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Old 02-08-2019, 07:02 PM   #1
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Temp - Give Em a Chance? Let Em Go?

Manager hired a temp to do entry level accounting work to fill in a entry level position void. I'm supervising and training. Manager may extend on a contractual basis or hire perm depending on performance, pretty much my performance evaluation of this temp.

Individual has very good grades, honour roll etc, simply put it, top student caliber. Good grade doesn't always translate to being able to do the job in a working environment.

Long story short, individual tends to slack off a little bit (does some quick texting at his desk and taking "many" short mini washroom breaks apart from the regular 1 hour lunch break). I know what he does during those mini breaks AKA "phone break". Being someone completely fresh out of school with zero to none work experience, you would think they would try to be professional and set a really good impression, so that the employer would either extend the contract long term or potentially hire perm.

There are many times would sit there confused at the work until I ask if there are any questions or need help with anything. No question = assumption you understand, but doesn't seem to really know what he's doing. I have trained and supervised many temps and current staff, all of them set a good initial impression with a good ethic, but this individual quite the opposite.

Individual only has couple months of work experience ever in his life. Do I give the benefit of the doubt this person is a noob and doesn't know how to properly behave/work in a work environment at work or just let this person go and start all over again with hiring/training someone else.

End of the day the question comes down to, do I want to work with this person in the long run. Any of you guys have any feedback or suggestions on how to approach this? I don't think I'm being hard on the temp, the work is easy, just has to get it done and ask when in doubt and show you are hard working.
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Old 02-08-2019, 07:11 PM   #2
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Have you told the temp the things you wrote here?
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Old 02-08-2019, 08:06 PM   #3
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I would've expected that as a temp who wants to remain in the company after the contract expires, they would at least try their best to represent themselves as a top tier employee for the 3 months or whatever in hopes of remaining with the company. They could've misinterpreted your corporate atmosphere if it's relaxed as many places are especially with cell phones nowadays. I'd let them know what you want fixed and see if they persist on doing what they're currently doing
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Old 02-09-2019, 08:41 AM   #4
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Old 02-09-2019, 10:07 AM   #5
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Have you told the temp the things you wrote here?
Yes. Temp asked if there are other breaks aside from lunch. Said of course, can go washroom or take a coffee break. Although that shouldn't mean one should go take 10 of them in a day @ 10-15 min intervals. Use common sense and judgement? I mean I don't think one should be that clear cut with having to indicate the length and what one should and shouldn't do. Unless you guys feel I should be "even more clearer"?
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Old 02-09-2019, 10:11 AM   #6
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I would've expected that as a temp who wants to remain in the company after the contract expires, they would at least try their best to represent themselves as a top tier employee for the 3 months or whatever in hopes of remaining with the company. They could've misinterpreted your corporate atmosphere if it's relaxed as many places are especially with cell phones nowadays. I'd let them know what you want fixed and see if they persist on doing what they're currently doing
E.g. If the manager comes to work in jeans and uses cell phone during work, that doesn't mean it equates the same applies for regular staff members. One should know their "role" and how to behave. I don't think it needs to be written and verbally communicated about these kinds of things. Especially one that is a temp and should aim to set a good impression. End of the day, the temp can walk away with nothing these next little while (no job offered and no good reference based on the current attitude).
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Old 02-09-2019, 11:13 AM   #7
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I do this all the time. My approach at this stage.

Talk to the temp, say you are interested in taking them on perm basis with probation period. Point out all areas of improvement. Take on. Strict Evaluation and zero tolerance on stupidity. As long as your agency allows you to use the fee towards another candidate, you don't have any risk.
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Old 02-09-2019, 01:52 PM   #8
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Yes. Temp asked if there are other breaks aside from lunch. Said of course, can go washroom or take a coffee break. Although that shouldn't mean one should go take 10 of them in a day @ 10-15 min intervals. Use common sense and judgement? I mean I don't think one should be that clear cut with having to indicate the length and what one should and shouldn't do. Unless you guys feel I should be "even more clearer"?
I do accounting at a tech/marketing company. The norm is that we can do whatever we want as long as we get our work done in a timely matter. Obviously we'd prioritize financial reporting during month ends vs doing dumb stuff. But this also means that for 3/4 weeks, 70+ of us will take 5 - 6 breaks at 15 min intervals to play ping pong, Foosball, grab coffee, play with dogs and nobody would bat an eye. Maybe the company norm makes it seem like its okay to do so? If not I'd probably talk to him rather than assuming he should know better.
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Old 02-09-2019, 04:02 PM   #9
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id say either contiune on probation, or let him go and outline his shortcomings so he knows what should and shouldn't be tolerated in future employment.

