Leaving a job because I don't make a lot of money, even though I'm told I'm "Important" and I'm "essential" to the business. Feel guilty or not?

I've been at this small business construction company for 2 years (right out of college) with my accounting degree. I started at $12/hr and now only make $15/hr. I do all of the payables, receivables, payroll, journal entries, day-to-day accounting as well as any other miscellaneous responsibility (new hires, insurances, workers comp, etc). I'm entrusted with all financials and banking responsibilities.

I really want to be an auditor and am studying for my CPA right now-took one test and will take another in a month or so. CPAs make at least 60K!!

They tell me all of the time how important I am and that "Knowledge is power" and I'll "Make more when I'm experienced".

Soo they won't pay me more until I get experience, but they still ask me to do a ton of things? I can't even move out of my parents' house!

I don't think I'll get paid much more here. Am I justified in job searching and wanting to leave? I'd feel bad leaving them with all of my tasks to pick up on, but I feel like if it would be that devastating for me to leave I would be getting paid more.

Updates:
The last time I got a raise, they gave it to me 6 months later than they said they would, it was from 12 to 15 dollars. They said that's a huge jump and they probably wouldn't be able to give me another one for a long while. I understand they are a small business and I know the financial situation isn't the best right now, but I'm seriously underpaid. They just hired a carpenter at close to $25/hr. They hired and fired a proj asst for 16/hr and she sucked at her job
Yesterday he brought me in to his office and said this (paraphrased): "Hey bump (name) up to xxx since he didn't get a bump in pay this past year. He started here doing this work but has gained more responsibilities and I'd like to keep him happy here."

This guy started 5 days after I started in 2013 and I've gone through the same thing (gaining a ton more responsibilities than I got hired for.

So there's that :/

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Most Helpful Guy

  • If you have a bachelors in accounting you should be making more than that. I work as a bookkeeper, and am yet to get my bachelors in managerial accounting, but I'm making 15$ an hour, which is the industry standard for a bookkeeper. Check the industry standard for an accountant of your experience and qualifications, because it sounds like you are being grossly underpaid.

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    • Just checked it myself, entry level accountant median wage is 22-23$/hr.

    • My friend hasn't graduated college, and her internship gives her $16/hr. At a medium sized accounting firm

    • When you work for a small business, you're bound to be somewhat restricted in payscale. Especially if they aren't particularly well off. Most of the work I do is for smaller S corps that find it a lot cheaper to just hire someone to do the work for them thirrdparty rather than keep their own in house.

      Try getting work at a firm instead of working as the accountant for a company, they tend to pay better.

What Girls Said 8

  • I've been at a job for a month and I'm basically running the place, but I'm leaving sometime this month because a bridge is shutting down. I only get paid $7.75/hr. I am pretty excited to leave but I hate that the bridge is shutting down. It took 8 minutes to get to work and my boyfriends house. Now it's going to take at least 30 minutes to get there!
    They don't want me to go but I'm not getting paid enough to stay.

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  • Never feel guilty about leaving a job.. Your worth is evident in the amount of pay.. The rest is lip service.
    Have you tried to negotiate for a raise? This is all about business there is no place for emotions

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  • Give them at least a 2 week notice so that they can find someone else to do what you do. Even offer to search for a suitable replacement.

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  • Where do you live that $15/hr makes it impossible to save up to move out of your parents house and support yourself? Methinks you're spending money where you don't need to be spending money and shooting yourself in the foot.

    However if you feel underpaid and overworked then quit if you can afford it. You're only setting yourself back if you don't have another job lined up.

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    • $1K in student loans/car payments a month. Rent is $900/month on average

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    • Combined. That's what I mean I'm looking up other jobs

    • Then keep searching, but don't quit until you've got a better one. The guilt will go away once you realize you're doing it for your benefit. You don't owe them shit.

  • It is time to say good bye. Business is businnes. No emotions. And you are not getting what you deserve. Money we all work for; sad but true.
    Stay until you find a better job. Then go.

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  • You are free to do whatever you want but be happy you are making $15 an hour. Not many people are in this country and would love that. My boyfriend's dad was a CPA. Best of luck

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  • Nah leave them... they're just taking advantage of you for cheap labour.

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  • wow i thought in usa accounting degree get well paid?

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What Guys Said 11

  • In the game of life, you have to do what's good for you. You've been honest with them about your goals and ambition. If what they're offering you won't suffice or at least create a game plan to retain you... you need to move on.

    "I really want to be an auditor and am studying for my CPA right now-took one test and will take another in a month or so. CPAs make at least 60K!!"

    Go for it man, never settle. You feel idle right now and it will only gradually get worst.

    awesome.

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  • your essentially their book keeper and making what you can expect to make doing that job, the small family business I worked at for years when I was younger had a stay at home mom do that job part time. Perhaps you have become overqualified for that job now that you've got some experience to go with your education?

    You may have to move on to move up, don't feel bad about this!! No one can fault you for chasing what you want in life and if they do it's them who has the problem. Also you may be ready for a job with more responsibility but try not to feel down when people are being dicks about giving you the chance to do those jobs. Also make sure you negotiate when talking pay and benefits!! this is something lots of people neglect to do, to their own misfortune.

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  • Try to answer these questions and consult other experienced working (or used to) in your company:
    - Would this work provide a good boost to your future profession of goals? OR Does it provide a good income for you to collect money THEN start going after your goals?
    - Have you searched other options? OR it takes all your time to search to other options?
    - Do you believe in this companies work and it is vision? What are the ways they are taking to do that? (including how they treat you and other employees)

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  • Do not fall for the guilt trip. It's just a way to keep you there for cheap. If they find a cheaper way they will get id of you.

    What is the most important is your future. That is more important than making money right now. If your current job gets you the experience you need stick with it. If you do stay constantly let hem know that there you are wanted in other companies even if you are not. They may want to raise your salary.

    By the way I do believe it's better to have experience in different companies than just one.

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  • Nah man, look out for yourself first!

    If u find a better gig, put in your two weeks notice and shake hands before u leave.

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  • It depends... but at the end of the day it all comes down to how the job is making you feel. Is it stressfu? l unbearable? Bad management? Shit pay? Then I would leave, thats what I did at least. Just think about what the job is doing to your mental state

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    • It's an easy and safe job... I finish my work then study for my CPA all day

    • Seeing as you are studying as well, I would stay until its over, then make your decision. Especially since it seems like a good enrionment to work in without much stress. You're lucky, many work environments are full of stress and depression, that why I had to leave my last job

  • If you are so important and essential then surely you have a right to ask for a payrise. If they refuse then your choice has been made :)

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  • guilty bro... i'd feel guity, since they need me... id not leave personally :)

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  • Stay there and look for another job. That why you still make money and am looking.

    You're justified in leaving. They should've paid you more if they really wanted you to stay.

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  • Your career is one area of life where you should be selfish. Get a new job--if his business fails because you aren't there, it's his fault, he's a shitty businessman.

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  • Ultimately your loyalty has to be to yourself, as long as you give them time to sort out a replacement and don't drop them in the shit I don't think you should feel guilty.

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