to leave because mandates cross a line. I ultimately got vaccinated, just long enough to keep that role until I found something new. My current employer has no plans to force people to engage in behaviors that should be a personal/medical decision.Reply
I made an upward lateral move at the same company because it gave me a 25% pay bump, plus the ability to work remotely. I was hoping that would allow me to finally be able to afford a house, but it still doesn’t seem like enough.Reply
Kids. We have 2 toddlers and are expecting again. Both of us had parents who were teachers, which meant their working hours lined up perfectly with our school hours and holidays. Raising multiple kids is pretty tough if you don't have that luxury! Tracking doctors, dentists, caretakers, after school activities, etc was exhausting, and for virtually all of these you need some kind of backup plan. Especially with a third child, there would be virtually no way for us to handle,say, a COVID wave. My wife is high earning and our tastes are pretty humble.
At one point, this might have been a hard decision, but COVID and a child on the way feel like we've had an extra nudge in this direction. The labor market is so tight and my specialty is in enough demand that I feel like I could jump back into my field in another few years if it makes sense for us.Reply
Working at Apple as a contractor sucks, I am starting my new gig next tuesday that lets me do 100% remote as a fte so I get all the benefits I miss out on at Apple since I don’t live where they want me to.Reply
1. More money, companies are throwing money at engineers 2. Companies are having trouble hiring and it's getting easier to get a job 3. Inflation concerns, need more money 4. Most jobs suck (I work at 4 companies now and have worked at 30 companies in my 10 year career) 5. Retiring early, read reason 4. Working for a company sucks.
The chip shortage means I can't manufacture electronics products so I see a long period (potentially of unknown length) of no income for my business, so had to put the electronics business on hold and find a regular job. Decided to do this proactively before I actually had to.
I am grateful that it was relatively easy to find new fulfilling work. This seems like a good time to look for a job.Reply
"Negative societal impact" is missing from the list.
Or "Company ethics".Reply
I left my job last April entirely due to compensation. It was also due to life balance, but I was willing to sacrifice some life balance in exchange for higher salary.
I was working 60+ hours a week and on call three nights a week at a consulting firm doing engineering. My manager told me I was doing a phenomenal job and the entire year-end review cycle agreed - I scored higher than 95% of my peers and told I was "invaluable" to my team. Most of that was less because of my engineering skills and more because I was just pouring my life into this job.
Then, I got a 2% raise (yes, 2.0%, about $100/month). meaning I was still paid less than everyone who had just been hired. Many of those new hires weren't even engineers! I quit pretty fast for an 80% raise.Reply
"company culture" is a polite way to say assholism. I personally don't really mind working at a place for long hours, moderate pay.
I think there's still a bit of robber baron culture in SE Asian companies. People who get away with firing pregnant women instead of giving maternity leave, docking pay for some arbitrary reason like not punching in. Because there's no early stage investors here, a lot of tech companies are founded by industrial robber barons, but the same techniques that worked for factories don't work when it's an employee's market.
At a lot of companies I've worked at, I'm also surprised how much the company owners don't care about it. About 80% of employees treat work as "just something to pay the bills", but the ratio is the same for employers.Reply
I changed jobs on 1.1.2022. The first trigger when I started looking for another job was solely because of compensation. When I learned what I _could_ make and my boss (two levels above me actually) just ignored my requests for half a year, I started looking. Soon I realized that I could also shift the focus of my work towards something I enjoy even more doing, so that became a reason as well. Now, after being two weeks on the new job, I noted that maybe the company culture is also a factor, but it did not drive my decision process at all.Reply
no one is really doing the kind of work i do anymoreReply
I just want to note I've left different jobs for different combinations of these reasons! I checked 3/7 of these boxes.
Don't interpret this survey as "Most people's primary reason for leaving is compensation", because the survey does not ask this ;)Reply
I have to agree here to comments saying wearing too many hats at the same time. Same story goes for me, Changing had so frequently everyday resulted in feeling of dissatisfation in all of the hats.Reply
Today was my last day.
I moved to the UK for a pretty awesome job. These last few years have led me to re-evaluate my priorities, and I'm moving back home to be closer to family and old friends.