This type of shit is only gonna get worse and worse with people so addicted to their phones, productivity falls off a cliff if people cant set their own boundaries for stuff like this
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Old 02-09-2019, 10:08 PM   #10
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Roughly how old are you, Euro7r? It sounds like the kid is totally fresh out of hs / college / ugrad, and what I am seeing here is a very typical generational difference at the work place.

You (and everyone else) are certainly free to continue expecting good work ethics out of a worker, and you cannot be faulted for expecting that. However, you want to bear in mind that roughly speaking, every generation has a different set of behaviour, expectations, and priorities. In a broad stroke, traditionalists, boomers, Gen X, Millennials, Gen Z, etc. they all behave differently. So while I agree that in Euro7r's case, the guy is probably as green as it gets, and has little idea of what is expected, certain traits seems to be coming out of him as a typical Gen Z. In particular, these kids really consider their smart phone as an extension of themselves. It may sound weird to you, but they literally grew up with these, so being "connected" is really rather normal to them. Case in point, if they need to understand something new that they don't know about, they'll probably google / YouTube it and see. Some of us may think that way, but some of us don't. In his case, being connected to his social circle is important.

As you deal with more of these kids, or even just workers from different age groups and generations, you'll see how they behave differently. Unless you plan on only hiring Gen X-ers or older, I'd say you might as well get used to these new behaviour from the new generation. As long as he is getting the work done, I'd say leave his phone habits alone. You might even want to encourage him to just use his phone without going on "breaks" if it doesn't interfere with the optics / visual professionalism.

The confused bit / not knowing what to do or ask thing seems more like the result of him being green. For this one, it depends on whether you want to / care to spend time training him up. If you think it is worthwhile for your company to keep him around later, show him and train him. If you don't think he is worth the trouble, set him free.
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Old 02-09-2019, 10:42 PM   #11
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In an ideal world, you shouldn't have to babysit the kid, but that's not always the case.

Give him some guidance, set clear and realistic expectations, offer assistance when expectations aren't being met, and if he continues to not meet expectations, well, then it's on him.

We take students at work twice a year in the boiler room (usually 3-4 at a time) and half of them are usually self-motivated and eager. The other half, not so much. Sometimes it's just that they've never worked before, sometimes it's that they have the knowledge but lack real-world skills and therefore lack confidence, and sometimes it's just that they're lazy as fuck or they're only there because their parents are "forcing them" to be there (in which case, why the fuck are you even in school wasting presumably their money?).

Obviously, the latter is a lost cause, but the ones who lack experience/skills/confidence usually just need someone to take them under their wing.
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Old 02-10-2019, 05:23 PM   #12
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Roughly how old are you, Euro7r? It sounds like the kid is totally fresh out of hs / college / ugrad, and what I am seeing here is a very typical generational difference at the work place.
I've noticed that everyone in current and past company check their phones pretty often. I think in this day and age that will be the norm. Even when I worked at a retail bank, the managers who were in their 50's would play on their phones every 15 minutes or so, especially if it's an office job that's non client facing. That doesn't mean they don't get their stuff done though.

Might sound spoiled but in this day and age, I think if a tech company banned cell phone usage in the office. It would have a hard time hiring staff / retaining talent. Sounds like OP just thinks the staff isn't talented. The phone usage seems to not be the issue though.
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Old 02-10-2019, 07:16 PM   #13
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I agree with the points you guys have mentioned above. Different companies yield different working environments. I'm only a few years older than this fresh grad temp.

The temp has yet to even learn his job duties thoroughly where he is able to do it by himself. By playing with the phone, taking more breaks than one really should be really reflects the person' attitude towards commitment. If they just want to play with their phones, just stay home and play with your phone all you want, don't waste others time trying to train you, where your mind is elsewhere thinking about something else. It was easy for me to verify this point by asking some very basic questions about the work to see if temp listens, did not know the answer. Didn't even bother writing it down for notes for reference when I trained him and told him about it.

