christmas bonus

i started working for this company 4 months ago as a staff accountant. i had
about 8 months experience as a staff accountant in a previous position,
which was my first accounting position. so basically i'm still entry level.
this is a private company and they pay me a decent starting salary ($39,000)
which is good for my area. i catch on quickly and in several weeks i'm doing
many reconciliations, entries, etc. when i started they were really behind
and swamped... previous cfos and managers never even bothered to reconcile
the cash account. we have about a million - million and a half dollars in
our cash account and for the past year it was never reconciled completely
and there were variances of 2, 3, 4, 5 grand each month.
i'm given the opportunity to fix this and in the course of three months i
figured out all the problems and the accounts are now reconciled within 20
cents. it was hard work. they actually opened a new bank account and the
business office was depositing money in one bank account and listing it in
another and this went on and on for months. my "manager" had no idea how to
reconcile the account.
anyway, i'm doing more and more and now i'm compiling and entering the
payroll into the accounting system. the last pay period, my supervisor told
me i woudn't be compiling it because there was "too much new information"
that went into it. okay, cool. bonuses, deferred compensation, etc. but, i
still get to "enter it" into the accounting system. it's a huge entry and we
type it in... i asked my manager if these entries can be imported into MAS
90 and she said no, only exported... which i found strange because when i
worked with great plains we imported huge entries all the time.
anyhow... i'm putting the information into the system and they're giving out
tons of bonuses... over $350,000 in bonuses... mostly to the doctors who
work for us, the CFO ($35,000 bonus on a $150,000 salary), my manager
($5,000, been there 1.5 years) bonus and the accounts payable person who
works next to me ($2,000, been there six years). Then I get to my
information... and guess what? I get nothing. Absolutely nothing. There are
three people in our department and they got $5,000, 2,000, and I got
nothing. Even the human resources assistant who shares my office got $25.
I can't explain how humiliating and painful it is to be the one entering
this information into the accounting records, seeing $30,000 bonuses, $2,000
bonuses, $500 bonuses, and then having nothing for me. Why let me put this
pay period in the system at all? If they're not going to give me anything,
why not just hide it? How heartless and pathetic does one have to be to not
give someone anything, not even $100, when they reconciled all of these
accounts and took such a huge workload off of them, AND STILL let them be
the one to put this information into the system. To say it hurt me deeply is
an understatement. My first response is that it's ethically wrong on all
levels. To see some people "in the crowd" and live the good life financially
is painful. I thought about confronting the situation but I have to act like
it does not matter or affect my peformance. When i'm "reviewed" then i'll
see what's up and ask questions or request a raise. If I get a bad
evaluation then i'll know. But if I get a good evaluation and still got
nothing, I just don't know what to think. I want to be valued and
compensated properly. Being selfish is never good but to see others with so
much, hurts me deeply.
Reply to
"Me" wrote
Suck it up kid. I own the damned business, have for over 15 years, and I didn't get a bonus this year either.
If it were me, I'd be looking forward to next year instead of wallowing in sorrow.
Reply to
Paul Thomas
When you took on the job, were you promised a bonus? If not then you haven't been robbed. It's their money to disperse as they wish.
I guess they have a qualifying period of a year before they pay a bonus. Next year it will be your turn and they will have a better idea of what you have contributed to the company.
Be patient and don't get bitter or it will affect your performance, and the there will no bonus next year, perhaps not even a job.
Cheers, Rusty
Reply to
Even the assistant who shares my office got a $25 bonus, and she worked there since only November. Explain that.
Reply to
Well, you could ASK the HR manager. It is not a question I would ask of any other position though. Working in accounting you will see a lot of things that you will be upset with. Now is the time to "get used to it". If you can't, change professions so that you are not in the position to work with payroll. As time goes on, and you move through your career, you will see alot. TK
Reply to
If you are going to enter payroll, you really need to get over stuff like this. You were pleased when they offered you the salary you have, right? Why should seeing what other people get cause you to be displeased? Bonuses are arbitrary most of the time. Perhaps the person who got $25 worked a few hours off the clock and is being compensated in this manner. You don't know for sure. Entering payroll is one of those times when you need to be comfortable in your negotiations for salary and know that you are being paid what you are worth. If you feel you aren't, then move on.
