My biggest concerns about losing my job are losing really great health insurance and my current, flexible work arrangement. I can stay on COBRA for 18 months, but I’ve looked into the premium payments and they are unbelievably expensive. We were already looking at a increase with the addition of the little one. When my employer’s portion of the payments end it’ll be significantly more.
To be prepared I’ve decided to investigate other alternatives. My husband owns a small company and one of his employees is on a group plan, so I believe our family could join as well. Since I’ve had medical issues in the past I need to find out if the insurers will try to deny care for any preexisting illnesses or if they’ll refuse to cover me all together.
Health care is certainly my biggest concern, because I’ve had problems with my health in the past and I know just how expensive medical care can be. I also know that I will not skimp on quality insurance. I had PPO insurance when I fell ill so many years ago and I truly believe it saved me. Because of that insurance I was able to visit a multitude of doctor’s often without getting my primary physician’s referral first. I will definitely pay higher premiums to ensure the best care for myself and my family.
I’m also concerned about losing the flexibility my current job offers. Right now I am able to work from home quite a bit. While I find that sometimes I need to be in the office more than others for the most part my job allows me to work from any location I choose.
When projects first start up I often find myself traveling to the office four or five days a week, but once things start moving along I’m often able to reduce my in office time to two to three days or at least partial hours in the office a few days a week.
I’ve gotten used to this flexibility over time and I’m really bummed about giving this up. If I can find a job with reduced hours, (25 – 30 a week), this won’t be as big of an issue, but if I have to go in five days a week it will be very difficult. I get a lot of aches and pains from traveling to work, so if I need to work a full time job in the office I’ll need to find something relatively close to home or at least something with more flexible daytime hours that will allow me to come in a little later in the day or go home a little earlier to avoid any traffic.
I’m also concerned about reduced vacation time. Since I’ve been working at the same company for so long I earn a decent amount of vacation hours each year. It’ll definitely be tough to start back over at two weeks per year. Some friends have told me it’s possible to negotiate this number after being accepted for a position. Others tell me this is the one thing employers won’t budge on.
Strangely enough I’m not too worried about making less money. In fact, I’d gladly give up a little income if I can work on projects that captivate my interest. Although I’ve sought new work at my current employer I’ve often found myself quite bored with the tasks I’m assigned. I certainly make an effort to stretch beyond my comfort zone but the business of my company is pretty boring and the technology rather outdated. I’d be willing to take a pay cut to find work that is more interesting.
While I still think I’m making the right decision by leaving I must admit that these factors make me very nervous. I’ve gotten used to the benefits that come with my current job. Now I just have to hope I can find similar benefits in my next one!