Work woes

i’m on a 0 hours contract and in the last month at work:

  • the head of menswear booked both permanent members of staff off for holiday on a Saturday* and didn’t check anyone else was available, meaning i was the only person in that dept on the busiest day of the week, when a family were known to be coming in for a full school uniform fitting (took 1 1/2 hours of my full attention). they eventually got someone else to help me for most of the day, but it was the owner’s wife who doesn’t have much shop floor experience and i had to help her with some basic stuff. [*IT WASN’T EVEN FOR ANYTHING SPECIFIC HE JUST FANCIED A DAY OFF FFS]
  • on 2 occasions i’ve turned up for shifts written in on my ‘personal hours planner’, only to find out that they were mistakes. The first: head of ladieswear got her months mixed up and wrote me in for February instead of March; the second (yesterday): same colleague booked me in because she had requested holiday for those days, the holiday time wasn’t granted, and she forgot to cross those hours off my planner. didn’t get an apology from her for either occasion, and while yesterday the owner apologised to me for that cock-up, he also tried to pretend i’d missed where it had been crossed out (it had definitely not been crossed out when i’d checked it, and i check it every time i’m in).
  • got a text from a co-worker today saying i was meant to be in this afternoon but the head of menswear didn’t bother to mention it to me, write it down or basically do anything about it.

i’m not overreacting to think this is utter bullshit and they’re properly fucking me around, am i? even if it’s incompetence rather than malice. so how do i approach the management about this? is an ultimatum (‘if i keep getting messed around i’ll hand in my notice’ type ultimatum) a bad idea? they need me more than i need them, but given my job-hunting failures so far idk if i want to test my luck. mind you this would give me more time to focus on finishing my course and looking for a not-shit permanent job.

tbf you’re pretty screwed on a zero hours contract. only real solution is to #votecorbyn


I think you should approach it pretty-much as you’ve explained it to us: dates, times, details, impact on you. I’m sure that there have to be better employment options than this one (and actually, as you say, maybe being out of work would be better than being dicked around on a zero hours contract).

Can I use this thread to have a brief moan, calling out PEOPLE WHO, every year, wait til the last week of February to book half of their annual leave (and leave their colleagues in the lurch*)?

*unable to spend 75% of their working day on the internet

main woe is the eternal freelancer one, nobody ever pays on time and treats you like a cunt for asking to actually get paid for work you’ve done

Have you asked for the money for those hours they messed you around?

I think I mentioned it before but we were being cut out of loads of meetings that would definitely require input from developers, a lot of the time that input was being supplied by a couple of external companies. It was really weird and hard to tell if this was the usual negligence of communication or if there was something more intentional (i.e. potential redundancies) behind it. One boss left this time last year, another was here for 2 months, then he left one day and hasn’t been replaced since. Apparently the gap might be filled with one of those external companies. I have no problem with a redundancy, but I’d like them to tell me. I even went as far as to ask the second in command why we are still here (which was probably a mistake).

too long, didn’t read

also, the main attraction (and reason for not getting paid as much as you could elsewhere) about working here was the lacking of stress and politics which isn’t the case anymore.

I think this thread should be resurrected as somewhere for all of us to talk about work issues. We all have them from time to time, after all.

At my workplace, a design department in a multi-national company, the amount of work we’ve been getting has declined. The design teams at other locations are busy enough. An outside company that we subcontract to, which is based in India, is getting lots of design work, even though they’re not very good, are constantly late, and have a high rate of jobs going to print and then coming back to them with mistakes to correct.

But the Indians are a lot cheaper. Desk space and associated costs in the offices in Oxford, Yorkshire, Essex, Manchester, etc. are cheaper than us lot sitting here in Central London.

Except that our team is THE best at the job out of all of them. The lowest rate of jobs being stopped at the print stage to have errors fixed. The quickest turnaround, often same day. We deal with a fair amount of secure materials and a lot of people who write the copy are in the same building as us - so for security reasons it makes sense to have us here working on them.

But all this year so far we’ve been doing half a day’s work every day, being told we can leave early quite often. One person was made redundant back in March. One of our team who lives outside London now works at the Oxford building two days a week (she can drive there as quickly as it takes her to get here).

This morning I just discovered (though he doesn’t know I know) that our department manager has started job hunting.

So… it sounds to me as though I ought to start doing the same and be ready to get a new job as soon as I have the redundancy money in my bank account, right?

If you think that redundancies might be on the horizon at your place then you’ve got nothing to lose by at the VERY least ensuring your CV is ready to go. As in ready to go instantly.

Also nothing to lose by putting the feelers out with some agencies, if that’s the road you prefer to go down for jobs.

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Loool at OP pervo, such tame stuff. This is how that job ended up going:

Happily my woes are v different now and involve “Oh no my manager saw a load of FB chat windows open when he was showing me how to use the ad manager” and “oh shit my manager had to add me on fb for work purpose and might have seen a photoshopped pic of me marrying Harry Maguire”


I think that’s absolutely right. I’ve been updating my CV here and there as I go, when I have learned new skills etc. But it can always do with checking. And, yes, fortunately I kept all the contacts for agencies from last time around. Will probably be good to contact them now and let them know I might soon be looking for something,

Yeah I mean you should always have an up to date CV as best practice but, let’s face it, it only takes an afternoon to sort it out really doesn’t it.

Things could change quickly in your place positively though - workflow in creative agencies/departments is variable as you know and it’s baked into the business model. On the flipside, it’s also in their business models to wield the knife very, very quickly. Just be ready I’d say and no harm in having a look at the market to see what else is out there.

We’re a design department within a large- 30,000+ employees worldwide - company and all our “customers” are within the company. It just feels to me like management are deliberately running us down, the same way the government is running down the NHS, just so they can say we’re not needed.

I wouldn’t have thought it would be that strategic.

You’d think not. But I can’t figure out why the company is as busy as ever but our workload has decreased by 70%.

Yeah. Mega-companies like the one you work for only work at two paces re: assessing department effectiveness - instant decision making or like an oil tanker turning round at sea. Probably the latter in your case.

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And we’ve now just received an email ‘inviting’ us to a department meeting this coming Tuesday.

Email just received from our department manager:

Hi all,
Even fewer jobs on the workflow today than we had yesterday.
You are all to finish an hour earlier today than you otherwise should.
Enjoy the afternoon*

Do you have a Traffic/Workflow Manager at your place? If so I can imagine they’re actually enjoying the peace…

He’s looking for a new job. A colleague overheard him talking about it on the phone today.

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