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Green Building Bible, Fourth Edition
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    I may potentially have the oportunity to work for a private company who specialise in the regenaration of historic buildings and landmarks.

    The manager has approached me today following a brief chat over a year ago, we are due to meet next week to discuss whatever he may have in mind.

    I need to weigh up the pros and cons of my current role within the Council which are mainly but not limited to; 4 day work week, flexible start and finish time, pension, sick pay, ten minute commute, easyish work, relative stability, holidays.

    Or try in the private sector and gain job satisfaction, further knowledge, be part of local landmark projects etc.

    What are peoples thoughts?
    • CommentTimeMar 9th 2017
    Don't bank on all those benefits still surviving till when you need them - all trends are to whittle those away. Take your valuable experience and jump ship, wing it from there. Sounds excellent.
    This is what my heart is telling me.... I'm not happy in my curent job or place of work but it's convenient.

    I'll have to see what he can offer and go from there. Who knows, he may even be willing to take me on 4 days a week as it saves his company 20%
    • CommentTimeMar 9th 2017
    You could say 'I'll do 5 days work in 4 - make it worth my while!'
    • CommentTimeMar 9th 2017
    The private sector tends to work harder and be more productive.
    So regardless of how many days you want to work, you will be working harder.
    And you will loose any long term benefit you have accrued with the council.

    But as Tom's says, just wing it, most of the people in those types of positions do just that.
    I have no issue working harder when in work, I enjoy challenges and keeping the brain active.

    Just with my current arrangement (following a Court battle with the ex) I enjoy picking my son up from school etc etc.

    I guess I'll just have to see what's on offer and go from there.
    • CommentAuthorgyrogear
    • CommentTimeMar 10th 2017
    enjoy the son bit*, they tend to grow up quick, and you can never recover any lost opportunities !

    *compatible with giving him a caring and economically suitable life context, of course (!)

    • CommentAuthorFlubba
    • CommentTimeMar 10th 2017
    Just guessing but your new role will probably involve travelling or staying away from home for short periods while working on projects whereas with a LA your work will more than likely always be within that LA area. If you have small kids and your partner runs her own business what stress does this put on family life.

    Although your a long way off retirement and a pension might not seem all that important at the moment your pension prospects in the private sector are likely to garbage, the presumption being you are in the LGPS.

    How secure is your current job vs how secure would it be with a private sector employer, thinking baseload LA work vs more cyclical private sector work on projects and the like. Although one could make the argument that the private sector will make your more employable in the longer term with opportunities to broaden your experience while gaining qualifications and references along the way.
    • CommentAuthorMarkyP
    • CommentTimeMar 11th 2017
    it sounds like the work will be much more varied and interesting. a great opportunity. Assuming the money is right, I would go for it.

    when you meet this contact ask about the culture and work life balance. You can work very hard and still enjoy a bit of flexbility around the family life. They are not mutually exclusive.
    Metting him tomorrow after work, I will take these points on board but the more I've thought about it the more I intend to leave the Council.

    Although my role and benefits is good on paper I'm not enjoying it anymore particularly all the politics that go with it. I want to progress but there's not much opportuinty witi and I want to be part of something that achieves big things.
    • CommentTimeMar 15th 2017
    I am sure the council won't miss you when you have gone.
    • CommentAuthorCWatters
    • CommentTimeMar 20th 2017
    Perhaps ask about their customers. Are they rich private individuals? Charities? Local Authorities or other organisations dependant on grants?

    Personally I've always enjoyed working for small companies much more than big ones even if they are less secure.
    I don't want to link to the company just yet but they have some very exciting local projects, I met with them last Thursday and they are keen to take me on and allow me to go back to uni to top up my HNC to a BSc.

    He is awaiting for a big project to get the sign off then he will call me back in to discuss and finalise. The role is going to be a Building Surveyor position but due to the nature of the business it will be a mix of roles.

    He has advised working hours are generally 8-5 so 42.5hr week as opposed to 37 if I went back full time from my current 30hr week. I need to weigh up the pro's and cons as it will mean I will be unlikely to collect my children from school but that could be discussed further and I would have no issue in working till 6 or starting earlier etc.