Many of my international colleagues (especially European) have made similar decisions.Reply
Burned out to a crisp and worn down to a nub.Reply
I picked "other" for "my employer ceased operations". Maybe I should have picked "change is good"?Reply
Rather than quit or retire, I lingered in hopes of being laid off (letting my high pay level, ageism and existing "we don't need Senior Engineers; we have really smart management to do the thinking ahead etc. for the junior engineers" attitudes run their natural course). I "achieved" being laid off 4 months ago at age 58 and collected a nice (9 months' pay) severance package as a precursor to (this month) finally deciding to retire.
I still loved (and was/am capable of) doing the work, but having gone another few rounds of "Leetcode interview process" in the past few months, and having realized that I've reached the end of my willingness to tolerate what seems to be near-pervasive "Agile cargo-cult ceremony" (and everywhere, "Agile is whatever we decide it is") and (less pervasive but still frequently encountered) technically clueless headline-chasing (micro-)management in the presence of increasing active monitoring/collection of (remote) employee activity metrics and pervasive exhortations (mapped to KPIs) to "deliver innovation!" and "do it together!". Why run the Leetcode gauntlet (which seems to closely resemble Final Exams Week from my Uni days, with the same intense cramming prerequisite) only to land in a team/management circumstance of uncertain quality (bail out and do it again?)?
Likewise I've realized that maintaining my W2 income via FTE at my age and position would mostly serve to raise my tax bracket and preclude me from taking minimally taxed withdrawals from my IRA starting in a few months (these have to be taken sometime, and the less taxation, the better).
The process of "letting go" of my working career and adopting a true retirement mindset has taken me at least the past 4 months (I might not be done with it yet), because I do really love and have excelled at the hands-on work (and being self-taught and very motivated to stay abreast of much of what is changing for the better in SW Dev, I've been operating in long-term independent self-study mode for my entire career, turning this background process off is proving challenging).Reply
Work from home.
I worked at an MSP and we were remote for a year. Then when Covid started to pull back a bit they forced us all back to the office. To work remotely. From the office. Took me about 2 months to find a remote job with an extra $30k compensation.Reply
There has been such a dramatic increase in comp in the tech industry recently. But it seems that is only realized through switching companies. I know for the company I'm at offers to external candidates have had to keep pace with the market, but we haven't had the budgets to increase the existing employee base. So new people typically make ~25%++ more than good tenured people.Reply
I think as you make your way up the career ladder it starts to become less about compensation and more about the culture and politics. I would accept less compensation to work in an organization with clear goals, clear accountability, and a better, more open culture.
One item missing above is “People”. The people you work with directly on a day to day basis, including of course your own leadership make a huge impact in your work satisfaction.Reply
I'm in the middle of switching jobs (waiting for the offer letter):
- present job is an unsustainable ~60+/ hours week, new jobs should be 45/50
- new job has higher salary, and better equity package, and company is at an earlier stage with greater prospect for the future and better industryReply
I can’t offer an honest answer to this poll, because it depends a lot on what [kinds of] jobs people are leaving. This site is tech-centric and most of the job leaving in our cohort is some combination of all of these, with a lot of emphasis on flexibility and comp. In a lot of service-facing lines of work, it’s a mix of comp and accommodations (particularly for health safety) more than most other things.Reply
Why wouldn't you list vax mandates and general covid policies as responses?Reply
One of the good things that I think happened from the pandemic is that more and more people are realizing that tying up your identity and sense of self-worth in your job is a bad thing, that's why I'm very glad to see compensation so high on this list.
Sure, everyone wants to work in a good working environment, but I think the idea that "nobody left because of the money" is finally being put to bed.
The fact is that corporations and VCs have always realized that business is primarily just about the money, and their ability to get people to work for their "passion" has resulted in people getting underpaid. I'm always especially amused when people are expected to have "passion" when they're working at like a bank or an insurance company.
You work to make money. There are plenty of opportunities for hobbies and volunteering for passions. I'm not saying you shouldn't enjoy what you do at work, but don't lose sight of why someone is paying you to do it.Reply
I'm not leaving my job yet, but strongly thinking about doing it in the near future.
The reason is simple: I am not employable.
I mean that in a good way.
I hate being an employee. I hate having to go by the rules that other people make up even though I strongly disagree with. I hate being in an industry that does not share my engineering values.
So to that end, I voted "company culture" on this pool.
More importantly, I want to create things of value.
