Monday, November 24, 2008

Wi Fi Monday blues

So it is a Monday, but not any old Monday; oh no, this is the Monday i have to go on a New Deal Jobseekers mandatory two week training course.

Now your average Joe Blogs who knows no better might think this leads to a decent two weeks in a warm office environment with desks and computer access and facilities to hunt out the job you can nail.

Well, I hate to disillusion you, but think again.  The reality (and this is just the highlights, I could rant for england on this!) includes:-

- A cold office with only chairs and no desks (When I say cold I mean around the 14oC mark, cold enough for it to be a health and safety matter).

- No access to any wi-fi whatsoever, use of laptop may be restricted and any networking is expressly forbidden (not sure how they would feel if I had a card or dongle, but I can't afford roaming broadband so the issue does not arise).

- A total of about twelve computers (two of which broken) between about sixty job seekers.

- Access to said computers severely restricted and I have yet to test it, but will not be surprised to find some job search sites and my email are barred.

- No policy on cookie and personal data clean up (inexpert users beware!  click remember me and have the rest of the job seekers reading your own emails!).

- They actually stated they "TRY to comply" with data protection regulations!  I think that tells you all you need to know.  I did not let my memory stick out of my site when they wanted to take my CV from it!

- access to any job searching facilities or computers barred during break and lunchtimes.

- the guy running the first group I was in started his address to the group (and I kid you not) with statements like "I hate this f***ing job, I ain't gonna be here long, it is so f***ing cold in this s***hold you should all walk out..... .... they promise me the young jobseekers and they gave me you lot..." It went on, but I walked out highly offended to report him to management at this point.  To my knowledge he has had no reprimand or sacking (which is what he deserves).  His group did indeed walk out that very afternoon.

Sooooo I survived,  but as expected it had demoralised me and put me right off searching for a job in the niow very limited time I have to do so during my evenings at home!  My days are busy doing a course the government insists upon which will demoralise me progressively and intensively, remove me from the facilities to search for a job, expose me to foul language and abuse, etc etc.  I spent my lunch break checking out the wi-fi possibilities in the area, which are basically limited to the library and that is a good tenminute walk away, so I'd only get ten minutes to eat and a half hour on the internet.

One positive, I was not sanctioned for using  my laptop to take notes.

I have told them the IT department are incompetent and it should be a management priority to allow laptop users to have wi-fi for job searching.  They are basically a bunch of incompetent idiots who are overpaid (the government funds them at a rate of some £379 per capita for the jobseekers).

Some enterprising documentary maker should expose this - it would make fun viewing for me!

Comments welcome.

And if my jobseeker gateway advisor reads this, then sorry david, it is nothing personal!

Net result