Time and materials - A final rant



  • Yesterday I got a call from my handler at the company I subcontract to, to see if I was interested in 2 to 3 days work next week, on site, 2 states away from me (about a 4 1/2 hour drive). It is apparently a rush job during a maintenance shutdown at a plant, and I was told it would be billed as time and materials to the actual client. I thought "great .. no fixed budgets and being forced to underquote for the work". So I said yes and was given the details of the client, who would inform me on the actual job requirements. So I called the client, confirmed the work was within my comfort range (even though I would be coming cold) and discussed how long it would take. The client felt that it was 3-4 days work and that I should plan on being there for the 4 days. They also wanted to see if I could drop in this week to come up to speed on the job before work commenced, which would put me well over 2-3 days quoted to me (Unfortunately I just can't rush off to their plant to see the work this week, but I will be emailed a bunch of files to look over)

    So I emailed my handler back and said "Hey, the client says 3-4 days work, not 2-3 days, and they want me available for the full 4 days". This is the reply I got this morning:

    "Will you give me your estimated travel expenses for a 4 day trip?


    I think their is enough on his PO to support between 3 and 4 days. But I have to redo the math with travel from your location.

    I'll then let you know how many hours you can use."

    The only upside of this is that I am chucking in being an independent contractor and next year I am starting a full time job with a medium sized company that seems well respected, cares about their employees, wants to do the best for their customers and doesn't cheap out on quotes. So the job next week will be my last hurrah dealing with cluelessness incarnate



  • @OzPeter said:

     a medium sized company that seems well respected, cares about their employees, wants to do the best for their customers and doesn't cheap out on quotes.

    Such thing does not exist, if so let me know so I can start hunting unicorns



  • @OzPeter said:


    I think their is enough on his PO to support between 3 and 4 days. But I have to redo the math with travel from your location.

    Is that a direct quote? I can't believe they would mix up there/their. You obviously contract under retards, which of course is TRWTF.



  • @serguey123 said:

    @OzPeter said:

     a medium sized company that seems well respected, cares about their employees, wants to do the best for their customers and doesn't cheap out on quotes.

    Such thing does not exist, if so let me know so I can start hunting unicorns

    Well to save you the trouble with hunting licenses etc, I will be selling off all the unicorn pelts that I will be receiving as part of my compensation plan. But, yes such companies do exist (well at least this one) which is why I am jumping ship back to being an employee. This company has also been growing in the current economy and I even know people outside of it who have said that joining them is a smart move. I'm not sure if this is relevant, but it is not a US company, but a Canadian one. The downside is that I have to be near Toronto in January for induction. And that their recommended strategy for getting there is not to fly international to Toronto, but fly domestic to Buffalo, NY and drive across the border. They feel the US customs at the border crossing is less of a hassle than the extra time needed and US customs at the airport. I'm thinking - Buffalo - January - More snow than I may care to deal with.


  • @dubbreak said:

    Is that a direct quote? I can't believe they would mix up there/their. You obviously contract under retards, which of course is TRWTF.
    Yep that was cut and pasted from the email. I can forgive the mixup and blame it on bad typing - but yes the retards bit still stands. As added proof a couple of months ago I was bitching about a death march project that had a hard deadline. Since I finished coding, the production machine has sat in an office and not been delivered to the client. If I had had the extra time between that deadline and now I could have reduced my labor cost and delivered a better solution.



  • @dubbreak said:

    @OzPeter said:

    I think [b]their[/b] is enough on his PO to support between 3 and 4 days. But I have to redo the math with travel from your location.

    Is that a direct quote? I can't believe they would mix up [b]there/their[/b]. You obviously contract under retards, which of course is TRWTF.

    @OzPeter said:
    And that their recommended strategy for getting [b]their[/b] is not to fly international to Toronto, but fly domestic to Buffalo, NY and drive across the border.
    I don't think it's his handler that mixes up there/their :-)



  • @bjolling said:

    I don't think it's his handler that mixes up there/their :-)
    No idea what you are talking about :P



  • @OzPeter said:

    I'm not sure if this is relevant, but it is not a US company, but a Canadian one. .

    It is relevant in more than one way 

    @OzPeter said:

     

    The downside is that I have to be near Toronto in January for induction. And that their recommended strategy for getting there is not to fly international to Toronto, but fly domestic to Buffalo, NY and drive across the border. They feel the US customs at the border crossing is less of a hassle than the extra time needed and US customs at the airport. I'm thinking - Buffalo - January - More snow than I may care to deal with.

    I'm thinking I don't want to be near Buffalo any time of the year and also meat  *lunch break*



  • @serguey123 said:

    @OzPeter said:

     a medium sized company that seems well respected, cares about their employees, wants to do the best for their customers and doesn't cheap out on quotes.

    Such thing does not exist, if so let me know so I can start hunting unicorns

    I work for one of those.

    Edit: Of course it gets worse each year, especially since the Frenchies bought us. But when I started here, it fit that description.



  • @blakeyrat said:

    @serguey123 said:

    @OzPeter said:

     a medium sized company that seems well respected, cares about their employees, wants to do the best for their customers and doesn't cheap out on quotes.

    Such thing does not exist, if so let me know so I can start hunting unicorns

    I work for one of those.

    Unicorns?



  • @blakeyrat said:

    Edit: Of course it gets worse each year, especially since the Frenchies bought us.

    Then there is hope that the balance will be restored



  • @serguey123 said:

    @blakeyrat said:

    Edit: Of course it gets worse each year, especially since the Frenchies bought us.

    Then there is hope that the balance will be restored

    We work in fear, with the constant threat of Lotus Notes hanging over us! They also switched our hardware provider to HP!

    However, there is a thin ray of hope-- they're rolling-out Windows 7 64-bit on our computers.



