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Are cell phones taking bite out of YOUR bottom line

Speedie

Stainless
Joined
Feb 24, 2009
Location
Midwestern MN/Wi USA
Looking around at work I see 99% of fellow employees on cell phones. One is a big proponent of marijuana and side hustles CBD, one loves hating on politics, one is obsessed with missing kids and dogs, one always checking hunting gear...and on and on. What creative methods do you use to keep off your phone. I start work in 10mns and keep my phone in my locker. Check it on brake and I am super rare. Maybe ask for a raise
 

DDoug

Diamond
Joined
Oct 18, 2005
Location
NW Pa
Looking around at work I see 99% of fellow employees on cell phones. One is a big proponent of marijuana and side hustles CBD, one loves hating on politics, one is obsessed with missing kids and dogs, one always checking hunting gear...and on and on. What creative methods do you use to keep off your phone. I start work in 10mns and keep my phone in my locker. Check it on brake and I am super rare. Maybe ask for a raise

Implement Piecework, problem solved.
 

Lewie

Cast Iron
Joined
Jun 7, 2018
Location
Albuquerque NM
Make the bldg. a Faraday Cage. That will solve the "internet" problems but if the "people" are that sort, they will find other things to waste time on.
...lewie...
 

DDoug

Diamond
Joined
Oct 18, 2005
Location
NW Pa
Make the bldg. a Faraday Cage. That will solve the "internet" problems but if the "people" are that sort, they will find other things to waste time on.
...lewie...

Careful, this has been discussed before, including use of jamming devices.

Employees need to be able to call 911 etc.
 

Big B

Diamond
Joined
Jun 26, 2009
Location
Michigan, USA
Looking around at work I see 99% of fellow employees on cell phones. One is a big proponent of marijuana and side hustles CBD, one loves hating on politics, one is obsessed with missing kids and dogs, one always checking hunting gear...and on and on. What creative methods do you use to keep off your phone. I start work in 10mns and keep my phone in my locker. Check it on brake and I am super rare. Maybe ask for a raise

My advice is that if you aren't the owner or foreman you should MYOB. Not your problem.
 

boosted

Stainless
Joined
Jan 4, 2014
Location
Willsonville
I treat my employees like adults, and let them manage their own phone use. If they have everything dialed, and are making us money, I DNGAF if they want to sit next to the machine and watch Netflix. Of course, if they choose to push a broom or break down tools while things are cruising, it will certainly come into consideration at the next performance review.

If you want professional employees, they need to be treated like professionals. The good ones won't put up with a boss who wants to monitor their phone use, and they all seem to get plenty of cold calls from recruiters.
 

CITIZEN F16

Banned
Joined
May 2, 2021
Depends on the work. Only thing that will do is increase scrap rates in some shops. I have never seen piece-work succeed in a machine shop.
Low production rates are generally waaaay cheaper than high scrap rates.

I tried it on simple work with two young slackers for a while. I got the same amount of production, believe it or not. They just goofed off at different increments. Instead of working 1/2 the speed of a snail dragging a bag of cement for an hour, they would double their speed and disappear 1/2 the time. These were jobs that were close to idiot proof, sloppy work would just require do overs, not scrapping parts. There wasn't any motivating these guys, I don't think I could have got them to move fast if I set the building on fire.

I do agree, most of the time piece rate in a machine shop would lead to either high scrap rates or excessive tool consumption.
 

CITIZEN F16

Banned
Joined
May 2, 2021
Looking around at work I see 99% of fellow employees on cell phones. One is a big proponent of marijuana and side hustles CBD, one loves hating on politics, one is obsessed with missing kids and dogs, one always checking hunting gear...and on and on. What creative methods do you use to keep off your phone. I start work in 10mns and keep my phone in my locker. Check it on brake and I am super rare. Maybe ask for a raise

My opinion on what to do would depend on circumstance. Pre cell phones, we had newspapers, magazines, transistor, radios, and little TV sets. I had a guy who worked under me whose shop area was across an aisle that led to the cafeteria, he had his own little section of a large department. The guy was running six spindle Acme-Gridleys, running small short simple brass parts, the work orders were for millions of parts. We had the old break bell system, the only breaks that alternated was the 30 minute break. About the only thing he did pretty much day in and out was load the machines, rough count his parts on an old school counting scale and stack them on a table in huge bins. I told him I did not care what he did to pass the time, I told him he could stand on his head all night
as long as his numbers were acceptable. I did tell him to stay out of sight of that aisle as the plant manager would walk by from time to time. I did not want to have to explain that I told a guy he could stand on his head in the corner.

