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By E on Close-Reading Your Boss' Brief Emails: A Guide for the Anxious

@E Oh, so, here's why this is pretty fair. I heard for a round of hires where we had 2 slots open, we had something like 1,000 applicants, of which some 650 made it to the test. From there, something like 150 passed. Then they interviewed EVERYONE who passed. Once they hired their two, if either one had failed probation, they'd have to call up everyone in the second interview batch to get another chance at it.

Comparatively, at a private firm, they'd probably just pick the first 10 they liked for interviews, and throw away all the other resumes. If they then fired both those employees, you'd have to see the job listing, know it was the same job and try again.

Posted on October 3, 2012 at 4:25 pm 1

By E on Close-Reading Your Boss' Brief Emails: A Guide for the Anxious

@bibliostitute Well basically most government jobs, and this includes local gov. in bigger cities have a hiring hoop to jump through. You need to figure out where to apply (usually each entity- city/county/federal) etc, has a website where you fill out an annoyingly long form (where you attach a resume and cover letter, but also all kinds of info). Then civil service rules says everyone who fills that form out correctly gets to take a test for the job. So then you go take a test. Everyone who gets above a passing grade then gets an interview. Then it varies, but at my job it was 1st interview with a 3 person peer panel with set questions who scored you and passed you up the chain. Only when you get to your second interview do you talk to a person who has the ability to hire you, and thats when they decide. After that I was on probation for 6 months with a performance review every 2 months until they hired me.

It can take a long time. My coworker got called about 10 months or so after her first interview for her second interview. The good thing is once your form is in, you usually stay on the list for a while so if any openings come up, you can apply. Also the good thing is that if you do the online form, you can use that to apply to a wide variety of jobs inside that system and if you meet the passing grade for any, you will get to take the test and that gives you a shot. For instance my job now is on the opposite coast from where I went to school so I studied a lot of the state regulations I never learned before my test and interviews.

So now that I'm in, its hard to get me back out. But since I think I'm overall a good employee, and I think that I work with about the same or less number of jerks that I've met at private firms, I think it's fair enough. Also a lot of times it's hard to fire people simply because to fire someone you need to document why before you can, and it's management being passive about documenting that keeps people in their seats. When you see aggregious examples of bad employees not being fired, it's often because someone at the top decided to not deal with it.

Posted on October 3, 2012 at 4:22 pm 2

By E on Close-Reading Your Boss' Brief Emails: A Guide for the Anxious

@mousie housie as an employee in local government, I think the benefits we have, such as a due process that gives benefit of the doubt to an employee prior to firing them are good things. I think it should be hard for most employers to fire people! Most civil servants had to pass a test, get interviewed, and be on a probation period before being hired. Thats a much more fair system to find meritous employees than "we hired this guy because he knew someone" and for every horrible person that the strict rules about firing someone protect, there's probably at least two other people who got to keep their job even though they have cancer or a baby or took the blame for a mistake made by their boss.

People sure as heck love to think government workers are entitled. But we're actually American workers just like you, and when we say we're thankful to have protections at our job that give us a safety net to do our work in, we aren't mocking people who don't or being entitled. And we're not a monolith of smugness.

A lot of us lost our jobs in this recession, or took pay cuts voluntarily, went on furlough, or because we had hiring freezes did the work of 3 people, and did our work while people continued to call us a bunch of socialist facists pushing the UN's agenda on climate change(actual letters I have recieved).

We government employees are 10% of the American workforce. We're not the people on Wall Street who made money betting on people losing their homes. We're mostly not the people in Congress who turn a blind eye to deregulations that make our food products less safe, our financial markets less secure. Most of us are trying to help other Americans drive on safe roads, have books and internet, be able to get to a hospital in an emergency, keep our forests green.

There is so much about the US government that needs fixing. There are systematic issues all over. But this is a straw man- blaming the many dedicated people who want to help and want good secure jobs for appreciating that as entitled, is absurd.

Posted on October 3, 2012 at 2:20 pm 16

By Nicole Cliffe on The Void Is Staring Across You

Perhaps you would like to expand on those thoughts and then email them to us because INTERESTING.

Posted on October 3, 2012 at 2:03 pm 1

By ThatWench on The Void Is Staring Across You

@Alli525 I've mentioned before, but her kink-and-general-sex-negativity means I just can't deal with her anymore. (I suppose it makes the name more appropriate.) I just want to sit her down and say, "kinky sex is just more complicated sex. Some people like complicated things in their lives, some people don't. But it's really no different from one person preferring Twilight Imperium III on board game night, while the other prefers Hungry Hungry Hippos. Mismatched couples can learn to compromise, or they can find other partners who prefer d20s/yelling "uno", but neither one of them is a gross weirdo who deserves to be shunned. And acting like it just makes you look like the only kid in class yelling "nerd!" at the kid who likes doing her math homework."

Posted on October 3, 2012 at 1:56 pm 4

By isitisabel on Friday Open Thread

I'm having my 21st birthday party tonight (my actual birthday was on Wednesday) and it's going to be so much fun! I have about an hour to finish sewing tiger stripes on an orange sweatshirt--the party's Calvin and Hobbes themed, isn't that the greatest?--and I hope I can make it in time. I always forget how long sewing projects take when one doesn't have a sewing machine...

Posted on September 21, 2012 at 6:28 pm 3

By Hot Doom on Friday Open Thread

I just turned in my MA dissertation! I turned it in two weeks late and had to submit mitigating evidence to show that I was too depressed to write it all summer, so I technically don't know if the late penalty will be removed, but now it's finallllyyyy innnnn! Agh, 15,470 words is no longer a monkey on my back and it feels so good :)

Posted on September 21, 2012 at 5:37 pm 10

By miss buenos aires on Friday Open Thread

Am I pregnant? Let's take a vote!

(Please vote yes, in case you are wondering.)

Posted on September 21, 2012 at 5:31 pm 3

By sceps yarx on Friday Open Thread

MY SIX YEAR OLD IS DONE WITH HIS THREE AND A HALF YEARS OF CHEMO TOMORROW! I have so many feelings. I'm dealing with them by obsessively reading the Hairpin. Thanks for being here for me you guys!

Posted on September 21, 2012 at 4:33 pm 64

By ayo nicole on Friday Open Thread

@Dancercise Ask him!

Posted on September 21, 2012 at 4:28 pm 1