Not sure how well this works, but it sure is not intuitive for anyone who’s been in business for more than a couple of years.
I have not worked for a “kind” company, since leaving KAI in 1994. They were a tiny company where you knew everyone, and had a personal relationship with everyone in the company, boss, subordinate, or peer. The ability to relate to others mattered, and affected progress. When I announced my departure, the president told me he really thought I would be one of the “last to leave”. That struck a chord with me, because it sounded to me like he thought that company would go under eventually.
Where I work now, I’ve spoken to my department head a grand total of 4 times. One phone interview, one face-to-face interview, one post-hire visit (3 months later), and one phone call attempt to calm my fears about the uncertainty of the future, where he instructed me to apply for the full time position they will hire for next month. I don’t feel like I have an effective communication channel to management, to provide any feedback at all.
I’ve begun applying for other jobs, which I probably should have started last month. Even though I was hired on a “six month try before you buy” contract, they will be terminating anyone they don’t want to keep in November, before my 6 month contract ends. I’m not even really sure what a six month contract means anymore.
Even if I had any legal way to guarantee my income for the last month of my 6 month contract, they haven’t been “kind” in any way they dealt with any of us contractors competing for the last three full-time positions they announced in September. They deliberately choose NOT tell us which of us they were going to keep, and after four weeks, they appear to be being blindsided because most of the contractors have accepted positions elsewhere, and announced they are leaving. Because of their lousy management skills, there are more people leaving than there are positions to fill now.
What a incredibly stupid move NOT announcing hiring decisions ASAP turned out to be. For two months, we have had to work with lame ducks who are unmotivated, and are only still there because they want the severance pay they get if they hang out until the end. This does not improve anyone’s employee moral. Even if I really am eventually offered one of the few full-time positions left, as I’ve been verbally promised, we’ll still be short-handled on third shift, for the near future.
How do I honestly tell the next guy we hire he can rely on having a job when his/her six month contract ends? When I applied for this position, the contracting firm told me it was a “good company” that hired most contractors. I no longer believe think that was true, then, or now. A good company doesn’t outsource their entire IT department to an Indian contracting firm, and, at the same time, ask you to stick around, just in case that deal doesn’t work out. That sounds like an awful spot to be stuck in. If the Indian company works out (which I have heard it generally never does), we’re liekly out of a job in a year or two anyway, and if it doesn’t, we’re left to pick up the pieces with far fewer talented IT people who understand how anything works. Ugh.
If you think this practice is reserved for weak leaders, nothing could be further from the truth.