Reply to
I'm not entering payroll, just accounting for it.
Sure, i'm happy with my salary, but seeing others in my department get $5,000 christmas bonus, and $2,000 christmas bonus, while I get nothing, is pathetic. I'm cleaning up their mistakes. Before I started the cash account never balanced and was off by thousands of dollars. My manager can't even do a bank rec. I'm a part of the team. Our company gave out $300,000+ in bonuses, and I didn't get anything. That just doesn't sit well with me, regardless of my salary. The world is definitely the haves vs. the havenots. It's a shame. It's great to see others laughing and enjoying the holiday when they're getting a $30,000 bonus.
Just today alone I fixed another mistake of my managers. She was supposed to void a check and didn't. The accounts payable employee cut another check . But, the company cashed the check that was supposed to be voided. So, going through the outstanding check list I obviously catch it immediately. Every day I'm finding stuff like this. You should see our written checks for the month. Every period there are dozens of checks that are off numerically compared to the bank statement. Check 1000 is cashed for $50. But it's not check 1000, it's check 1002. It's hilarious. "It's because the printer sticks." Okay, cool. So they ordered her a new printer, and then they asked me to hook it up, and I did. The people making the mistakes get the bonuses, and I don't get anything. It's ethically wrong. But it leaves me in a bad place. Bring it up? Rock the boat? Ignore it until my performance review? I am just not happy about it at all. I don't think anyone would be. Any reasonable person would feel underappreciated.
Reply to
Your disappointment is understandable but your bitterness will be your downfall.
Reading your posts leaves me with the distinct impression that you have a victim complex. Even your title "Me" says that!
You undoubtedly have keen analytical skills, but to make it to the top requires you to roll with the punches and not kick and bitch about them to all and sundry.
That raises the question; what was the purpose of your post? If you are so hurt then the remedy is in your hands, talk to your boss.
Reply to
dont take this it personally, because one day you will be the one with 5,000 bonus and the newbie will be getting zero. Will you stick up for them then? This is life girl, if this stuff gets you you now it will wear you down.
good luck
Reply to
1). You may have not been working there long enough to receive a bonus, or your position is too low to merit one. Did you check with HR?
2). You are doing what you were hired to do. What part of what you have done is above and beyond your job description?
3). You had better learn to work well in a team environment and add value to the company. In other words, be happy for your co-workers who received large bonuses, and use that as an incentive to work harder. Find out why they received bonuses and emulate their work.
Reply to
I agree. Year-end bonuses can be arbitrary and being employed there only four months would put you on a short list anyway. As others have mentioned, you see stuff like this all the time working in accounting. If after a year your salary, your bonus or lack of one is a problem then discuss it with your supervisor.
Reply to
I've read the responses to the OP and I don't agree with the majority.
"You had better learn to work well in a team environment and add value to the company" - this means correct the work of idiots and let them get the bonuses while you get no bonus.
You will find that most of big business is run on corruption. A third of emplyees do the work, a third of employees mess the work up and the final third make the corrections is a good rule of thumb. The incompetent employees are the ones who realise they have to make a difference so they lick the arse of their boss.
I'd recommend that you get out of this "team environment" as soon as you have the skills to do so.
People used to say to me that I'm a lot better than the people who were getting promoted but I wouldn't get anywhere while I didn't hide my contempt for my incompetent bosses.
I now have my own business, my wife has her own business and we also get income from property. I don't need to have any dealings with the incompetent buffoons except on my terms.
Be strong in yourself, stick to you views and ignore anyone who says you should fit in and become just another moron so you can "be successful in business".