So fast forward, if the guy running a couple auto loaders has great efficiency numbers and never makes scrap I am going to let him be, if he uses his phone excessively. If a guy with excessive phone use works in the deburr department and his main job is hand deburring parts we are going to have a problem.

It is all about how it effects the company bottom line. The problem is sometimes an owner won't even reward his best employees if slackers cause him to not be making an acceptable bottom line.
 

CITIZEN F16

Banned
Joined
May 2, 2021
My advice is that if you aren't the owner or foreman you should MYOB. Not your problem.

Awesome helpful response, NOT. That is rich coming from a manual machinist, you can't be making the company money while talking on a phone. I don't think anyone here works for a company that can get a taxpayer bailout to save it, if they help it go down the drain.
 

CITIZEN F16

Banned
Joined
May 2, 2021
Crazy thought - Make the work more interesting & engaging for employees...?

Somebody has to screw the caps on the toothpaste tubes, and clean the sumps. I am now just a one man band and no longer a spring chicken, I have actually busted out laughing when I am doing a crap job they would have assigned to a novice when I started in this field. At least I must have a good memory, even with a 35 year gap I remember all the important things you need to know when cleaning out sumps. I do have knee pads and a knee board that I didn't have 35 years ago, I now no longer dive on that cement like an NBA player after a loose ball.
 

john.k

Diamond
Joined
Dec 21, 2012
Location
Brisbane Qld Australia
"Instant dismissal for smoking or phone usage" ......wasnt enforced,.....UNTIL....someone needed to be fired on the spot......no comeback from the union or from wrongful dismissal laws,with pictures of the miscreant caught in the act.
 

jccaclimber

Hot Rolled
Joined
Nov 22, 2015
Location
San Francisco
"Instant dismissal for smoking or phone usage" ......wasnt enforced,.....UNTIL....someone needed to be fired on the spot......no comeback from the union or from wrongful dismissal laws,with pictures of the miscreant caught in the act.

Missed opportunity on the part of the fired individual. I worked at a place that had a no tobacco policy (inside). We hired a guy who chewed, which he did at his desk from day 1. Ultimately he was fired a year or two later for lying to his boss, but the official reason was tobacco use. Problem is that half the rest of his department also chewed tobacco at their desk, so clearly that wasn't the issue. All he needed at that point was to find something that was different about him (age, race, whatever) a decent lawyer, and to file a discrimination suit.

If you have some stated policy that phone use will be enforced if you aren't making numbers then you might (I'm not a lawyer) be ok, but highly selective enforcement invites trouble.
 

Hodge

Stainless
Joined
Jul 30, 2008
Location
spartanburg sc
Two signs posted in my shop years ago.
I think they speak to this and the frustration.

Maybe hire a better class of worker and those signs are no longer needed.

Ironically i have long grown tired answering calls and texts from a contractor i work for on occasion.
 

CITIZEN F16

Banned
Joined
May 2, 2021
Missed opportunity on the part of the fired individual. I worked at a place that had a no tobacco policy (inside). We hired a guy who chewed, which he did at his desk from day 1. Ultimately he was fired a year or two later for lying to his boss, but the official reason was tobacco use. Problem is that half the rest of his department also chewed tobacco at their desk, so clearly that wasn't the issue. All he needed at that point was to find something that was different about him (age, race, whatever) a decent lawyer, and to file a discrimination suit.

If you have some stated policy that phone use will be enforced if you aren't making numbers then you might (I'm not a lawyer) be ok, but highly selective enforcement invites trouble.

Pretty much every state is at will employment these days. Discrimination would have to be proven, and the burden would be on the person fired and his or her lawyer, fat chance of winning a discrimination lawsuit unless there is a history there. If the last 10 people fired had red hair and freckles you would have something, if just one of them did you have nothing.
 








 
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