Career Change: Would you do this?

I have a neighbor in Yangmei with whom I sometimes would go play golf. He’s a consultant for quality systems (ISO 9001 etc). A while ago, he offered me a chance to work for Taiwanese electronics firm setting up in Mexico and Texas. At the time he offered it to me, I turned it down because I would have had to have left on short notice. Turns out, I have the option of going in the near future with more time to prepare.

The job would be working as a IQA (incoming quality assurance) manager. The product would be flat panel displays. I would handle concerns with suppliers and customers.

The pay is low-- typical of of Taiwanese deals. Approx. 2000 US per month to start (but, then, I have zero experience in this kind of work). Two month bonus annually. Company accomodations at the production facility in Mexico and transport to the HQ in Texas. Full Health insurance (I made damned sure of this if I were to go to the US). Work permits. Salary review after 3-6 months (didn’t work this one out yet). Finally, due to the time difference between Mexico and Taipei, and the fact that I’d have to communicate with Taipei, I am told that overtime payments would likely have me making more than basic salary.

It’s a complete hard right turn from what I’ve been doing up to this point. My neighbor tells me this is a good opportunity and that my aptitude for learning and ability to interface with a Taiwanese organization (my neighbor thinks I get on well with Taiwanese) are what convinced this rather large organization to take me on despite my lack of a technical degree or background.

So, I want to know… should I take this? Would you?

I wouldn’t take it, but that’s because the salary wouldn’t make up for what I was giving up here. I’d have to sell my stuff, loose my furniture and all to earn a declining and dangerous U.S. currency.

You’re Canadian, aren’t you Stimpy? Make sure you get the correct visa (obviously). You can live quite cheaply in Texas from what I’ve heard. If they are figuring overtime into the deal, and you’re willing to spend a couple of years playing “career catch-up”, this seems like it might be a great opportunity, and could lead you in all sorts of professional directions. Could be a great step. It’s at least worth looking into.

Make sure to dress appropriately for Texas, though…you’ll probably need to buy a bigger belt!

Definitely sounds like it has good potential as a career move, but the pay does suck. Maybe you can request a salary increase to at least certain fixed sums (ie., $3,000/month after 6 months, $4,000 after 12 months), or certain fixed bonuses, if you perform satisfactorily. Otherwise, regardless of the potential, it doesn’t seem worthwhile to me.

If you’re looking for a new career and don’t want to live in Taiwan anymore, it might be worth a shot. Personally I wouldn’t want to leave Taiwan, sell all my stuff, etc., not for that price. But I’m not looking for a new career either. Oh, habla Español?

I would ask what they mean by ‘Company accomodations at the production facility’, especially since it’s in Mexico. If it is what I think it is I wouldn’t go.

And make sure that overtime pay is contractually guaranteed and properly defined (how much), else you should expect not to get one eventually.

Further, do you have any requirements to visit Taiwan or Canada regularily, for family or such? - If yes you should try to negotiate some free flights (shortest route) into the contract.

What the other posters said.

Also, make a comprehensive list of advantages/disadvantages of staying here or going there and look at it long and hard.

Lastly, are you going to receive stock options?

young, single…why not? Beats teaching.

Listen to what they said Stimpy. $2000 is really really low for the US- that’s a going rate for college grads who are going into their 1st year of administrative assistant work.

If I were you, see if you can contact others in the market, at other companies to find out what they started out with and what the rate is. Check out and (US job websites) Also, since this is in the US, you need to find out about if this is a position connected to unions, and if so, is the company going to pay for those fees? How about taxes? Are they going to be filed under US or Taiwan? Who’s going to do all the paperwork for you? Who is your support system in the US and Mexico for such a thing?

What about transportation while you live in Texas? I don’t think you can get around without a car. Will your health insurance cover you in Mexico? Most PPOs and HMOs don’t have international coverage.

Best of luck. Any new venture can bring abundance. Hopefully an abundance of everything good :wink:

I here you. Money is a major downside to this offer. The upside is it may lead somewhere more lucrative. I’ll have to investigate that a bit more.

Apparently, this isn’t a big deal. The word from the company is a Canadia with a degree can get permits within the NAFTA area easily. At any rate, much easier than for Taiwanese.

Good idea.

Yes a problem. I don’t relish the idea of living in a Maquiladora.

There were flights mentioned in the contract, about twice a year.

No, not really. At least not more than a few phrases. I’d have to learn. Maybe my knowledge of French would help in learning another romance language(?).

Thanks to all and especially those who pmed.

Sounds good to me, Stimpy. You were at a crossroads before career wise as I recall and I suspect only good could come of this.

However, and I’ll leave this up to others to add their bit, I was initially thinking it could lead somewhere, but now I’m wondering, because a lot of these types of jobs - that were formerly done bny Taiwanese engioneers, etc, have been taken over by lower paid local employees in China.

I think the future prospects thing is where you need to focus. I;ll leave that up to the sad goons that drift in and out of Dongguan to answer.

All the best.


Wow. Can you introduce him to me? I would love that. I love Mexico and $2000 usd is a huge income there.

I would inquire how much time in Mexico and USA. The salary is low by US standards.