I came across a job ad that is, in some ways a dream job... but the timing is bad. And applications are due tomorrow, so I’d need to get that application in ASAP if I decided to apply.

Here’s the pros:

—It’s in many ways a dream job, that really fits my strengths in several different ways.

—It’s outside of academia, but would involve some collaboration with academic institutions, particularly with supervising student research.

—It’s somewhere I’ve done research at, and so I’ve corresponded with/met the people that I’d be working under/who are likely involved in making the hiring decisions.

—I have all their preferred qualification, and in the list of desired qualities/experience, I pretty much fit it to a T.


—It’s very similar to a position I didn’t apply to five years ago, and have always regretted not applying (the time scale was when I was in the middle of a year-long academic position, and while I was having good luck interviewing for tenure-track academic jobs... though I ended up getting none of them).

Here’s the cons:

—Timing. The application states that the hiring process takes, on average, 6-8 weeks. The earliest I could possibly start would be 3-4 months from now, but even that might be pushing it—I was anticipating finishing my data collection/labwork more like 6-7 months from now.


—Salary. It posts a salary scale ranging from $35,000-$57,000, with a targeted range of $42,000-52,000—and the application has a question of if, offered, will you accept a salary offer within the targeted recruitment range (ie, the 42k-52k). This is probably an okay salary for the area, but under what I’m currently earning now. I’m definitely on the higher end of qualifications for the position, to the point of probably being a bit overqualified.

—The person who’d be directly supervising (and probably playing a major role in the hiring process) is someone that I’ve had some weird interactions with in the past. It’s the person who got the similar position 5 years ago, and our professional interactions were fine—but we also were both in a meet-up group in a town we were new to, and in that social context she seemed really cold and standoffish to me despite the fact that we already knew each other in a professional context.

—If I did take this job, I’d be leaving my postdoc a bit early, and would be leaving students I’m supervising in a bit of a lurch. I’d hate to do that to them—but it’s also a frustrating situation because I am not, technically their advisor or getting credit for supervising them.


—The application is through a stupid government jobs portal that requires entering every single work experience you’ve ever had manually. It is supposed to auto-populate from your resume—but I had a look and I basically would need to delete everything that auto-populated from a CV I entered years ag0 (and never even finished the damn application).

So basically... even if I get an interview, I think the job would only work out if 1) they are willing to negotiate a salary that matches or exceeds what I’m currently earning and 2) they’d be willing to negotiate a higher start date. And even so, it would involved leaving my current position early than I anticipated, which would be stressful and complicated. However, by the time my funding runs out and my positions ends next year... there’s no guarantee I’ll have any other prospects.

Should I apply?