Author Topic: How to get Human Resources to provide supplies? UPDATE #73  (Read 21492 times)

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Sophia

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Re: How to get Human Resources to provide supplies? tiny UPDATE #23
« Reply #45 on: July 16, 2014, 01:16:40 PM »
I would escalate up the chain, and then just start taking what was needed off her desk, or from wherever she used stuff. 
So, if the paper towels were out in a bathroom, I would take them from the one she used.  If I needed a pen, I would take a company pen from her desk. 

Giving you 5 paperclips makes me wonder how many she has in her desk? 

Redneck Gravy

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Re: How to get Human Resources to provide supplies? tiny UPDATE #23
« Reply #46 on: July 16, 2014, 02:12:01 PM »
Miranova I respectfully disagree that it is "expected" for teachers to purchase their own supplies.  I think it's "accepted". 

Taxpayers don't like it and we would like to see something done about it.  The media would be a great outlet to let us know what is "really" going on at some of our schools.  I know you buy a lot of your own supplies, how are we to know what's available for teachers and what isn't?

I donated money every year for both of my kids' teacher's classroom library.  It's still going on, geez at what point do teacher's have a sufficient library in their classroom? 

I show up for a drama club meeting and I'm told that we can use the copier and school paper to run our drama programs.  Well, that's great but why isn't the drama department using their own funds for their programs and why am I having to fund an elementary teacher's classroom library - a simple switch right here fixes that problem.

I don't disagree with you that it's a mess; having seen some of the waste and misappropriation I, as a taxpayer, would like to see some of that cleaned up.  And quite frankly with every darn fund raiser on the planet, why isn't there one for teacher's supplies, I, as a parent, would like to see that!

I worked at a printing company for over 20 years - high school A has their Baccalaureate programs paid by their PTA, high school B has their same programs paid out of the school district fund.  Never got an explanation for that one.   

     

Morty'sCleaningLady

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Re: How to get Human Resources to provide supplies? tiny UPDATE #23
« Reply #47 on: July 16, 2014, 02:52:02 PM »
So much for Jason buying off HR Lady with cheesecake -- now the office is without coffee.  (Meanwhile, the partners are having a golf day.)  As a tea drinker, I'm going to sit back and watch.  (Coffee and hot water are supplied.  I bring my own tea bags.  May be locking the desk drawers tonight!)
Formerly Mrs.Bart

ladyknight1

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Re: How to get Human Resources to provide supplies? tiny UPDATE #23
« Reply #48 on: July 16, 2014, 04:12:11 PM »
Thirty five years ago I worked at a Fortune Five hundred Company. If you needed a new pen you had to ask the VP's secretary, who sat in front of the supply room. Instead of getting up and getting a new box of pens for you, she would hand you the one she was currently using, bite marks and all. She did this to everyone.  :o

Ten years ago, I was working at a manufacturing plant that announced they would no longer be purchasing office supplies. We bought our own pens, highlighters, paperclips, staples, staplers, etc. I was overjoyed when the bank gave me a huge box of used paperclips.  :)

At my next job, I was used to purchasing my own office supplies so I kept a stash handy in a backpack. I did expect them to supply hand soap and paper products.
 
Eventually I had a boss that put new meaning into the word "cheap". I ended up folding paper and using elastic bands to hold my computer reports together when we ran out of file folders.  :-\ ???

When I first started working at this office of a very large university, we had a director of finance who kept all paper, pens, batteries, USB flash drives and car keys in her safe. If she was out for the day, you had no access to any of those. We didn't cry when she retired. Everything but the USB flash drives is free access now.

AfleetAlex

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Re: How to get Human Resources to provide supplies? tiny UPDATE #23
« Reply #49 on: July 17, 2014, 10:43:02 AM »
You know, in reading this topic and an article on CNN about a company that restricts its employees off-break restroom stops to six minutes a day, I got to thinking: if you don't trust your employees, why did you hire them??? Seems to me this kind of tight fistedness says you (as a company) don't think too highly of the people YOU brought in, and employees pick up on that.

