Benefits package question: IT field

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Submitted by kev374 on November 30, 2012 - 5:57pm

I have been a IT consultant for the last several years and not in touch with what is the norm as far as benefits are concerned. For a Senior IT engineer (12+ yrs experience) what would be considered a good benefits package?

- How many weeks of vacation (excluding sick and personal time)

- How many sick days (in addition to the above):

- Personal days (I know I had 2-3 of these when I was full time about 6 yrs ago)

- How much of a 401k match (some recruiter told me that 401k matches are not common these days due to the recession, is that BS?)

- How much of a bonus is normal? 10%?

- Is telecommuting at least 1-2 days normal?

Anything else I should know?

Last question is this... what does the normal work week look like in terms of hours? 45 hrs/wk, 50 hrs/wk? Is working Saturdays normal? I have worked Saturdays only on emergencies in my 15 year career but not as part of standard operating procedure.

Submitted by paramount on November 30, 2012 - 11:36pm.

15 hrs/month PTO
0 hrs sick time
Personal Days? What's that??
401k match 3% up to 50%
Bonus = 0
Work from home = 0
Medical benefits = SUCK!!!!

That's my experience...

Submitted by paramount on November 30, 2012 - 11:44pm.

As far as hours go, I really try to stick to 40 hours. Employers abuse (IMO) exempt status to avoid paying OT, so I don't work OT unless I'm going to be fired or in emergency situations.

Submitted by flu on December 1, 2012 - 5:14am.

Varies drastically by employer...

1. Previous financial software company in San Diego
(Company is pretty transparent about it)
http://www.intuitbenefits.com/

Submitted by flu on December 1, 2012 - 4:53am.

dup

Submitted by flu on December 1, 2012 - 5:03am.

Well i guess it could be worse.

I've been hearing 2st hand it's pretty bad at a defense company in RB that begins with the letter B.

And I've heard 1st hand accounts recently that a defense company beginning with the letter N that a bunch of high level enginerds were recently told they would be automatically reclassified 2 levels down, and pay cut accordingly, and that if they didn't like it, leave....

Yeah, that's why I would never be caught dead working for a defense co....I'd be a full time mortgage broker before that happened.

Submitted by paramount on December 1, 2012 - 10:57am.

flu wrote:
Well i guess it could be worse.

I've been hearing 2st hand it's pretty bad at a defense company in RB that begins with the letter B.

And I've heard 1st hand accounts recently that a defense company beginning with the letter N that a bunch of high level enginerds were recently told they would be automatically reclassified 2 levels down, and pay cut accordingly, and that if they didn't like it, leave....

Yeah, that's why I would never be caught dead working for a defense co....I'd be a full time mortgage broker before that happened.

I'd say you're hearing correctly....

I was also surprised to hear SAIC is breaking up.

Submitted by SK in CV on December 1, 2012 - 11:42am.

paramount wrote:

I was also surprised to hear SAIC is breaking up.

When did this news break? I can't find anything on it. Or is it inside baseball?

Submitted by spdrun on December 1, 2012 - 11:50am.

Can't you do whatever you want to do for a large corepirate entity on a freelance/LLC basis instead? No IRS issues as long as you're not being paid through a middle-man, and the insurance situation will become a lot better for small LLC's come 2014.

(Obama wins this round.)

Submitted by SK in CV on December 1, 2012 - 12:05pm.

SK in CV wrote:
paramount wrote:

I was also surprised to hear SAIC is breaking up.

When did this news break? I can't find anything on it. Or is it inside baseball?

Nevermind, i found it.

Submitted by flu on December 1, 2012 - 12:14pm.

spdrun wrote:
Can't you do whatever you want to do for a large corepirate entity on a freelance/LLC basis instead? No IRS issues as long as you're not being paid through a middle-man, and the insurance situation will become a lot better for small LLC's come 2014.

(Obama wins this round.)

My total comp package as a full time is better than it would be if I was a consultant. In fact it's been like this for the past 6-7 years.

Submitted by spdrun on December 1, 2012 - 12:22pm.

Depends ... what you do, and whether you want to put up with the aggro of working for a single entity 40+ hr a week. Being able to code or sysadmin from a beach in the South of France (when you live in the USA) is rather niiiiice.

Submitted by AN on December 1, 2012 - 1:03pm.

flu wrote:
spdrun wrote:
Can't you do whatever you want to do for a large corepirate entity on a freelance/LLC basis instead? No IRS issues as long as you're not being paid through a middle-man, and the insurance situation will become a lot better for small LLC's come 2014.

(Obama wins this round.)

My total comp package as a full time is better than it would be if I was a consultant. In fact it's been like this for the past 6-7 years.


Agree. I'm doing both right now and even SF freelance are not paying more than full time SD.

Submitted by spdrun on December 1, 2012 - 1:14pm.

The "extra payment" is flexibility, rather than having someone with "authority" set your schedule.

Submitted by AN on December 4, 2012 - 12:58am.

spdrun wrote:
The "extra payment" is flexibility, rather than having someone with "authority" set your schedule.
I'm calling BS. I've done freelancing, I've done full time, and I've done full time for a contracting firm. It's all relative on which company you're working for, regardless of freelancing or full time. If anything, at the same company, the freelance are more likely to be pushed the hardest.

Submitted by no_such_reality on December 4, 2012 - 6:46am.

When it comes to freelance, it really depends on your connections, the hotness of your skillset (i.e. seasoned mobile developer can pretty much write their ticket), and their ability to not work and be picky.

There is a lot of bottom feeding going on in the free lance space from companies to body shops. If you need a job, you're not going to get paid well. If you have a job , you can continue to push you wage scale up.

That said, freelance pays better for developer types than FTE. FTE pays better than freelance for support/admin types if you can manage your hours. If you can't, the hourly pay works out better as you start to bill 60 hours a week.

Submitted by spdrun on December 4, 2012 - 6:47am.

Generally, it's understood (or written into a contract) that I can send a temporary replacement for any tasks that requiring physical presence when I'm not available.

Submitted by AN on December 4, 2012 - 10:28am.

Nsr, I am one of those seasoned mobile dev. My ft jobs pays more after benefits than my freelance, even though my freelance is for a bay area company and my ft job is here in SD. If you're working 60 hrs a week, I think its better to do 40 hours ft and 20 hours freelance.

Submitted by spdrun on December 4, 2012 - 10:39am.

Why the flying spaghetti f**k would anyone willingly work 60 hr/wk? Better to develop a freelance business and work 40 hr/wk very flexibly after hiring some other devs.

Submitted by no_such_reality on December 4, 2012 - 4:32pm.

Because ultimately, being a successful freelance person first and foremost requires you to be an effective sales person.

And a very effective interviewee.

And a very effective technologist.

If any one of those three aren't top notch, your hourly rate and your down time will both suffer.

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