Jump to content

So change never happends public sector


shootingstar
 Share

Recommended Posts

hmmm yea.

There have been cuts or job retransformations in the last 15 months. Yes, people are let go suddenly.  Next day no one knows where person went.  Or they are given a different choice, to decide in 48 hrs.  It's just the news media doesn't report it much at all. There was hermorraging actually happening before and after a municipal election last year.  So this is the 2nd govn't org. I've been with.

It did happen with another govn't. I worked for...huge swaths of people let go or people disappear into woodwork of organization.  Or just people switching jobs within shorter time periods.  Govn't is not what people think it was like 25 yrs. ago. 

The cycle of change is happening in organizational pockets, is happening abit faster with some major disruptions with a few strong-armed managers.  ****What is noticeable is use of contract companies/short-term contractors for major long-term, enterprise systems...if this is used too heavily, it really weakens building internal staff technical expertise long-term.  After all, the contractors.....leave. Sometimes they are hired guns for specific deliverables with a corporate plan for sustainment, it can be helpful.

 

 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

8 hours ago, shootingstar said:

What is noticeable is use of contract companies/short-term contractors for major long-term, enterprise systems...if this is used too heavily, it really weakens building internal staff technical expertise long-term.  After all, the contractors.....leave. Sometimes they are hired guns for specific deliverables with a corporate plan for sustainment, it can be helpful.

This. In fact there is no internal staff with technical expertise where I work. Contractors do 99% of the work. Most of us work one-year contracts that have 4 option years.

A couple of years ago they brought in another contracting company who were to automate everything. Hired guns. They told us to start looking for other jobs. Some people did. Well the new contractor over-promised and under-delivered and were fired after Congress found out. That left a mess for those of us who remained to clean up. Then our contract was up on October 1st and because the other contractor was supposed to take over, there was no work done on renewing our contract. There was plenty of talk about a contract extension or a new contract, but no ink on paper. Therefore starting around August there was another mass exodus of contractors. People have mortgages and bills therefore can't wait on promises that might not happen.

It's still a mess. They hire new people who often leave in less that 6 months. The job market is competitive right now and the contract extension doesn't have enough money in it to match wages with the private sector.  They don't even have money enough to pay overtime. Some people will work extra free hours, but not me.

  • Awesome 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

16 minutes ago, JerrySTL said:

This. In fact there is no internal staff with technical expertise where I work. Contractors do 99% of the work. Most of us work one-year contracts that have 4 option years.

A couple of years ago they brought in another contracting company who were to automate everything. Hired guns. They told us to start looking for other jobs. Some people did. Well the new contractor over-promised and under-delivered and were fired after Congress found out. That left a mess for those of us who remained to clean up. Then our contract was up on October 1st and because the other contractor was supposed to take over, there was no work done on renewing our contract. There was plenty of talk about a contract extension or a new contract, but no ink on paper. Therefore starting around August there was another mass exodus of contractors. People have mortgages and bills therefore can't wait on promises that might not happen.

It's still a mess. They hire new people who often leave in less that 6 months. The job market is competitive right now and the contract extension doesn't have enough money in it to match wages with the private sector.  They don't even have money enough to pay overtime. Some people will work extra free hours, but not me.

This is pretty much my firm.  I was hired to run a department primarily due to my experience as a contractor.  My "staff" consists of two employees and about 25 contract staff.  The primary contractor does what I did for 20 years.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

49 minutes ago, JerrySTL said:

This. In fact there is no internal staff with technical expertise where I work. Contractors do 99% of the work. Most of us work one-year contracts that have 4 option years.

A couple of years ago they brought in another contracting company who were to automate everything. Hired guns. They told us to start looking for other jobs. Some people did. Well the new contractor over-promised and under-delivered and were fired after Congress found out. That left a mess for those of us who remained to clean up. Then our contract was up on October 1st and because the other contractor was supposed to take over, there was no work done on renewing our contract. There was plenty of talk about a contract extension or a new contract, but no ink on paper. Therefore starting around August there was another mass exodus of contractors. People have mortgages and bills therefore can't wait on promises that might not happen.

It's still a mess. They hire new people who often leave in less that 6 months. The job market is competitive right now and the contract extension doesn't have enough money in it to match wages with the private sector.  They don't even have money enough to pay overtime. Some people will work extra free hours, but not me. 

Is the answer more government employees doing the work (lazy bastids!), paying contractors more (lots more!), or ....?

I feel like the moves over the past thirty years I have been an adult have been to push more government folks out, bring in more contractors, and complain more about how bad government is doing their job. Here in the DC area, I know great federal employees, awful federal employees, great gov't contractors, horrendous gov't contractors, great private sector employees, and horrible private sector employees.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

42 minutes ago, Razors Edge said:

Is the answer more government employees doing the work (lazy bastids!), paying contractors more (lots more!), or ....?