My company is fantastic about getting you the supplies you need, and I have never ever seen it abused.
I have a chronic case of foot-in-mouth disease.

Morty'sCleaningLady

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Re: How to get Human Resources to provide supplies? tiny UPDATE #23
« Reply #50 on: July 17, 2014, 11:05:34 AM »
You know, in reading this topic and an article on CNN about a company that restricts its employees off-break restroom stops to six minutes a day, I got to thinking: if you don't trust your employees, why did you hire them??? Seems to me this kind of tight fistedness says you (as a company) don't think too highly of the people YOU brought in, and employees pick up on that.


My tiny bladder and addition to staying hydrated cries for those people!
Formerly Mrs.Bart

Coralreef

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Re: How to get Human Resources to provide supplies? tiny UPDATE #23
« Reply #51 on: July 17, 2014, 11:16:27 AM »
You know, in reading this topic and an article on CNN about a company that restricts its employees off-break restroom stops to six minutes a day, I got to thinking: if you don't trust your employees, why did you hire them??? Seems to me this kind of tight fistedness says you (as a company) don't think too highly of the people YOU brought in, and employees pick up on that.

My company is fantastic about getting you the supplies you need, and I have never ever seen it abused.

They could not pay me enough to work for such a company.  Do they supply diapers to their employees, because 6 minutes a day?  How cheap can you get?

OP, when someone holds so tightly to the supplies, it's either a power trip or a hoarding tendency.  Unless she's paying for them with her own money, they belong to the company for company employee use.  She's making people's life difficult for stupid reasons.  Does this behaviour impact customers in any way?  If you can't get enveloppes to send invoices, there will be no money coming in...

The lady who handles supplies here is great.  Before sending out an order, she asks what we need, orders it, calls us when it's in.  Need photocopier paper?  Paperclips?  Pens or highlighters?  Right there honey, help yourself.   

[/right

greencat

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Re: How to get Human Resources to provide supplies? tiny UPDATE #23
« Reply #52 on: July 17, 2014, 11:21:16 AM »
In the other office location of the department I work for, the only supply that the office manager kept locked up was the batteries - mostly because good batteries are kind of expensive and too many people were taking them to use in their personal devices so when the few battery-powered things around the office needed new ones, there were none.

Here in this location I don't know if the rest of the staff have access to batteries, but my office has some in our supply cabinet because we have to be able to replace the batteries of a few random things on short notice.

miranova

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Re: How to get Human Resources to provide supplies? tiny UPDATE #23
« Reply #53 on: July 17, 2014, 12:09:42 PM »
You know, in reading this topic and an article on CNN about a company that restricts its employees off-break restroom stops to six minutes a day, I got to thinking: if you don't trust your employees, why did you hire them???

I always wonder this very same thing.  If you get to a point where you have to treat your employees like children, then maybe the better solution is to fire people who can't be trusted,not punish the entire office.  I am not a fan of the type of management that basically says "well we had this one problem with 2 or 3 employees out of 200 doing X, so now we will shut down your access to very reasonable thing and now you will have to ask and beg and grovel for it so we can prevent 200 people from doing X even though 198 of you were never doing X to begin with".  This accomplishes nothing.  The 2 people doing X don't even get it, and just find another way to rip off the company or be lazy or whatever it was they were doing, and the good employees get punished.

I especially like the emails from my bosses where they complain that people aren't reading their emails. 

LeveeWoman

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Re: How to get Human Resources to provide supplies? tiny UPDATE #23
« Reply #54 on: July 17, 2014, 12:27:27 PM »
I once worked for a newspaper where we were told to clock out before we went to the bathroom, and to clock back in when we were done because the paper was in the red. I refused.

Not long after I quit, the bookkeeper and publisher were both arrested for embezlement.

MommyPenguin

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Re: How to get Human Resources to provide supplies? tiny UPDATE #23
« Reply #55 on: July 17, 2014, 01:07:05 PM »
You know, in reading this topic and an article on CNN about a company that restricts its employees off-break restroom stops to six minutes a day, I got to thinking: if you don't trust your employees, why did you hire them???

