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Minor work situation

Discussion in 'Careers, Employment and Professional Development' started by BYTEr, Jan 30, 2020.

  1. BYTEr

    Wise Guy

    Joined: Oct 2, 2004

    Posts: 1,012

    Hi all,

    Situation at work as follows:

    Contract start time is 08:30, contract states we must be ready to work at this time.

    Work are now suggesting that those of us who are clocking in at say 08:26/8:27 aren’t being ready for work by 08:30, despite it being a 20 second walk to our desks from where we clock in.

    Even logging in, opening applications or whatever by 08:30 would be the case most of the time if clocking in at 08:27 unless our PC’s were exceptionally slow at booting up so I don’t really understand why they are now saying this.

    Anyway, anyone else experienced something as stupid as this? My take is that as long as I’m at my desk ready to login by 08:30, I’m not late, although my employer might argue that logging in etc should be on my time, but it doesn’t specifically state that in my contract so I’ll sign in on their time If I wanted too.

    This is mostly a non-issue for me anyway as I’m usually in the office by 08:15 but it’s irked me none-the-less, especially since we’re on 40 hour contracts with the minimum holiday allowance legally, many people also have to stay on for an extra 15-30 mins to ensure all work has completed, I don't see our employer kicking us out right at 17:30 because that's our contracted finish time. Just seems a very un-needed statement from my employer.
  2. JonJ678


    Joined: Dec 22, 2008

    Posts: 10,367

    Location: England

    Are you paid for the time before your shift "starts" where you have to be in the building, and for the extra time at the "end" the shift?

    If no, and anyone is on minimum wage such that this extra time takes them below minimum wage, your company is going to get fined. Sports direct style.

    If you're still over minimum wage I'm not sure there's a consequence. Fairly common to work well over 40 hours on salaried positions.
  3. Quartz


    Joined: Apr 1, 2014

    Posts: 10,461

    Location: Aberdeen

    'Ready to work'? You're ready to work when you arrive at your desk.

    You clearly need PCs that are faster at starting up. Or just leave them on overnight.
  4. MrPotato

    Wise Guy

    Joined: Mar 5, 2017

    Posts: 1,022

    Location: Cambridge

    Penny pinching company. Hope you find a better job.
  5. Rroff

    Man of Honour

    Joined: Oct 13, 2006

    Posts: 67,921

    Heh I remember when this came up at work - and they literally just threw money at people, regardless of what you were earning, to make the problem go away as it would be too hard to work out if anyone had ended up paid under minimum wage due to it or not and some of the big cases had just come up like Sports Direct.
  6. peterwalkley


    Joined: Feb 23, 2009

    Posts: 3,456

    Location: South Wirral

    I would guess this is either someone in management waving a willy around or an edict because a few people have been taking the wee on start time and rather than discipline them directly you are all getting a class detention instead.

    Does the contract actually define what "ready to work" means ? It seems vague and very open to abuse. For example: you are usually up and running in front of your PC at ~ 8:20, what happens if a forced windows update hits you that takes an hour, or the network goes down ? Are you now at fault for being no longer "ready" ?

    What is it that you do that needs such a precise start time ? Call center ?
  7. tom_e

    Man of Honour

    Joined: Dec 26, 2003

    Posts: 26,758

    Location: West mids

    If they want to play that game then make sure you start packing away and shutting down a couple of minutes before your finish time so you're ready to leave bang on.
  8. Haze


    Joined: Jan 10, 2007

    Posts: 3,154

    I guess this is what happens when some of the staff take the ****, everyone has to suffer
  9. Maccy


    Joined: Nov 23, 2004

    Posts: 36,309

    Location: Herts

    Sounds like micro management gone mad, I'd be looking to get out tbh.
  10. sideways14a

    Wise Guy

    Joined: Aug 31, 2017

    Posts: 1,812

    It will be a small number of **** takers who ruined it for everyone else.
    Your best bet would be to round them up and make there life crap :p
  11. lurkio


    Joined: May 20, 2010

    Posts: 2,986

    Location: World

    what a bad place to work in
  12. BYTEr

    Wise Guy

    Joined: Oct 2, 2004

    Posts: 1,012

    There does seem quite a few people who are arriving right on 08:29/08:30, but like I said, its 20 seconds to our desks.

    It’s specifically been said that arriving just before our start time means we are not ready to work at our start time like our contract states, and no, what ‘ready for work’ means is not stated in our contracts.

    The company also has outdated views that the more you work, the more productive you are and expects everyone to stay on to get the job done.

    All job requests sent by clients before our finish time must be processed before we can go home which isn't stated in our contracts of course, it just states our finish time.

    We are very well paid, so I doubt we’d be anywhere near going under the hourly minimum wage, but I’m sure the minutes of overtime vastly outweighs those clocking in after 08:30, for myself, as I work in the top technical team, I’m affected the worse as my team are the only ones capable of fixing certain issues so unless it’s a slow day and everything has gone 100% smooth, I’m never out the door on or just after our finish time, we're often still processing the days jobs 30-60 mins after our finish time and It’s practically frowned upon leaving on time.
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2020
  13. Semple


    Joined: Mar 5, 2010

    Posts: 6,208

    Echoing everyone elses points.

