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Is this ok to ask at an interview?

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
I have a job interview this afternoon for a part-time position at a Goodwill store (30-35 hours/week). I'm not really sure I want it, though I've really been struggling to find work since I moved back to town. I've been substitute teaching and living with my parents, which has been awful. This is a temp position (3 months). I think it would be a good way to get some money saved up at least, if I don't find anything else soon (I have a paralegal degree, but this area doesn't have a strong legal market, or strong market in anything for that matter).

What I want to know is if it's ok to ask if they'll work around appointments that I've already scheduled. I'm not exactly sure what the job entails - it says it's a light packing and assembly position. It sounds like it may be flexible. My problem is that I've been struggling with major depression issues since moving back to town. I've now linked it to a hormonal imbalance since I have an irregular cycle and increasingly bad symptoms that I think are menstrual-related. I feel awful all the time - it's like chronic PMS but I often don't even get a period. I really want to get into the gyno and at least be put on birth control pills. The good thing about subsitute teaching is that I can angle around appointments, and it pays much better than this job would. So, I'm unsure to begin with if I want it, but I'd like to learn more about it. Should I wait until I know if they're interested in me to ask about appointments?
post #2 of 17
I think it would be best to ask about working around other appointments right up front. Much better than asking for time off or schedule changes after you've been hired. Also let them know you've been substitute teaching and find out how flexible they could be with last-minute changes if you got a call to teach. If they are not willing to work with you, this probably isn't the job you need at this point. for a good interview. If you do get the job, I hope it turns out to be better than you expect.
post #3 of 17
Yes yes yes! They'd be more miffed if you waited until you started to tell them about the appointments.

And while it is always best to be honest, it's quite possible it could hurt your chances for the job.

For example, I interviewed at a company, and they really liked ME, but they were afraid I was a little too green with experience. They didn't offer me the job. Six months later, they fired who they hired instead of me, interviewed me again, and I reminded them that my wedding was in October that year, and that I would need x days off.

It cost me the job. My wedding and honeymoon was right smack in the heat of when I would be needed the most. By the time I would have started for them, I would have worked two weeks, then taken two weeks off for the wedding. It just wasn't worth them to risk it, and I understand it (even though I was a bit sad at the time).
post #4 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by maiseycat View Post
My problem is that I've been struggling with major depression issues since moving back to town. I've now linked it to a hormonal imbalance since I have an irregular cycle and increasingly bad symptoms that I think are menstrual-related. I feel awful all the time - it's like chronic PMS but I often don't even get a period. I really want to get into the gyno and at least be put on birth control pills.

Sounds to me like you have the classic symptoms of Polycystic Ovary Syndrome.

http://www.womenshealth.gov/faq/poly...y-syndrome.cfm

http://familydoctor.org/online/famdo...logic/620.html

http://www.acog.org/publications/pat...tion/bp121.cfm

http://kidshealth.org/teen/sexual_he...irls/pcos.html
post #5 of 17
I'm going to contradict everyone's opinion here.... I would absolutely NOT bring this up in an interview. No way.

Once you accept an offer and are officially employed, then, certainly, you can discuss your working schedule with your new boss, but an interview is your time to shine, not to be asking for time off from a job you don't even have yet.

Make sense?
post #6 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Auntie Crazy View Post
I'm going to contradict everyone's opinion here.... I would absolutely NOT bring this up in an interview. No way.

Once you accept an offer and are officially employed, then, certainly, you can discuss your working schedule with your new boss, but an interview is your time to shine, not to be asking for time off from a job you don't even have yet.

Make sense?
I can't agree. If I were an the employer, I would be seriously ticked off if I had just hired someone who then immediately turned around and told me she could only work if I could accommodate her schedule. What if it turns out that the job hours cannot be flexible? The newly hired employee has wasted her time and the employer's time and possibly cost another person the chance at a job. I don't particularly want to work with someone I can't trust to be honest and would probably ask the person not to use my name as a reference for her next job.

