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Some Features of the System

  • • On line, to make every detail of each callout or overtime activity highly visible to any interested parties
  • • Formalized request, authorization, and vetting procedures to ensure a clear structure
  • • Provide audit trails
  • • Direct payroll feed via flexible payment algorithms
  • • System-generated weekly, monthly and year-to-date statistics for comparison with annual targets

Versions were eventually made available for shift workers as well as day workers. We built the system using the prototyping approach and a fourth generation language; this required about 480 man-days of IT effort.

Overtime Control 243

Some Subtle Features of the Design

  • • Technicians only got paid if they put the job into the system. It was a case of no job details, no pay.
  • • Each month we created a "Top Ten Job Requesters of the Month" list. In line with our approach of embarrassing people into submission, this was given a huge amount of publicity. People on this list were not amused; they moved heaven and earth to avoid being on the list

I can't stop here without a little story. One night the Plant Manager's electric shower wouldn't work. His wife then complained to the effect that he was the manager, she needed a shower, and he should do something about it. Suitably chastened, he rang the duty electrical technician and asked if he could come out and fix the problem; only one condition he wasn't to put the call-out in the system. The technician explained that meant he wouldn't get paid.

She didn't get her shower, not a hot one anyway, and certainly not that night.

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