June 13, 2000
My Employer Sucks
by razzor <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Even though my employer, a University, likes to think it is a more technologically advanced educational facility, it sucks. It is lacking in a few areas. Instead of lacking technology, this so-called top ranked facility is in dire need of change in many areas, such as more available parking, less gouging of students, less inter-departmental politics, and a more competitive pay scale.
My Employer has been spending much money, time and effort building better facilities for an ever-growing university population that includes students, staff, and faculty. Over the last two and a half years, the University has done away with several parking lots to make room for new buildings such as the Computer Science building, the trucking building, outdoor workers, the mail room, and now the FASS building. These buildings are supposedly made to make room for the larger student, staff, and faculty bodies. Unfortunately, what the university seems to misunderstand is that with the larger student, staff, and faculty bodies come more cars, trucks, vans, and other modes of transportation. For the last several years, staff has been noticing a vast lack of parking and is having to walk great distances to their offices or even park off campus on side streets. This is not acceptable. Many long-term staff will still be working at the university when the students have long gone. The solution to this is simple. With more people attending the university, parking is a must. With more parking, security forces will be able to stop spending half their day handing out parking tickets and spend more time working with the public to make the university an even safer place for the students, staff and Faculty.Pfft!
Food pricing at the university level is obscene. Students are expected to pay even larger amounts of tuition every year. On top of this, if the students plan on eating anywhere on campus, they can expect to pay up to about forty percent more for things that they could buy around the corner or a block away. For example, at a normal soft drink dispensing machine anywhere in the city, if you wanted to buy a bottle of Pepsi, it would cost you $1.25. However, if you choose to buy this same bottle of pop on campus it would cost you $1.50. Not to mention a regular chocolate bar that would cost someone in a typical corner store at most seventy-five cents, this same bar on campus would cost a student $1.10. This is not acceptable; the government should try to stop this kind of monopolizing of one's dollar on campus. One item should not cost such a vast difference just because someone travels past an invisible campus boundary.
An Even Bigger Pfft!
Inter-departmental politics is an ever growing hot topic. What seems to be a simple thing to the outside world can become a rather large and heated issue. Instead of departments trying to work together to serve the public in one fashion, there is always a jurisdiction issue, and no one wants to deal with someone else's problem. The helpdesk will only deal with software issues. Hardware services will only deal with hardware problems. If, for some reason, a software problem causes a hardware problem, or vice-versa, no one seems to want to deal with the situation. The result is an unhappy customer. Although this situation hardly ever arises, mainly due to the competence of the employees in these departments, the problems that could arise are countless. On the other hand, the Network Operations Center is very different. To what extent does ones jurisdiction follow? The answer to this question is always changing. For example, if someone's computer suffers from an attack, several people are affected: the target of the attack, the network that is connected to it, and the other users that are attached to the network. This is, it seems, a pretty simple example, as the Network Operations Center is responsible for dealing with the reports. On the other hand, if a computer in our network has suffered from the evil hand of a hacker, we wonder who is responsible for the reports, contact of authorities and so on. The Network Operations Center will not touch this one. It is the soul responsibility of the System administrator. In some cases, this makes sense due to the large size of the network, but it all could be solved quicker and less painfully if the departments work together and in some cases merge.
Pfft! The private sector, though volatile, seems to keep their best employees longer and happier than that of government agencies. The most favorable opinion for this is more due to the average salaries in the private sector being approximately double if not more. Other reasons are the medical benefits. The private sector usually covers all deductions and has a far superior medical package than anything My Employer University has thought of. They cover things such as private rooms, specialty care, alternative medicines, and laser eye surgery. If the university could follow the lead of the private sector, it could provide a better competitive incentive to the university employees, and I am sure the university would find fewer employees traveling south of the border to make a life.
That is a double Pfft!
The university would have a better track record of keeping their best employees and being able to have the finest minds working for them instead of their private sector competitors if they simply could solve the majority of the problems that they have which includes the above four topics.
Come on let me hear ya ... P-F-F-T!
Published: June 13, 2000