Thursday, August 11, 2011

Illogical Logic Puzzle

This entry isn't about me or my work situation. It's about something a friend told me about.

Company R employs 4 transport workers. 2 of them have a special license which allows them to transport things that the other two cannot legally transport. ALL people with the special license, regardless of where they work in the nation have a cap on the number of hours per day that they may work. THIS IS FEDERALLY MANDATED.

Worker K is one of the special license people. K drove Route A and routinely finished within an 8 hour work day.

Worker C is the other special license person. He took over Route A and routinely finishes in 10 hours.

This job requires that each team member be on call for one week per month. The Route A driver used to be excluded from this requirement due to having a cap on the number of hours per day that special license people are allowed, by law, to work. This recently changed and now ALL workers are required to be on call for one week per month.

Worker K is the back-up for Worker C on on-call weeks (however, oddly, Worker C is not made to be Worker K's on-call backup). This means, the way the rotation is currently set up that Worker K is essentially on-call TWO weeks per month because Worker C regularly uses up all of his allotted work hours on "regular" calls, thereby forcing Worker K to cover his "on-call" calls.

Company R has decided that Worker C is "padding" his hours to get out of having to ever do "on-call" calls. This is likely true as it was established by Worker K that Route A could be completed in an 8 hour time frame and it takes Worker C 10 hours to complete that very same route... or, at least, it takes 10 hours on the weeks he is on-call.

Company R has decided that since it NEEDS to have 4 people in the on-call rotation and that Worker C is basically shirking his duty that both K and C need to be fired so they can hire people who will work on-call reliably.

But, the important thing to note here is that FEDERAL LAW mandates the cap on the hours special license people can work... so unless they hire people with the special license to work who are oblivious to the work hour cap, Company R will repeatedly be in violation of FEDERAL LAW by having their special license people work over the Federally Mandated hour cap.

It would SEEM that the LOGICAL answer is to hire someone whose sole duty is to take the "after hours" calls. Some weeks this would amount to a full-time position, other weeks it would not. Company R would likely not suffer a financial loss doing so, in fact, it would save them money by having to only pay REGULAR wages, not overtime wages.

Oh wait... THAT would MAKE SENSE and therefore, would NEVER happen. And I'm sure that the Men in Black would spirit away anyone crazy enough to propose it. Ahhh, bureaucracy!

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