    Any idea on the salary? I was thinking £32-£36k with a car allowance? Given a similar role in the council is £27-£31k but less hours....
    • CommentAuthorMarkyP
    • CommentTimeMar 21st 2017
    Dont use your current pay as a baseline, this is the private sector, a completely different place to the council. You need to adopt the mindset that you are underpaid and undervalued in your current job, if you take a few £k increase over your current salary then you are selling yourself short. Be bold and negotiate. Without wishing to offend, I think your perspective of a decent salary in the real world has been skewed by time in the council.
    • CommentAuthorringi
    • CommentTimeMar 21st 2017
    A council pension is worth something like 20% of your salary to begin with. Then consider holidays etc and the hours you will be working.

    Often you are better just taking 45p per mile for car usage, rather then a lower rate with a car allowance. But check if they require you to drive a over priced, over sized car, and take it into account.
    • CommentTimeMar 21st 2017
    Lot to be said for Norway, where everyone's salaries and tax returns are published by law. i see Norway hs just displaced Sweden at the top of the national Happiness league (I thought that was Bhutan).
    Totaljobs suggests the average salary for a Building Surveyor in Construction is £42,500, Property is £41,570

    I'm not sure my negotiating skills are that great, but I certainly wouldn't consider joining for less than £33,000. However the experience and involvement in such big developmenst seems a great opportunity.

    If you Google 'Box City' this will be one of the first projects... I think it will tick many boxes for us in this group!
    • CommentTimeMar 22nd 2017
    Posted By: VictorianecoIf you Google 'Box City' this will be one of the first projects... I think it will tick many boxes for us in this group!
    Better hurry to make that an independent thread, before this one gets side tracked by people like me!
    Well, I've been apprached this morning and the Box City project is having it's contract hopefully approved today so I've been invited to a meeting to discuss a contract with myself....

    Fingers crossed
    • CommentAuthorJamster
    • CommentTimeApr 24th 2017
    Sounds good - keep us posted how it pans out!
    • CommentAuthorrevor
    • CommentTimeJun 5th 2017
    Don't undervalue the benefits of working in the local authority. A few weeks ago a friend who worked for our highways dept told me his pension was more than the salary he used to earn when he retired (about 15 yrs ago) . I retired from a private company, the company went bust the surplus in the pension fund had been depleted thanks to Gordon Brown's action resulting in my pension going into the PPF. I lost 10% and don't get pay rises consequently over the years the purchasing power is much reduced. Ironically of course I am contributing through my taxes to my friend's pension. Not many final salary pension benefits now left, depends on what you value most.
    It's no longer a final value pension in my Authority...

    That aside I'm still awaiing on an offer package etc.
    • CommentTimeJun 5th 2017
    This thread was started on the 9th of March, it is now the 5th of June.
    Does it really take this long to decide on a job?

    Well yes, because I'm waiting to see what is going to actually be offered on the table...

    Waiting on the contract to be formed etc.
    • CommentTimeJun 5th 2017 edited
    Seems to me as if they don't really need anyone.

    My partner used to work for the council and her pension was a good one. She started with them about 9 years ago, got made redundant last year and her 8 years with them is worth about £5,000 a year.
    If she goes to work for the council again, her existing pension gets 'degraded' to the latest scheme, which is worth almost half what her current scheme is (though she may be able to opt out of the council scheme and take a private one).
    She had the same issue with her BT pension.

    In the real world of SMEs, pensions really need to be sorted out privately as company schemes seem to only benefit the pension sales person/company.
    Back in 1985 an accountant told me that he just put cash aside for his pension and did not use a tax efficient scheme. I think he was right considering how poorly pension schemes have performed in the last 20 years.
    • CommentTimeJun 5th 2017
    Posted By: SteamyTeaBack in 1985 an accountant told me that he just put cash aside for his pension and did not use a tax efficient scheme.

    Back in 1985 SIPPs didn't exist and neither did PEPs, which preceded ISAs. So what he said then has no relevance now.
    Well, I got the job after almost two years of discussions.

    Some really interesting projects coming up. Looking to start mid November, just waiting on a contract etc.
    Don't resign from the council until you have the contract signed - or is it already too late?
    • CommentAuthorgyrogear
    • CommentTimeOct 6th 2017
    well done !

    soon, down those long townhall corridors, your footsteps will be just a memory, a Victorian Echo...

    Awaiting the contract next week then I'll resign. But thanks for the heads up
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