All the jobs I've worked so far have been bullshit jobs. The thing I'm paid to make ultimately does not provide any real value to society - sometimes it provides negative value.
And, I want to set an example to my children: don't be an employee, and don't strive to be one.Reply
I retired at the end of 2020. I had a good long run in the tech industry and was really feeling a bit burnt out.Reply
Poor Management, being left to rot while being managed by proxy of Jira.Reply
I don't know if someone is going to read this (I doubt it, this post already has 519 comments), but I am in a weird situation. I am Lead Engineer in a startup that works well in technical aspects. I attend the daily, check what my team is doing, and that's most of my days. If my PM asks for some bug fixing, I usually can do it quickly (after running some tests), or someone from my team can do it. I am trying to improve the general quality of the architecture (update stuff, improve security, etc), but most of the time I am quite bored. Nothing much to do, not challenging, etc.
The paid is slightly below market for a remote position (EU startup hiring in 3rd World Country, although I have a Master Degree in Computer Science), and I am sure I could get a better paid job. But I am not sure if I want to be 8 hours in front of the computer working. Right now, the boredom (which is awful most the time) allows me to do my own things / hobbies / etc, those days that I find something new, exciting, etc. If next Monday I want to read a book about Play Statino architecture, I know I will be able (except something bad happens in Production). But I don't find anything interesting, I will probably spend the day looking at Hacker News, Reddit, newspapers, etc.
I don't know what to do. I am not sure if I want to look for a new job that will make me hate Mondays (right now, most of the days are the same to me - weekends are different because my girlfriend / friends are available for plans), but at the same time, I don't want to waste my best years without taking advantage of my skills...Reply
I quit my job in November because ... I was burned out, and life is short, and the last two years were incredibly stressful, and my partner and I had an opportunity to do something else: we bought a sailboat, and we're going to go explore the world for a while.Reply
That’s a fairly unsurprising poll. It’s interesting that “life balance” scores so low. That may reflect on the HN crowd, more than tech, in general. This is a fairly entrepreneurial lot.Reply
I took a nearly 50% pay cut when I started my current job. I had enough in savings that I didn't need the extra money and I really wanted to learn more about crypto, so I took a crypto job and I'm much happier here than I was contracting, despite the significantly lower pay.Reply
I moved job recently. I was simply bored and felt like i was at nothing and not improving and at the same time wasnt being pushed at all. There was a big engineering culture which I liked but all the tooling, code style and even the languages i was working with were either in house or a horrible twisting of a standard language.
I moved to a much smaller company and so far the code and people are much more approachable and i also got a 25% salary boost which brought me well over the baseline for where I live.Reply
Leverage. Boomers keep retiring. Immigrants stopped coming (especially the talented/educated/smart ones).
Demand is high, so workers can have higher expectations. Everyone is moving up or moving out.Reply
I retired rather than go along with extremely bad scientific/technical decisions by managment. Also, continuing to work was not improving my finances very much.Reply
I'm considering leaving because the management clearly doesn't care about the developer experience. They don't have to write code for our app so they don't care how painful it is to work with.
Any attempt to convince them to give us time to improve our code is perpetually on the back burner.Reply
I left because they kept setting a return to work date, and then pushing it further and further without ever offering permanent work from home options. It showed a lack of respect for their employees by not letting them plan their futures.
Additionally, there was a lot of surveys and manufactured consent internally. It was all so silly.Reply
I will never return to an office. Feels like stone age thinking about that.Reply
The poll should have an "I'm staying" option.Reply
Some other people were taking advantage of work form home, and their slacking was pissing me off, so I looked. Then I got an offer which amounted to a 50% raise.Reply
A mix of compensation jump given inflation and the company going crazy because of the lockdown. The leadership basically mandated everyone should collaborate (but not officially, because the structure is flat and "everyone has a voice"; a member per team participates in a leadership meeting and then suggest what to do next) and, from one day to another, everyone was in meetings all day.Reply
On one hand i think finding a job with better compensation is the best thing to do right now considering that the rate of inflation has pretty much eclipsed a typical raise, so the best thing to do is look for 15-20% increase in pay. At the same time, I am personally very hesitant to switch jobs mostly because of economic uncertainty and my belief that we're going to hit a major recession this year. 2008, massive layoffs and hiring freezes still give me goosebumps.Reply