I have been working at LaFrance full-time
casual and fun atmosphere; promote from within philosophy
none that come to mind
I applied online. The process took 3 days. I interviewed at LaFrance (Concordville, PA) in August 2016.
STORYTIME: The interview was just the first thing that was weird... BEWARE, future applicants!! They aren't openly communicative AT ALL!!!
I applied online through LinkedIn and got a call the same day I submitted my resume. It seemed from the start that they were really in a rush to fill the position, and that they were acting quickly based on my interest, so I was a little weary. I came to the site in Concordville the next day and the interviewer welcomed me into a room right off of the lobby, so I didn't really get to see much of the office. My interviewer started off our meeting by introducing me to LaFrance, but instead of asking me questions about why I think I'm qualified, she went on and on about company perks and prizes and other strange things that were hardly related to the actual job responsibilities. To me, it felt like she was really trying to convince me to work there (more than any other job interview I'd ever been to) and was scared that I, a qualified candidate, would run away.
After that, the interview felt very brief. I was asked essentially to describe myself, and then a few non-substantial questions later, I was asked when I could start. As I am currently employed as an intern at a large company and am not finishing up for another two weeks, I told them my scheduled end date, but was immediately asked to push that back so I could start in ONE WEEK, which I thought was fairly inappropriate.
My interviewer was going on vacation the next day, so although she said she would be lightly checking emails if I had any questions, she was not going to be in the office. As I left, I was told I would be called by the VP, who was also on vacation, to continue the process. He didn't end up calling when I was told he would (vacation reasons, I guess?), but after a brief 4 minute phone call with him, I was called by the interviewer congratulating me on RECEIVING AN OFFER. As one does, I did not accept over the phone and said I'd like to take the evening to process. I was almost immediately called back, as the interviewer expressed concern that I was losing interest, since I had mentioned I had other interviews / companies to consider. Again, it really sounded like they were desperate for me, but I assured them that I simply wanted to look over the compensation package but was still interested in pursuing the offer.
Overnight, I did a lot of research and found that the salary and entire compensation package from the offer letter was fairly bleak for industry standards and for someone of my experiences and background. I asked around about entry-level / associate benefits, and some items were definitely outside the normal range on the lower end. As I felt like a qualified candidate (and they sounded really eager to have me start), I asked to have a conversation about a small salary bump and reducing the restrictions on vacation day policy, justifying my ask. At no point did I flat-out reject the original offer. I sent my negotiation letter the next morning, confident that I was being polite, data-driven, and excited to move forward.
An hour later, I was called by the HR manager, notifying me that LaFrance had RESCINDED MY OFFER. Apparently I wasn't worth keeping around, despite simply asking for a conversation about compensation. I immediately emailed the interviewer asking to discuss why the offer didn't stand, and she called me late in the evening (after a day at the beach, I'm assuming), telling me that I "didn't seem like a good fit anymore." They didn't indicate at ANY TIME in the whole process that the package was non-negotiable, and I figured they were desperate enough to hire someone to potentially be a little more lenient than they otherwise might have been. I was sincerely shocked that I wasn't told to "take it or leave it," but rather that my application was withdrawn completely.
To be completely honest, I am disappointed that my offer was taken away, but I'm glad that I dodged a bullet with this company. If they aren't encouraging their employees to fight for what they're worth and are manipulating young applicants to drop everything to join a team that gives less than fair compensation, I'm perfectly fine walking away from LaFrance.
In the future, I recommend your hiring managers really be specific about job responsibilities in the interview, and be honest if the position is non-negotiable enough to ELIMINATE A HIRE if they even dare ask to discuss something. You would've saved yourself (and me) 3 full days to find some other sucker who will accept immediately. Also, it's just poor planning to have both the hiring decision-makers go on vacation while you're trying to hire someone - it puts the applicant in a really tough spot if they wanted to talk in person, and your company at an even greater disadvantage if the candidate says no, or, in this case, you get rid of them.
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