Totally Ticks Me Off Tuesday –

TIME DIFFERENCE and Offshoring

You know, I don’t mind it so much and I get why there’s a time difference. We’re 3 hours ahead of the West Coast, 7 hours behind Egypt, 9.5 hours behind India, 12 hours behind Malaysia/Philippines, etc. I also have, for the most part, accepted Offshoring. For those who don’t know, it’s where companies send their work outside of the US for cheaper pay/labor. I mentioned this in a previous post, that our company is Offshoring some roles and to not just 1 country, but multiple – India, Malaysia, etc. I have come to terms with the fact that the economy sucks and companies are trying to save money, cut costs and corners whereever possible. So, I understand that we had to Offshore, but, here’s what I don’t get…

These companies “offshore”, work for us. Shouldn’t they work OUR time? Turn around time for things have gone down big time. I used to submit something at 10am and get a reply within 10 minutes to at least let me know who’s working on it and then, if it’s not too crazy, it’s usually done the same day or the next day the latest. Now, I don’t even hear back until the next day and forget it if there are questions that need to be answered. For example, we have programmers in Malaysia I work with. They work 9am – 6pm their time. That’s 9pm – 6am our time. It totally ticks me off that I need to log on at night if I need to have a conversation with them or we have to email each other questions/answers.

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To read more people who are Totally Ticked Off, check out Mommy from the Midwest or add your own on your blog and linky-linky on hers 🙂

Effects of the Economy

It’s not news to anyone that the economy sucks at this day and age. We wanted to sell our (“starter”) house in 2008 to move out of state (TX? AZ?) and then plans got put on hold because what do you know, the market plummeted and we didn’t want to take a loss so we’re still here.

A few of our friends and family members have been laid off, found a new job and laid off again. One couple we’re good friends, we’ll call them Mizter and Mizz, were laid off at one point at the same time (for a month). They had car payments and a mortgage and were planning on starting their family. Mizter was laid off in September and Mizz in December. Mizter found a new job in late January while Mizz was jobless for almost 8 months. She finally just got hired, on a part-time contractual basis, late last week. Mizter just got laid off again at the same time Mizz got hired 😦 We also know someone who hasn’t found a job since she got laid off in March of 2008.

I thank God that I still have my job, as much as I have/will complain about it. One of my biggest complaints before was that we had to let go of people and hire some out of the country, you know, “Offshoring”. It felt like a slap in the face when we had to train these new people to do our work because essentially, I felt like I was training them to do my job which would be taken from me one day. Luckily, we have some clients who are not adept to letting their work go out and wants their work and data to stay on US Soil.

Just to give you a quick prespective on this shock of Offshoring on myself (and the rest of my team), in my 10 year tenure at this company, there was a point that we had 16 or 18 people on our team, “onshore”. After layoffs and others finding different opportunies, there are 3 of us left with another 10 “offshore”. Eventually, I got over my grumbles over “Offshoring” and had to see it as an opportunity for me to keep my job, but still feel bad for the ones that left with no choice but to leave.

Yesterday, work told us (by the way, pDaddy and I work for the same company, but in different departments…Also, he goes into the office, I stay home) that they had to do a 4% reduction in our pay until June 2010 and in exchange will give us an extra 2 weeks of vacation. With news of Mizter’s recent layoff fresh in my mind, I wasn’t initially ticked off, but didn’t even get all bent out shape about it. They say they’re doing this now because our clients have been affected as well and asked for discounts/savings and in order to keep those clients, they need to cut costs. Here we all were, waiting for our bonus numbers or merit increases. Ahhh, how the world turns.

Still, I need/have to look at this in a positive way:

  1. We get an extra 2 weeks of vacation which totals to 6 weeks now!
  2. We don’t need to bother with the hassle of filling out unemployment forms
  3. I don’t have to look for a job that will allow me to work from home and be with my girls.
  4. And of course, we still have jobs that allow us to pay our bills on time and pay for vacations. Now, we just have to figure out a good time to take these extra weeks because it’s “Use it or Lose it” AND we’re both so very busy that’s even hard to take off. We’re going to be off for 3 weeks and that was tough to get buy-in for.

I really hope the economy turns around quickly. We’re ok, but there are so many not as fortunate as us. I think of Mizz and Mizter and how they just can’t catch a break and want to start a family so badly. I think of our other friend who hasn’t worked until March of 2008. I think about our house and how badly we want to sell it, but I’m glad we still have a house and we are NOT forced to sell it.