Career dilemma (salary)


I’m having a bit of a dilemma.
I have been contacted by a recruiter of company and they want me for a Technical Artist position. The company and their projects seems great and I am not too happy at my current workplace for a variety of reasons (in short: I am not feeling good there). On top of this I am a great match for this other company and the things they are working on (and with) goes well along with my qualifications. In fact I doubt they can find a better match.

The dilemma is that the offer I got from them is actually worse than what I have today. Lower salary, five less vacation days and I have heard from people inside the company that the bonus system is not that great. On top of this they sometimes do crunch (although paid such).

Had I been younger and at the start of my career the choice would have been easier. But I am almost 35, have 8 years of experience (4 as a Technical Artist, 4 as a 3D Artist) and I’ve had a low salary as a TA in the past. I’ve put in a lot of work to get the salary up to where I am now and this offer would mean that I take a step back. Besides this, I am looking at getting promoted to Senior Technical Artist at the current company sometime in the future. I am not sure how far away that is, but I think it could mean up to another 10% bump in salary (based on numbers from So going to this other company would mean that I give this up.

They are willing to renegotiate about vacation days and pension, but they seem very set on not giving me a higher salary than what they’ve already offered (-3.4% from what I have today). I am not sure if this is because the recruiter is inexperienced or if they are bound by a strict budget - but I am well aware that Technical Artists is one of the hardest positions to recruit for. Maybe it could also be that they treat TA’s as “just another artist” and that’s why they don’t offer more. I’ve spoken to some of my contacts who work there (and have worked there before) and they’ve told me that the salaries for Artists is below the industry average.

What would you do in a position like this?

The 4% difference is not a big price for changing the environment from “ok” to “awesome”. The quality of your life would be better if you are happier even with a lower salary.

Of course it doesn’t sound like much when you compare only the salary. But currently my annual bonus is 20% of what I earn during an entire year. This other company haven’t told me what their bonus is (% wise) but I’ve been told that it’s not a whole lot. A theoretical bonus of 10% means I would go down over -12% from what I currently have.

I will ask them more questions about this and if the bonus system is fair, and if they can offer me 6 weeks of vacation then ofc we are just talking about a minor 4% difference - which I would gladly accept.

So… Did you made a decision? :slight_smile:

I’ve had all my interviews with them now (Tech Artist, Tools Dev, Producer, HR).

The HR person I talked to is not the same person that contacted me for recruitment. The second person seems much more flexible about coming to some kind of agreement. I think things opened up a bit when I explained my experiences and seniority. I talked a bit about how I have mentored 3D Artists and Junior Technical Artists in the past and I think that made person 2 realize that maybe I am worth more than what they presented during the initial offer.

I am very hopeful and I will update this thread when I have more things to say. :slight_smile:

1 Like