Wednesday, January 02, 2008

New Year. Old Patterns.

The first day of work after New Years has consistently been the busiest at the Help Desk. Mondays' are the busiest of any weekday because people can't remember their passwords over a weekend, so multiply that by two weeks and you can get an idea of how the new year starts off.

And it was even better because Management somehow thought that with New Years Day in the middle of the week (as if Tuesday is the middle of the week) that people weren't really going to be coming back to work until the following week. I've been here for eight years and that's never happened. January 2nd is the big day.

So, we were understaffed and got pounded. It wasn't as bad as some days, say, when branch systems go down, but it was pretty heavy. My call volume went to 109 calls for the day. The next highest analysts were in the mid to low 80s.

And this happens pretty much with every holiday. There was the "part-time people can earn some extra hours the day after a holiday" policy. Then the "everyone must work overtime the day after a holiday" policy. The "please volunteer to work overtime the day after a holiday" policy. This is the "Holy shit, we didn't think it was going to be like this the day after a holiday so please, oh please, work overtime" policy. One might think that after 8 years someone would have noticed something of a pattern developing as to what sort of call volume we get the days after a holiday.

But it is, of course, systemic. The "just in time" manufacturing model applied to service. Just enough people be paid to manage the standard, average service levels but, should something actually go wrong, we get completely pounded. Way to cut those corners, guys. Way to set that bottom line.

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