July, The Month of Economic Turmoil

I work for a big federal government contractor, and they recently lost the contract for the project I’m working on, because a competitor swooped in and bid less. (The federal government is usually obligated to award contracts to the lowest bidder who is technically capable of performing the work.)

The point is that if nothing else happens, July 29th will be my last day of work, and I will have done my part to shrink the federal deficit.

But there’s no reason to panic about unemployment just yet. It’s a rapidly-evolving situation, and new information comes out daily. For one thing, my company is planning to "protest" the award. Realistically, it probably won’t amount to anything, but there’s a small chance that the decision will be reversed. (UPDATE: This didn’t happen.)

Secondly, there is a nearly 100% chance that the competitor in question will offer me (and my co-workers) a job to continue working on the project. (UPDATE: This did happen.) (Otherwise, the project will probably crash and burn almost immediately.)

Thirdly, if everything else falls through and I’m out of a job after the 29th, I should be eligible for 4 weeks of severance pay. My expenses are very low right now, so that plus my savings will carry me over until I can find a new job.

And despite all the dire economic news from the media, I’m not especially worried about finding another developer job. In fact I’m strongly tempted to explore more freelance-type work for a while. There probably won’t be a better time for me to try that.

In other news, it’s really frickin’ hot in Richmond again. This seems to happen practically every year now.