The best answer is to run things like a private sector company. I've worked for both and the private sector usually does things much smarter because they need to make a profit. Of course this would be impossible for government as politicians put their fingers into everything creating stupid laws and rules. I worked on one program that Congress mandated decades ago which probably costs around $100 million a year and does little to nothing to solve the problem that Congress wanted fix because what Congress wanted fixed wasn't what was broken.

As far as federal employees, I've seen all too many that makes me thankful that there are government jobs. I'd hate to see what would happen if they were unleased on the private sector. I've worked with bad private sector employees also but they usually don't last all that long with the exception being family-owned businesses and the family members. Even that seems to have a way of correcting itself around the 3rd or 4th generation as the company goes out of business; gets sold; or brings in some non-family member to run it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Jerry's comments resonate with me.

My wife feels the stress and the need to work unpaid overtime. She is in no danger of losing her job. Nor is their much hope of advancement.  I tell her why should you kill yourself to make a couple of other guys rich?

If they shortstaff your department, its not your problem, its the company's.

Lest you think I'm an anti-corporate bad attitude guy, trust me I'm not.  Both employees and employers try to cheat the other, and neither should accept it.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

11 hours ago, shootingstar said:

hmmm yea.

There have been cuts or job retransformations in the last 15 months. Yes, people are let go suddenly.  Next day no one knows where person went.  Or they are given a different choice, to decide in 48 hrs.  It's just the news media doesn't report it much at all. There was hermorraging actually happening before and after a municipal election last year.  So this is the 2nd govn't org. I've been with.

It did happen with another govn't. I worked for...huge swaths of people let go or people disappear into woodwork of organization.  Or just people switching jobs within shorter time periods.  Govn't is not what people think it was like 25 yrs. ago. 

The cycle of change is happening in organizational pockets, is happening abit faster with some major disruptions with a few strong-armed managers.  ****What is noticeable is use of contract companies/short-term contractors for major long-term, enterprise systems...if this is used too heavily, it really weakens building internal staff technical expertise long-term.  After all, the contractors.....leave. Sometimes they are hired guns for specific deliverables with a corporate plan for sustainment, it can be helpful.

 

 

 

 

Without making any judgements here to avoid being political, note that Maryland has vacillated among a Tea Party GOP Governor, a very liberal Democrat, and a traditional work-with-the-opposition GOP Governor over the last 16 years and there clearly have been changes in the government!

In Maryland, there is a little more stability in public jobs at the county level because, in the distant past, they made the brilliant decision to organize school systems, police departments, fire departments, libraries, etc. as countywide agencies.  This greatly reduces book costs, expenses for training new personnel, standardizing communications equipment, etc. because the excesses in personnel, equipment, etc. at one place can be moved to a place with a deficiency instead of having to train or buy new.

Consequently, when I was a new teacher with little seniority and the school at which I taught was cutting personnel due to a drop in student population, I got a phone call from the county board of ed. personnel office asking if I'd like to be transferred to the largest school in the state in an above-avg. income area and teach the gifted and talented kids in chemistry and physics. I took it in an instant and held that position until I retired.

 

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 hours ago, JerrySTL said:

The best answer is to run things like a private sector company. I've worked for both and the private sector usually does things much smarter because they need to make a profit. Of course this would be impossible for government as politicians put their fingers into everything creating stupid laws and rules. I worked on one program that Congress mandated decades ago which probably costs around $100 million a year and does little to nothing to solve the problem that Congress wanted fix because what Congress wanted fixed wasn't what was broken.

As far as federal employees, I've seen all too many that makes me thankful that there are government jobs. I'd hate to see what would happen if they were unleased on the private sector. I've worked with bad private sector employees also but they usually don't last all that long with the exception being family-owned businesses and the family members. Even that seems to have a way of correcting itself around the 3rd or 4th generation as the company goes out of business; gets sold; or brings in some non-family member to run it.

I've worked for both govn't and private sector (latter primarily 4 different national and global firms).  

It is getting rarer and rarer to meet/know employees who have worked in govn't for over 35 years.  And some do build a dossier when moving around in different departments/ ministries. There is nothing wrong with that since it depends on the nature of jobs, clients (either/both internal /external clients), different corporate cultures within govn't  and team dynamics, leadership.

What does help sometimes is bill-back between depts. in govn't...which is moving money around but sometimes putting a $$ value on work performed for internal clients, can help.  Sometimes not at all...various divisions of IT are too expensive for some depts. who need it but didn't anticipate in terms of budgeting certain things would develop..

There is often a distinct difference in how govn't depts. operate between...those who have front facing services to the public and others who are support only internal depts. and never deal with public directly.

Anyway, the dept. I worked for changed names twice, restructured some divisions within 7 years.  I know another dept. that is public front-facing, constantly restructures which is not good for staff nor service delivery. 

It helps to have regional/county wide services for certain things:  transit, fire/EMS/police.  I have heard of stories where a fire dept. did not respond because the fire was just few kms. away from the border.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...