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I'm talking with a recruiter for a tech firm.  My resume has my current address, so they should know I'm not local.  I know I'm supposed to give the answer "I'd relocate for the right opportunity".  However, I've just moved my family back to our hometown, after an unsuccessful relocation, and I'm not going to move them again any time soon.  'The right opportunity' would probably have to include enough vacation and salary to cover the cost of me living in another time zone.  I'm not certain how big that number would have to be to make it worth it.

I've passed the initial screening phone interview, and next are more phone interviews, but eventually it will be an on-site interview.  The cost in time and money for the hiring company goes up the longer we proceed.

So, when should I tell them about my reluctance to relocate?  As soon as possible, wait until asked, or wait all the way until there's an offer with a relocation package?

robin_s's picture
Training Badge

If you know you won't relocate, why waste your time or theirs with multiple interviews?   Others may disagree and counsel you not to close any doors, but in my opinion, I wouldn't follow up on this one any further unless there is at least a chance that you would accept the job. 

dmh's picture

are you certain the job is in the other location? Have they told you this?

John_Whitlock's picture

After the initial interview, the recruiter forwarded me two positions that he thinks would be a match.  Both are at the main office.  Looking over the careers section of their site, it looks like they wait until the on-site interview to talk about relocation packages.  My gut tells me they wouldn't consider remote work, but I'd probably have to ask directly to confirm that.

mfculbert's picture

I really think you need to go back and listen to the podcast on location preference. It brings up a couple points I think you are missing.

If you are not open to relocation then do not say that you are. If they offer you triple our current salary then most of us are open to a relocation but if you cannot accept even under those circumstances then you are not able to relocate.

Finally, if you are open to the possibility then you do not say no until you have an actual offer and know the details of the offer. 

Do go back and listen again.

mattpalmer's picture

 If you're not open to relocation under any circumstances, you need to state that ASAP.  I'd also review the circumstances by which you got into this situation in the first place -- did you fail to ask a question which (with the benefit of hindsight) would have revealed the need to relocate?  Could you have improved your communication with the recruiter/hiring manager to make it clear that you were not amenable to relocation under any circumstances (rather than the presumably more common "oh, no, I'd like to stay where I a- you're offering me HOW MUCH?  SOLD!" negotiating position that most people might take.

I've been in a (slightly) similar situation -- I was interviewing for a position in a certain location, but the (company-internal) recruiter (presumably) wanted to fill his quota for another location, so he just gave me a letter of offer and contract for that other location.  The complicating factor was that I knew there was a training period in the remote location (which was fine, and I was happy to do it), and the permanent contract in the remote location was explained away as being "this is the contract you need to sign, it'll be OK, we'll transfer you back afterwards".  This didn't smell right (I wanted something in the contract that guaranteed that they'd at least pay my return relocation costs if the transfer didn't pan out, and the recruiter wasn't willing to make that accomodation), so I raised it with the hiring manager.  He did a spittake, clarified that what I was told was wrong, and the recruiter was... reeducated, by all accounts.

Had I been less on-the-ball I would ended up shipping myself and my family across the world (literally -- a trans-continental move) on the basis that this was how things were supposed to work, only to discover I'd been lied to and was then stuck somewhere I didn't want to be with no way to get back except to resign and pay my own way back to my part of the world.

My own take-away from that was that I needed to always be vigilant about that sort of thing, and ask questions -- and always have the contact details of the hiring manager available to clarify things when you're being sold up the river by a recruiter.  Translating that to your situation, as soon as you get an inkling that things might not be compatible with your desires, raise it (politely) so that you can either get the situation clarified to your liking, or so the process can be terminated in an amicable and professional manner.