Saturday, 15 March 2008

LATA: Time Management (or, Regarding Rules#1 and 2)

Work in teh ACeS is largely operations and maintenance (mostly monitoring, ie. slacking, and hoping that nothing goes wrong) =P And like in most crucial facilities, manning the gateway is a 24/7 duty that falls upon the 9-member strong ACeS team.

Yep, there are only 9 members of the team at the moment, and it is our duty to make sure that the equipment in the facility, and the facility itself, are working at optimal levels. Of course, to be able to keep things running, we have to make sure that all available resources (ie., manpower) are utilized properly.

Actually, if there is one thing that is causing a bit of trouble among the team, it would have to be who would be on duty during holidays and at night. I had personally thought of this as a great problem that must be overcome, and as such I have been making the shifting schedules in such a way that everyone will be happy. Although I can't say that there are no problems arising out of the duty, there are at least significant reductions in qualms and bickerings. LOLz.

The problem is mostly about who would do the graveyard shift. Senior engineers no longer want to do the graveyard shift, as they say there are too old to cope with the stress of not sleeping at night. Well, although we Junior engineers are still able to stay up and running with very little sleep (or lack thereof), I fear our resistance will not stay as resilient unless some measures are put into place.

Actually, I was compelled to do some actions especially since the illness I fell victim to a few weeks ago may be due to the continuous graveyard shifts. Last year, I think I've done more night shifts than day and evening shifts; the stress manifested with a weaker immune system that paved the way for some respiratory infection. The point is, I would have recovered easily had my immune system been as strong as it was before.

The only solution I thought that would work for the time being would be to divide the whole week's duty and distribute the night shift. As of the moment, things are going smoothly, especially since I've also adjusted even the restdays and tweaked everything to keep everyone satisfied.

And there is also the matter of who would go on duty during the holidays. This really isn't much of a problem except during the Christmas and New Year holidays. Basically, those who would want to avail of the premium pay are the ones who stay behind. Let's just say this is Rule#1 as regards holiday duties.

Well, the problem with the incoming Holy Week is that only two persons are keen on staying; everyone else expressed desires to spend their time with their families (including myself). So, the matter had to be resolved using Rule#2: if the person had gone on vacation for the specific holiday the previous year, he should allow the others to have a break this time around.

And Rule#2 specifically obliges me to stay behind this week. As such, I've got no choice but to work out a schedule that gives me 9 straight days of work. Yeah, it's not exactly a good work week to look forward to, but since I've done longer duties before, I don't mind it much.

Hopefully nothing goes wrong during my duty (so I could spend my time updating my blog and stuff) =P

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