I always wonder this very same thing.  If you get to a point where you have to treat your employees like children, then maybe the better solution is to fire people who can't be trusted,not punish the entire office.  I am not a fan of the type of management that basically says "well we had this one problem with 2 or 3 employees out of 200 doing X, so now we will shut down your access to very reasonable thing and now you will have to ask and beg and grovel for it so we can prevent 200 people from doing X even though 198 of you were never doing X to begin with".  This accomplishes nothing.  The 2 people doing X don't even get it, and just find another way to rip off the company or be lazy or whatever it was they were doing, and the good employees get punished.

I especially like the emails from my bosses where they complain that people aren't reading their emails.

I saw this article, and from the headline it looked outrageous, but it pointed out that employees get a lunch break and two 15-minute breaks per day, so they're basically trying to cut down on bathroom visits aside from that.  If you work an 8-hour day, that means maybe 4 hours before lunch and 4 hours after lunch (unless lunch counts towards your 8, in which case let's say 3.5 hours after lunch).  If you get a 15 minute break in there, that means you're never going more than 2 hours without a bathroom break, and in a pinch, you have an extra 6 minute break.  That doesn't sound *too* outrageous to me.  And given that there was a discussion on this board of people taking frequent long smoking breaks to get out of work, maybe the company is having a major issue with people taking frequent bathroom breaks and chatting/hanging out, stopping in to visit people along the way, whatever.  I guess I don't think that limiting it to a reasonable degree is outrageous, although I do think there should be allowance for unusual circumstances (pregnancy, gastointestinal distress, IBS, etc--but not all situations would be long-term medical where you'd have some sort of doctor's note the way IBS would, and I think they need to account for that).

I like the idea of rewards for limiting breaks, though, if it's actually necessary.

I did read an article recently about Finnish schools, and how they (not sure if all or some) schedule a 15-minute break after every 45 minutes of work.  One teacher, from America, thought this seemed excessive, so she switched her class up to doing 1 hour 30 minutes (twice the 45) and then getting a half hour break.  She found productivity and attention to go way down.  So maybe the company should instead work on a way to make the breaks more effective and get people working more efficiency.  :)

Seraphia

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Re: How to get Human Resources to provide supplies? tiny UPDATE #23
« Reply #56 on: July 17, 2014, 01:14:10 PM »
I once worked for a newspaper where we were told to clock out before we went to the bathroom, and to clock back in when we were done because the paper was in the red. I refused.

Not long after I quit, the bookkeeper and publisher were both arrested for embezlement.

I think it was a business book by Scott Adams (the Dilbert guy) that I read that talked about how draconian supply management can sometimes be a bellwether for larger problems in a company. The chain was Expensive Problem We Aren't Dealing With (i.e. overpaid management/bad purchasing/criminal activity) --> Look the Other Way, But We Have to Do Something (scapegoating people and the illusion of repair) --> Ridiculous Policy (you people are highlighting too much and wasting staples, so we're locking them up!)

He had some absurd examples.
Ancora Imparo - I am still learning

lilfox

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Re: How to get Human Resources to provide supplies? tiny UPDATE #23
« Reply #57 on: July 17, 2014, 03:14:45 PM »
I once worked for a newspaper where we were told to clock out before we went to the bathroom, and to clock back in when we were done because the paper was in the red. I refused.

Not long after I quit, the bookkeeper and publisher were both arrested for embezlement.

I think it was a business book by Scott Adams (the Dilbert guy) that I read that talked about how draconian supply management can sometimes be a bellwether for larger problems in a company. The chain was Expensive Problem We Aren't Dealing With (i.e. overpaid management/bad purchasing/criminal activity) --> Look the Other Way, But We Have to Do Something (scapegoating people and the illusion of repair) --> Ridiculous Policy (you people are highlighting too much and wasting staples, so we're locking them up!)

