April 2, 2011 (Saturday) - A Pay Freeze

For all that I whinge about my job (from time to time) it’s not a bad old life. It could be a lot worse. And I’m desperately hoping that government policy won’t make it worse.

My wages have been frozen for two years. I won’t get a pay rise in that time. And nor will my colleagues. Perhaps it’s rather self-seeking of me to worry about pounds and pence in what I originally intended to be a professional and reflective blog, but what will the effects of that pay freeze be? For myself it’s rather obvious. I shall have one pint of beer less every time I’m in the pub, and I might occasionally whinge about the rises in the cost of living outstripping my wages. But will everyone else have the same attitude?

I’ve been told by one of our support workers that he’s resigned and is soon to take up his new position. He’s found that bar work pays better than lab work, and is off to earn a crust by pulling pints. We will miss this chap when he goes. He’ll be replaced, and six months down the line he’ll be but a happy memory. Five years from now and no one will even remember his name. But what worries me is the (potential) legacy of this chap’s departure. What will be the reaction of all the other support staff?
After all, if you make a mistake at work, what happens? If there’s a mistake made in the hospital lab then there are potentially dire (and possibly fatal) consequences. If there’s a mistake made with a drinks order in the pub, then it can be put right in a matter of seconds. How long will it take people to realise that they could do a job with less responsibilities and earn more money?

Five years from now no one in the lab will remember the name of the bloke who resigned yesterday because in five years time we might all have got ourselves better paid jobs and there might be no one left in the lab.

One of the stated purposes of my doing C.P.D. (and this blog) is to improve the service I provide. It’s very difficult to do so when I’m being actively undermined by HM Government.

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