Reply to
Peter Saxton
thanks for everyone for all the advice, negative or positive. i appreciate you all taking the time to write back.
it was eating away at me so i asked my manager the following:
i noticed in my last two paychecks that i did not receive any kind of bonus for the season. i would like to know whether it is performance based, company policy based on time worked here, or an oversight. if you could set some time aside to clarify this i would greatly appreciate it.
he got back to me and said we will meet about it next week, and apologized for not meeting about it today but there were deadlines he had to meet today.
i was nervous about asking or bringing it up, but i feel confident enough in my skills and work ethic to not shy away from such a situation. just today i noticed three more jobs in my area that actually pay $2500-$5000 more per year and I will be applying to those. I never had the chance to interview for high quality positions while working a good position before. i'm curious to see whether it makes a difference in receiving an offer and being in demand.
this situation has also made me realize i have to take care of myself and follow my dream of sitting and passing the CPA exam. it's easy to get comfortable when you're working, leaving goals behind, but i'm huge on setting for and reaching goals.
Reply to
Good for you!
Remember it's salary that gets you in the door, but employee retention is more under the control of the employer than the employee. If they can't afford to treat you the way you feel you should be treated, then you have the right to pick up your newly grown skills and take them where they will be appreciated.
Personally I consider a lack of or an unjustifiably low bonus an invitation to leave, it's as simple as that. It's a rare situation in this job market that benefits are sufficient motivation to stay working for an employer. Years ago there were things called pensions that were strong motivating factors for remaining loyal. Now most benefits are portable and fairly universal.
But remember if you're not getting the bonus you are looking for you still need to ask if you are getting valuable training that is probably worth much more to your resume. The bottom line is get what's important to you.
Good luck on your goal of sitting for the CPA exam.
Reply to
sounds like you took the correct approach. But no matter what your manager tells you about the bonus situation setting goals is important and passing the CPA exam should be one important near term goal.
Reply to
You might not have been given a bonus because they hadn't budgeted for it. If you are a new employee, you probably wouldn't have been entered in the bonus "pool" for the year. So you might get a bonus next year! An accountant for 14 years, I have been rewarded almost exclusively with salary increases than bonuses. On the other hand, I know lots of bonuses have been paid to management and others in my industry. So you are not alone in being an accountant and not getting a bonus.
Hang in there. It sounds like the things that are learning will help you as your career progresses.
Reply to
thanks Doug. I agree with you. But seeing the company give out $300,000 in bonus and knowing I stepped in and cleaned up a lot of the problems in our department, I still feel stung by not receiving anything, not even $250. The least my manager could have done is pull me aside and explain it before she gave me the payroll to enter. She tried to hide it from me by not having me "compile" the information as I usually do, instead having me only "enter" the information. But I'm not stupid. I know the departments based on our accounting codes. There are three people in our department - a manager (she got $5000 and I fixed her mistakes), an accounts payable person (who routinely messes up when cutting checks, at least a dozen each months are off by 1 or 2 numbers), and me the staff accountant (who got nothing). I think it's bullshit, but as people have said, you're going to see a lot of bullshit at jobs especially working in accounting.
So, I try to look at it as a victory because I've learned a lot in over 3 months, I'm studying for the CPA exam, and I had the guts to confront my manager in a cool, calm, and professional manner. If what they tell me is not satisfactory, I will look for a new and better position while continuing to work hard for them until I accept another.
I'm still hurt by it, though.
Reply to
well, today was the day i was going to talk with my manager about the lack of christmas bonus.
but... upon arriving, i had an email from him saying he was going to delay our meeting because we need to concentrate on the close for this month, as that's our first priority, she has an accountant coming in the 22nd for the audit/etc. but she'll definitely meet with me "sometime this month" after I do all the work for the year end.
i'm trying to do the right thing but there's only so much you can do. all day long, other managers were coming in my office (i share the office with the human resources assistant) complaining that their employee didn't receive their "extra $100 bonus" on top of their normal bonus. i was about to say, "hey, i didn't get shit!" can you believe this company? i have to compile and enter the payroll, see everyone get all this money, but i do all the clean up work, not even getting a dime in bonus or a satisfactory explanation why. he's a coward, what, he can't find 5 minutes to tell me whether it was a mistake, because of my performance, or company policy? i never asked for a meeting about it. all i asked was for an explanation. it's just not right.
he probably wants to tell me i'm getting nothing (after i do all the work he needs done). what does it matter anyway, after the year end? he got what she needed from me. i'm sending out resumes and got three calls already. if i can set up an interview i'm gonna request a half day off for an "appointment." fuck em.
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