23 July 2009

Free Ice Cream And Sandwiches

The place where I work has weathered the economic meltdown storms a little better than most. They have had to resort to some scheduling trickery and other things, but they managed not to lay any of their permanent employees off. Temps, however, weren't so lucky.

They were up front with us over the scheduling things, and we grumbled about it but since they were honest it was easier to take. This round they aren't playing things so straight.

We get annual raises and also quarterly and annual bonuses depending on how production has gone. We have gotten bonuses for the last 2 years that I have worked here. Now they are cutting the annual raises.

They tried to sell this as a positive thing, saying they were going to put the money they would have spent on raises into the bonus pool, so the bonuses will roughly double. For someone who got an $800 bonus last year, the bonuses will be $1600 instead.

This sounds good on the surface, but for someone making $11.00 an hour (their mythical figure) the expected raise would equal $1500 over the course of the year. They point out that this hypothetical employee will end up netting an extra Benjamin out of the deal.

What they conveniently leave out (and what they expect the employee base to be too stupid to figure out on their own, apparently) is that this hypothetical employee could have figured on an extra $2300.00 in their paychecks over the course of the year when you add the pay hike plus the old bonus figure of $800. Instead of netting an extra hundred, this poor hypothetical sap is getting played to the tune of 7 bills or more (considering that bonuses are tied to production goals, which the average working stiff has little to do with).

What bothers me is the fact they are trying to sell this crap as chocolate ice cream. If they had just said "Here's a crap sandwich, everyone gets to take a bite" it may have been easier to take. They played straight with us at first, and they should have kept on that line. They chose not to do that this time.

This mirrors the current situation with legislative actions such as cap and tax, health care, and the proposed second stimulus. The Congress and the President is hoping that we are too stupid to figure out these things will end up costing us all dearly in the end.

At least the Congress and the current administration never tried playing it straight first.

2 comments:

Hammer said...

Some folks whine too much when all the cards are put on the table.

Personally I prefer the truth.

This is the first year in 100 that the wife's company is skipping bonuses and raises altogether.

They say that it has prevented layoffs.

Not sure if that makes complete sense or not.

Larry said...

I can see where it would save them a bit so they wouldn't have to have mass layoffs, and I would prefer they be honest and up-front about it rather than try to snow us.
They didn't have any reason not to, since everyone from the execs on down are forgoing raises this year.