The OP is applying for a job a Goodwill. I have an niece who has worked a number of different jobs for Goodwill and I can tell you that they are known for working with people who have other issues in their lives. In this case I would say that honesty is definitely the best policy.
post #7 of 17
im going to say be honest. tell them the truth you also substitute teach but are looking for something flexible for supplemental income. I worked as a manager for a long time and i think mentioning that at the interview is he best way to go,if i was the one doing the interview i would be very appreciative you were honest and up front and also think that you were a motivated person out there looking for another job. If they are flexible im sure they will hire you, and if they arent flexible and you dont tell them the truth and get hired its going to make things miserable there for both you and yer boss.
post #8 of 17
I definitely would not bring it up at the interview. If you are offered the job, that's the time to ask, and if they cannot accommodate you, then you should decline the job offer.
post #9 of 17
I think this is a toss up. But knowing people who do work for Salvation Army and Goodwill...They are accomidating about scheduling. One lady I know has a standing appt once a week with numerous others tossed in and they are ok with working around her appts. When I interviewed at Perkins they asked me about weekends and holidays and what not. I told them yes Im willing to work holidays because I dont care to be around my family anyways but I also explained that I wanted to know what their request off policy was because there would be times I needed off and would like to be prepared to give adequate notice. They were completely fine with it and acccomidating...I just make sure I dont abuse the policy and ALWAYS give the minimum two week notice for time off even if its only a half day. I do agree that honesty is the best policy...Judge the interview and wait till you feel it is ok to ask about it....If you dont think it will be ok to ask then wait to see if they hire you and then tell them there are days you have had appts for before you were hired and need to know if they can work around them..If they can do some and not all try and adjust the appts for them also...It shows them your willing to give and take..
post #10 of 17
I'd let them know. There's usually a point in the interview for you to ask them questions and I'd mention it unless you're willing to change your appointments if they can't be accomodated.

As the interviewer, I definately prefer it when someone is honest with me before they've been assigned a schedule rather than after. It's easier to accomodate from the outset than to change it after the fact. If they like you and you're the best fit for the job, I don't think it will hurt your chances...and if it does, they may not have been the best employer for you.
post #11 of 17
I wouldn't bring it up in an interview.Wait until you have secured the position.
post #12 of 17
Wow is 30-35 hrs a week considered part time in the US? What's full time then?

Here 0-29 hrs is part time, 30+ is full time
post #13 of 17
I wouldn't bring it up until they offered the position.
post #14 of 17
How many appointments are you talking about? If it's just a couple of doctor's appointments, then no I wouldn't mention it. If you're going to need full days off, or we're talking about 5+ longer appointments, then yes - tell them up front.
post #15 of 17
I second the possibility of polycystic ovarian disease. A friend of mine from college had that and your symptoms sound exactly like those she was suffering.

Is it a Monday-Friday kind of job with 9-5 hours or does it fluctuate? If it can fluctuate I wouldn't worry about it. If you are given a schedule for two weeks at a time that is even better- you can plan accordingly- especially if the hours vary. I would ask about what kinds of hours they are looking for.
post #16 of 17
Actually I would say it would be better to bring it up in the interview, however from a different perspective you may not have to simply because time off policies and booking time off policies should be explained to you by the person conducting the interview.
In the 17 years I worked as an office manager I conducted tons of interviews with people and it was one of the things I always laid out in the job description.
So if it isn't included in the explanation package you have the right to ask, the same way you have the right to ask about wages, benefits, vacations and any other policies that effect the way you may do your job.
I think most perspective employer's expect questions of that nature.
post #17 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by SwampWitch View Post
I definitely would not bring it up at the interview. If you are offered the job, that's the time to ask, and if they cannot accommodate you, then you should decline the job offer.
I agree with this. Don't discuss it in the interview, but bring it up at the time of the offer.
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