Friday, January 10, 2003

I work with computers every day, to the point that people will introduce me as a "computer guy." I hate that term, but it makes the point that I am no technophobe. In fact, I'm fascinated by new technologies.

But the rapid deployment of technology throughout every sector of our society has its downside. In particular, I think we're all aware of the potential dehumanizing effects of technology.

What makes a particular technology dehumanizing? Sometimes it's just the way that it is implemented. Whenever a new system is brought on-line in a "one size fits all" fashion, when everyone is forced to use it, regardless of how ridiculous or inappropriate it may be -- that is dehumanizing, because it reduces our autonomy. We become cogs in the machine, rather than masters of it.

I say put technology in its place. Kronos should serve us. We should not serve Kronos!

Thursday, January 09, 2003

On my very first day at this job, three and a half years ago, I asked my boss what time I should come in each morning.

His response was that the precise time didn't matter. "Just be responsible," he said.

I think that's an excellent approach.

But if my boss isn't counting the hours, why should Kronos?

Wednesday, January 08, 2003

I guess I've neglected to mention one important fact:
I am not an hourly employee!

I'm classified as "exempt." Exempt from what, you may ask?


That's right. Even if I work 80 hours a week, I still get paid the same amount.

And I wouldn't have it any other way.

But it's all the more crazy that I should be required to clock in and clock out. No matter how many hours I work, my paycheck is the same!

Tuesday, January 07, 2003

Oops. I forgot to "clock out" when I left my office yesterday evening. On honest mistake, but it puts me in a quandry.

Official policy dictates that I should report this oversight to our departmental "timekeeper" (my boss) who can make a correction to the record. But why should I bother him with this information? It's just more busywork for him. He's got more important things to do, and so do I. Frankly, he doesn't care what time I left my office, and I don't blame him.

Monday, January 06, 2003

I'm proud to work here. I believe in the mission of this university. I've been told that I could make more money at other universities or in the commercial sector. That may be true, but I don't think I'd have the same sense of pride that I have working here.

It's not just the mission of the university that inspires me. Ever since I started here, everyone -- all the faculty, the administration, my fellow staffers -- has treated me with respect. If I have worked hard, part of my motivation has been to earn that respect.

Being told to punch a timeclock runs counter to that sense of respect. My pride in working here is somewhat deflated.