This next new generation of kids that easily get distracted, good luck with finding jobs. Honestly I feel they think they can graduate with a degree and just magically will land a good paying job without doing much work to get there. Shit ain't gonna get handed to you like that, gotta work hard considering the competitiveness in lower mainland.
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Old 02-10-2019, 07:26 PM   #14
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i would have ONE talk with him/her to let them have a chance.

then next time.. fire.

my golden rule for friends. If you're dumb in your 20s, lack of manners, respect, common sense, lack of knowledge etc, I can give you benefit of the doubt it's your upbringing etc.

If you're not smart in your 30s.. you're just a dumb ass and stupid.

For work... for junior roles, I'll give you 2 updates / warnings / reviews... and you're done.
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Old 02-11-2019, 02:18 PM   #15
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Just let him go, and explain to him exactly why so that hopefully he can improve. There are plenty of fresh grads out there with a great work ethic.
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Old 02-12-2019, 11:56 AM   #16
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Generally speaking the work ethic is the best it's ever going to be when someone first starts, if it's already bad they are just going to get worse. I agree 100% with what was said above, work ethic is so much more important than skill. I'd rather train someone who maybe doesn't know as much but is keen to learn and willing to work hard than hire some prick who knows his job but is a slacker.

The problem with slackers is slacking tends to breed slacking. You hire one, someone else already there or just starts with the company sees the bar down there and that's all they think they need to achieve to maintain status quo.

It sounds to me like you have a slacker with no proven track record who doesn't know their job, best of all worlds and by best I mean worst.
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Old 02-12-2019, 12:20 PM   #17
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Quote:
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This next new generation of kids that easily get distracted, good luck with finding jobs. Honestly I feel they think they can graduate with a degree and just magically will land a good paying job without doing much work to get there. Shit ain't gonna get handed to you like that, gotta work hard considering the competitiveness in lower mainland.
I feel like without CPA/CFA you'll be heavily disadvantaged thinking a business degree will land you a good paying job. Unless your degree is from like an ivey league school you'll likely struggle in Vancouver lol. I've had classmates at school thinking they can get a MBA right outta undergrad without work experience. Do they not know that an MBA costs $70k and you need work experience.

Just curious, would you care if he played on his phone / didn't take notes if he did he job and knew exactly what he had to get done.
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Old 02-12-2019, 02:01 PM   #18
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This next new generation of kids that easily get distracted, good luck with finding jobs.
It's not a generational thing. Anyone regardless of generation is distracted by their phone.

However, if it's severe enough to warrant attention I don't think it's as you describe, "quick texting" here and there. Everyone does that in every job.

I know people that do this and they work in law, or at big 4, or are even dentists. Everyone takes a quick text break, checks their IG, uses whatsapp web or Gchat during work time.

The difference is they still get their stuff done and never seem like they're slacking.

Gone are the days where people work 9-5 with 3 breaks. It's all about productivity now and not just "looking" like you're productive. You will find many studies that conclude that work in bursts and more breaks = more productive.

But I'm not defending this kid. He sounds more like a slacker than the person I described above.
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Old 02-17-2019, 08:07 PM   #19
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fire him, but let him know why

if he's smart and motivated, he'll get it soon...if he isn't...well, dodged that bullet.
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Old 02-18-2019, 09:27 AM   #20
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Let him go. You don't owe anything to him. No such thing as a free lunch. Your ROI with this temp is negative. Thank you. Next.
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Old 02-18-2019, 03:00 PM   #21
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Why bother creating this thread if he's so disposable and can be replaced in no time? What's so special about him that you put aside your professional judgement and ask advise on auto forum? You don't owe him a thing, no?
Talk to him. You might learn something new yourself. You might not be as good of a teacher as you think you are. Number of people you've mentored is almost as irrelevant as his grades. Then, if he doesn't change within a week, let him go.
Do you give him enough work or is he playing the phone because there is nothing to do? As been asked before, is he getting things done at all?
Are you always available for help? I've been there, and having to wait for someone to answer my questions for two hours isn't helping. You ask and wait once, twice, ten times and then you're like "why do I even bother?".
How much are you paying? You get what you pay for. Are you sure he's even interested in long term? If he's using you as 3 month plug, then what do you expect?
And assuming that his silence= understanding is insane. Have you not read his resume? Did you not see who you/management hired? He knows nothing and he's not going to learn it himself, google will only get him so far.
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