not really, but they did piss me off yesterday. Effective today, I am no longer an exempt, or salaried, employee. After three years with this company and three years of not being a slave to a time card, I am once again non-exempt, or hourly. My actual pay doesn’t change, but instead of a convenient consistency in my paychecks, they will now fluctuate every pay period. Mostly because there are inconsistent numbers of hours in the pay period. Also because overtime pay now becomes a factor.
There was one time at my old job where overtime hurt me. I’m not really clear how it happened, but my paycheck was less than what it would have been had I not worked overtime. At that job I was paid bi-weekly, so each pay period had the exact same number of hours in it. I don’t get how making more money would result in a smaller check, but I never worked overtime for them again just to avoid that issue.
It sucks because I’m back into a situation I thought I had gotten out of when I accepted employment at Microsoft. I now have to worry about how many hours I worked, and how many hours are going to be on this paycheck. Will it be enough to cover my rent. Etc. etc. etc.
I so feel like a second-class employee now. Maybe I’m a little off in my thinking, but a salaried position, in my mind, meant that I had a job with real responsibility. That I wasn’t just coming in to process a bunch of transactions. That I was given a salary because so much was expected of me.
They say that they are making this change to benefit the employees. I fail to see how this benefits me. Surely there are some employees out there, who have been working 10-12 hour days on a regular basis, that this change will be a positive impact on. Sadly, I am not one of those employees. I have spent time and energy streamlining my processes and tasks so that I could complete my day-to-day work in a 40-hour work week. Why? I don’t want to spend any more time than is necessary working. I will work what I have to to get the job done, but I don’t want a job that requires a regular 45-50 hour week. I think that when you have employees that have to work those kinds of hours on a regular basis that your problem is not with how you compensate them, but that you have more workload than you have people.
Considering Microsoft is sitting on billions of dollars and trying to figure out how best to spend it, I think they could afford to not be so stingy with the headcount (or the systems budget for that matter…. Xbox is dying here because we can’t pay for development work and yet Microsoft has billions of dollars that are sitting in a bank account waiting for something to be spent on.)
So, while I still love the actual work that I do, my job satisfaction has dropped to about nil because of this change in how I am paid.
I doubt I will let it rest until I am restored to a salaried status, either through promotion or because they’re tired of me complaining.