ATD - Journal of Omnifarious
Oct. 11th, 2003
02:29 pm - ATD
ATD was an interesting place. Here's a summary...
- They order out lunch from a different restaurant every day as an employee benefit.
- They have a really interestingly designed health care package that's designed to give you a bunch of money you can flexibly spend on health care without any out-of-pocket expenses on your part.
- Programmer bonuses average about 50% of base salary, and have gone as high as 200% or so.
- The building was designed by architects for the people working in it. They had a lot of input into the design. The building has won design awards, and it supports the work environment extremely well.
- They have a number of other employee benefits designed to make life easier for their employees, and give them a lot of time to concentrate on work.
- The programmers are all very good, and it would be really fun to work with them
- The cost of living in Charleston, SC, is about 80% of what it is here. I could afford a really nice apartment there.
- It's a young development organization that still thinks "Work harder" is an acceptable answer when trying to balance the demands of quality, features and time.
- It's in Charleston, SC, which is a nice place, but a much smaller city than I would really like to live in. It also doesn't have weather that I'd especially enjoy.
- The company has been insanely profitable in the past, but isn't very profitable right now. They think they'll be able to change that, but it looks like the window for the biggest thing they made money on has closed. It's possible that more sophisticated computer models could find more subtle inefficiencies in the market to exploit though, so they may not have to change their business models.
So, if they extend an offer, I will have a decision to make. The first two negatives are very strong negatives. The first one, in particular, is an extremely strong negative. So, we'll see.
Amazon doesn't have the extremely generous day-to-day perks that ATD does. They have good people, but it's not the kind of elite team that ATD has. They have a much better idea of how to balance time, quality and features, though they tend to sacrifice quality, which I don't like.
Also, in the back of all of this, is a strong desire to find a girlfriend who lives within 30 miles of me. What city I live in is extremely important to me for that reason. Will there be any single women who are strong, assertive and much more intelligent than average in Charleston? I'm positive there will be in Seattle.