He had some absurd examples.

This happens in my company (and probably most others): 
Month 1 = We had record-breaking sales last year!  Profits galore!  Company is doing great!
Month 2 = We'll have to pinch pennies, budgets are being hit hard, projects are being cancelled and layoffs are looming.
Month 3 = Hey, lowest rung employees, do you really need your company cell phone?  Company could save literally tens of dollars per year if you return your phone.  Hey, lowest rung employees, on the laughably tiny chance you are approved for international travel, you are expected to fly coach*.
Month 4 = It's another record-breaking sales quarter!  Company is so awesome!  Stock prices are soaring!

* Flying biz class overseas is about the one exec-level perk we ever come close to seeing and it used to be a guaranteed part of international trips.  Approval for said overseas travel now requires signatures from 4 levels of managers, some of whom would never be expected to fly coach domestically, much less internationally.


I am very grateful to at least have an office manager who is fabulous at her job and the nicest person ever.  I think in OP's case and others, when it's possible, escalating up the chain is the only thing to do.   In the case of the toilet paper shortage - that would have made a great local news story.  There might be acceptance that school supplies are donated by students' families, but to be out of TP for an entire building because some guy didn't want to do his job?  That is great fodder for the local "problem-solver" shows.

amandaelizabeth

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Re: How to get Human Resources to provide supplies? tiny UPDATE #23
« Reply #58 on: July 17, 2014, 07:48:11 PM »
I once worked for small charity.  Obviously the Manager tried to keep overheads to a minimum, but in our view her control over the office supplies was too strict.  One of my co-workers children had to do a paper on small office systems for her degree, and the board agreed that she could use our organisation as a practicum study.

I think her mum may have mentioned the office supplies contretemps because she did an in depth study of this.  To everybody's amazement (sarcastic tone here) the study showed that the amount of time spent go the Manager to get the items needed thereby not spent working on tasks, and  the often time taken to get the paperclips from a supplier,  expressed at the average hourly rate of both the worker and the manager greatly exceed the cost of the stationary needed.  If it was not available from the Manager and the worker had to complete the task without the necessary tools, then it  just added to cost.  Speaking of paperclips the researcher timed a worker without adequate paperclips, search though unattached papers trying to link one piece of paper with another.  It was an eye opener.  The board swiftly set up a stationary cupboard with 3 months worth of supplies and put a co-worker in charge with a monthly order to be placed to top it up to the 3 month level.  The productivity went up, not just because we did not engage in the pleading  for supplies, but because we all felt good about the new practice.  The board could show they were still being frugal with donors money, the daughter got a great mark for her paper and the only one who wasn't  happy was the manager.

TootsNYC

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Re: How to get Human Resources to provide supplies? tiny UPDATE #23
« Reply #59 on: July 17, 2014, 09:21:22 PM »
You know, in reading this topic and an article on CNN about a company that restricts its employees off-break restroom stops to six minutes a day, I got to thinking: if you don't trust your employees, why did you hire them???

I always wonder this very same thing.  If you get to a point where you have to treat your employees like children, then maybe the better solution is to fire people who can't be trusted,not punish the entire office.  I am not a fan of the type of management that basically says "well we had this one problem with 2 or 3 employees out of 200 doing X, so now we will shut down your access to very reasonable thing and now you will have to ask and beg and grovel for it so we can prevent 200 people from doing X even though 198 of you were never doing X to begin with".  This accomplishes nothing.  The 2 people doing X don't even get it, and just find another way to rip off the company or be lazy or whatever it was they were doing, and the good employees get punished.

I especially like the emails from my bosses where they complain that people aren't reading their emails.


Well, often the people who really need to be fired are the managers, because they're creating an atmosphere in which people have a motive to take from the company. Either they're being treated badly, so they end up acting like the sneaky teenagers that their managers apparently believe they are, or they're being paid so little that you're hiring both a certain class (though petty theft is often more rampant at higher levels, actually) or they resent how little they make, and stealing stuff (or time) is a way to get their own back.