    It should be a give and take situation, not take, take, take.

    So in other words, if they're expecting you to already be at your desk and logged on by 8:30, then they should also be expecting you to have logged off regardless of whether work has finished by 5:30. Unless of course they operate some sort of TOIL policy, but from what you've said that sounds unlikely.

    I always remember when i used to work at Currys when i was 16, and on a Saturday we were paid until 18:00 the exact time that the shop closed. Either way it was extremely rare that you left anywhere close to 6 - you always had that one customer who would pop in at 17:58 just to "browse". Most saturdays you were lucky to have been searched and signed out by 20 past. So in the end a lot of us used to take the **** and have a couple of 10 minute breaks during the day in addition to lunch to make up for this time.
  14. vanpeebles


    Joined: Aug 22, 2004

    Posts: 6,428

    Location: County Durham

    I once worked at a place where I would arrive an hour before my start time, and go home 5 mins early to catch a bus. I got pulled up on it and was told the work day only started once the boss did. Needless to say, I didn't stay long :D
  15. dowie


    Joined: Jan 29, 2008

    Posts: 46,760

    I’d ignore it tbh... I mean how can they take any action as long at you’re there by the start time?

    Is there some critical reason to even be there by 8:30 as opposed to 8:35 etc... like potentially urgent phone calls being diverted to your phone at 8:30 on the dot?

    Otherwise it seems very silly, I’m sure you can point out that you don’t drop everything and leave exactly on time etc...
  16. bJN


    Joined: Nov 23, 2009

    Posts: 3,381

    Location: Norwich

    This happened where I work. Thankfully, the employees en masse decided to be ready for an 8:30 start (takes 5 minutes to get ready, overalls etc), and as soon as 16:30 came along it was overalls off and out the gate. Management soon realised that placing good faith in people means you'll get better results, people staying to finish up jobs rather than abandoning it overnight to carry on in the morning. Now they just pull-up repeat offenders that leave earlier than they should or turn up late.

    Personally, my working day now starts before and ends after all the office staff, so I manage it myself and will happily leave 10 minutes early if I started 10 minutes early. And similarly if I finish 30 minutes late I'll just slowly use that as a few 5 minutes early leaves throughout the week.
  17. A2Z


    Joined: May 9, 2005

    Posts: 8,179

    Location: London

    The time it takes to start up the PC should be in your time and not the companies time? Has to be a joke surely.

    If they want to be petty like that then everyone should be ready to walk out the door at the exact time their contract states is the finish time. Personally I think anyone who works even 1 minute over their contracted hours for nothing in return is a fool but I know some people find it hard to say 'no' and think because it's 'expected' to stay they can't do anything about it.

    Thankfully in my role now, if I get taken off late by a colleague, they will give me the time back next time, or if not possible my manager will make sure I leave early one day to get the time back. We don't work for free.
  18. Russinating


    Joined: Dec 27, 2005

    Posts: 15,740

    Location: Bristol

    Bit stupid. We ask our team to get in for 8.45 to start at 9 so there's time to chat, catchup, make tea and coffees etc. We're all in the kitchen until 9 and then head to our desks. If someone's late then they just have less time to faff about, and only if it was multiple times would we care.

    They other day a few of them decided to put on a big breakfast for someone's birthday with poached eggs and sourdough, crossaints, mimmosas etc and we didn't get to our desks until about 20 mins past :shrug:.

    Are you allowed to login at 8.59 and then go make a coffee and have a dump? Of course you are, so it's stupid.
  19. mrbell1984


    Joined: Aug 9, 2008

    Posts: 24,251

    If a company wants to play by rule then the employees MUST play by rule. Once this sort of stuff starts to happen employees get very upset and angry at the company in question. Most leave shortly after the company starts to do these kinds of tricks.

    Also ask them if IT can put something in place so that your computers are at the login screen for 8.30 on the dot.
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2020
  20. OspreyO


    Joined: Dec 12, 2006

    Posts: 3,234

    Years ago I Had a job in Germany where we had to start at 6.30am but had to wait in a room from 6.15 to 6.30 so we started on time. We did the same going home. Was factory shift work so maybe that's different.

    In IT you randomly get a manager who thinks clock watching is efficiency. They generally don't have metrics on productivity but know when you're in 5 mins late. Ironically I'm very bad at time keeping but good at automating tasks. I literally chop days off time consuming tasks.

    One our mangers recently promoted decided to start chastising our most expert contractors think guys with 20yrs experience, over tea breaks. They've now work strictly to the clock and cut about 30-60 mins that they used to do extra every day. It's probably the nudge some of them needed to move on.

    Ironically we have a problem getting developers and it's impossible to hold people with lots of experience. We can't afford them. So if these guys leave we have no one to take over their work.