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So there it is, the termination letter

Veröffentlicht am 09.08.2020

Tadaa, so there it is, the termination letter. Right in time, it is the second from last day of the month.

 

But what is this? Date: July 15, 2020. Today is July 30. Hmmmm …

 

And what does it say here? "Ordinary termination of employment for early retirement"?! Hadn't I made it clear that this was out of the question for me?

 

And what else does it say?!  "… with two months' notice …" Why two months? My employment contract states that after the ninth year of employment (completed in June) I have three months' notice. But maybe I can't do the math, so a quick question to the lawyer: they sees it the same way. Was it again too tedious for someone to deal with annoying details?

 

So – let's be nice and write a letter to point out their mistakes.

 

Unfortunately, this does not change the dismissal as such. So let's start to prepare for RAV (employment office). They will definitely require a CV in German. It's rather unusual in IT, but what the heck – they'll demand the German version, I know that.

 

Some time ago I had the brilliant idea to get my CV in shape. Because, to be honest, they haven't given me any interesting jobs for about two years now. It bored me so much that I had made a calendar entry to talk to my boss about future jobs. Only that they had invited me to the first F2F meeting for that very day. The conversation with my boss was no longer necessary …

 

But I digress, back to the CV. I had already got that (in English of course) in quite good shape. I had already written some CVs for myself and for others in the past. What a miserable fumbling it had always been! If you insert something here, it tears up the layout there. If you split up a table here, you have to manually make sure that all the other tables look the same again, etc. etc., really tedious. So I got the idea to get away from these word processing programs and switched to a professional tool – LaTeX, the typesetting system I use for my publications; there is nothing more obvious!

 

Now I could pull out all the stops, and what had never happened before: I really and truly enjoyed writing the CV! For my next book, I had built a mechanism that allowed me to maintain the German and English versions in one and the same file. It worked great in the CV, too - all I had to do was flip a switch, and TeX would spit out the German version. Another ingenious idea: conditional elements. You want to adapt your CV to the job you want to apply for. If I want to apply for a job at Novartis, for example, I can now flip another switch, and without having to rephrase anything, the CV contains more Novartis-specific details. It's a pity that I can't do this professionally!

 

If anyone is interested: here is the CV and here is the LaTeX source code (to be viewed in any editor; the full beauty unfolds with a fixed-width font).



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So there it is, the termination letter

Veröffentlicht am 09.08.2020

You know that you are fired ...

Veröffentlicht am 30.07.2020

… when you, towards the end of the month, receive a meeting invitation from an HR manager that you don’t know, the title of the meeting is “F2F meeting”, no hint about what. You ask why, and you get the meaningful answer, the meeting is “about the next steps”.

Cool - this has a trifle more style than my last lay-off … which took place on the phone. (Do not get me wrong: six jobs in 34 years, and this is the second time I get fired. Although, last time it was technically a mutual “contract termination agreement” in the end - so technically it is the first time that I ever get fired).

The meeting itself was rather … well, I am still trying to find an attribute that is both appropriate and printable. She was so very sorry, our young HR manager, but unfortunately there are no projects they could put me in. She recommended to have an early retirement.

Early retirement? With 60?! I had looked into that topic before and calculated roughly that I have to work until the last day so that it works financially. So I mentioned that early retirement is not an option at all. No, no, said our young, motivated HR manager, obviously an expert and prepared for this meeting in detail (*irony meter: full-scale deflection*) - I should talk to Mr whatchamacallit from the Thingummy Insurance Company.

Mr whatchamacallit from the Thingummy Insurance Company then explained to me that the Swiss pension insurance does not pay anything until you are 63. What would come from the Swiss Pensionskasse would be a bit too much to die, but by far not enough to live.

I am always pleased when people treat me with respect and fairness - but this makes me angry. This was a slap in my face.

Talking about fairness: On the following day they reached out to me and agreed that this had not been going as it should have. But it is like it is, they said.

A real apology I did not hear, though.

OK, let’s wait for the written notice.

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