I guess it depends on what kind of work you do, but being expected to be on call all the time sounds like it would be pretty infuriating…unless you’re a brain surgeon or something.
But this tech support worker shared a story about how he dealt with a situation like this…let’s take a look.
Yes, I have a cell phone. No, you cannot reach me on it.
“I had a pretty good tech support job in the late 90s at a cool place to work.
Since we had an on-call rotation we had some nice perks. The company paid for a second phone line (yeah, dial-up modems were still the thing.) They also paid up to $X a month towards a cell phone or provided a company cell phone.
The only constant thing is change – the company was bought up by a large conglomerate. As the Borg assimilated us, they announced that they would no longer pay for personal cell phones and company ones would only be given to those at the manager level or above.
(As an aside, how stupid is that? Determine who gets a tool by status, rather than the usefulness of the tool to the job?) The rationale was that “everyone has a cell phone nowadays, and incidental use for company business should not be a burden”.
We grumbled, but it was still a cool place to work, so most people went along.
Most people, but not Bob.
At first, when they collected everyone’s contact number (meaning personal cell phone number), Bob gave them his desk phone number. Of course, emergency calls after hours went to voice mail. Typically, the Operations Center would call his home number next and usually get him.
It took them a couple of on-call rotations to figure out that they didn’t have his cell number. After a round of emails asking for it was ignored, he was summoned into the director’s office and asked for it. He explained why he felt it was unfair that the company used his asset without reimbursement.
He was told it would only be used for emergency, incidental use, and was a condition of employment. He reluctantly gave it up.
Then came the malicious part. Cell phones were pretty basic at that time – talk and text, really simple games. Most of the smarts were in the network. Bob found for an extra $2 per month, his phone line could block callers or send them directly to voicemail. Bob paid the $2 and set the company’s outbound caller id number to go directly to voicemail.
When Bob was not on call, he turned off the audio alert for voicemail, and the only indication was a little envelope icon on the phone’s 1 1/2″ screen. On-call, he got the alert, but only called back if he was away from home. Otherwise, he waited for the call on his landline.
He said it was the best $2 a month he had spent. I left a year later, and Bob was still enjoying his cell phone on his terms.”
Now check out what Reddit users had to say.
This reader shared their own story about how they eventually had to delete their personal number from the company directory.
Another person experienced the complete opposite situation with their job.
This individual said they got called on their vacation by their boss.
And this Reddit user shared a work story that really blew me away. Take a look.
What did you think about this story?
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