  • @blakeyrat said:

    @serguey123 said:

    @blakeyrat said:

    Edit: Of course it gets worse each year, especially since the Frenchies bought us.

    Then there is hope that the balance will be restored

    We work in fear, with the constant threat of Lotus Notes hanging over us! They also switched our hardware provider to HP!

    However, there is a thin ray of hope-- they're rolling-out Windows 7 64-bit on our computers.

    NO, NO AND NO, workplaces should be full of darkness, agony, terror and evil, no ray of hope for you.  Either that or I'm a tad pissed about Obama raises freeze.



  • @serguey123 said:

    NO, NO AND NO, workplaces should be full of darkness, agony, terror and evil, no ray of hope for you.  Either that or I'm a tad pissed about Obama raises freeze.

    It sounds like the reason you don't believe in unicorns is that the Obama freeze will affect you - are you one of them gub'mint slackers I keep hearing about?



  • @OzPeter said:

    @serguey123 said:
    NO, NO AND NO, workplaces should be full of darkness, agony, terror and evil, no ray of hope for you.  Either that or I'm a tad pissed about Obama raises freeze.

     

    It sounds like the reason you don't believe in unicorns is that the Obama freeze will affect you - are you one of them gub'mint slackers I keep hearing about?

    I stopped believing in unicorns long before that.  I blame Oracle.

    Wheter this affect me directly or not, you do not want a disgruntled, underpaid federal worker. If TSA pat down are bad now imagine when they realize they won't be getting raises for over two years no matter what. As Bill Bryson said, you don't want to poke a humorless person that can give you a cavity search



  • @serguey123 said:

    [quote user="OzPeter"If TSA pat down are bad now ..

    Yesterday on TV when they were talking about all the extreme weather that was crossing the US and how it was screwing up air travel, I heard one meteorologist say that the most pleasant part of a trip was likely to be the TSA grope



  • @serguey123 said:

    Wheter this affect me directly or not, you do not want a disgruntled, underpaid federal worker.
    As opposed to the cheerful employees at the Harrisburg DMV who are so satisfied with life that they give out free hugs?



  • @OzPeter said:

    @serguey123 said:

    [quote user="OzPeter"If TSA pat down are bad now ..

    Yesterday on TV when they were talking about all the extreme weather that was crossing the US and how it was screwing up air travel, I heard one meteorologist say that the most pleasant part of a trip was likely to be the TSA grope

    Well bad wheater sucks and I wouldn't dare get on a plane with bad wheater unless I really, really need it, once during a small commute, small company little plane, one of the engines stopped, we got there safely, but the collective passengers were scared to death by this and 6 hours late.

    Lately with the new scanning machines and the frisking I have considered not flying anymore



  • @Xyro said:

    @serguey123 said:

    Wheter this affect me directly or not, you do not want a disgruntled, underpaid federal worker.
    As opposed to the cheerful employees at the Harrisburg DMV who are so satisfied with life that they give out free hugs?

    According to TV the DMV is hell on earth, so they get a pass

    <FONT color=#0e774a>en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reaper_(TV_series)</FONT><FONT color=#767676> </FONT>



  • @OzPeter said:

    I have to be near Toronto in January
    @OzPeter said:
    I will be selling off all the unicorn pelts
     

     

    ... keep the pelts.

    I have a relative there who says the air can get crisp in a very real and literal way.



  • @serguey123 said:

    Lately with the new scanning machines and the frisking I have considered not flying anymore

    Come on, the frisking can be a lot of fun when executed correctly and the scanning machines are almost a bit of Star Trek. Flying gets better and better.

    More seriously, I recently flew in the US and let me tell you, this is a piece of cake compared to landing on Dutch Schiphol airport coming from the Caribean.



  • @serguey123 said:

    @Xyro said:

    @serguey123 said:

    Wheter this affect me directly or not, you do not want a disgruntled, underpaid federal worker.
    As opposed to the cheerful employees at the Harrisburg DMV who are so satisfied with life that they give out free hugs?

    According to TV the DMV is hell on earth, so they get a pass

    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reaper_(TV_series)

    FYLFY

    It's nice that you know how to make your text a pretty color, now how about learning to make it clickable too?



  • @tdb said:

    @serguey123 said:

    @Xyro said:

    @serguey123 said:

    Wheter this affect me directly or not, you do not want a disgruntled, underpaid federal worker.
    As opposed to the cheerful employees at the Harrisburg DMV who are so satisfied with life that they give out free hugs?

    According to TV the DMV is hell on earth, so they get a pass

    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reaper_(TV_series)

    FYLFY

    It's nice that you know how to make your text a pretty color, now how about learning to make it clickable too?

    Where the fun will be in that?  Making this comment takes longer than pasting the address in your web browser of choice, also who here is retarded enough to click on links anyhow?

     


  • @b-redeker said:

    @serguey123 said:

    Lately with the new scanning machines and the frisking I have considered not flying anymore

    Come on, the frisking can be a lot of fun when executed correctly and the scanning machines are almost a bit of Star Trek. Flying gets better and better.

    More seriously, I recently flew in the US and let me tell you, this is a piece of cake compared to landing on Dutch Schiphol airport coming from the Caribean.

    There is already pr0n about security frisking.  Let me know when you get cancer or people makes fun of you because of your body (already happened, Miami Airport, resulted in violence and people getting fired). That is to be expected, even more if you are not that tanned although I would have expected the dutch to be more relaxed and are not those legal there anyways?


  • @serguey123 said:

    are not those legal there anyways?

    If you were talking about cocaine: no, that's rather frowned upon. If you are on any of those flights, expect:

    • questions: where are you going, where were you, what did you pay for your ticket, etc
    • dogs
    • regular customs
    • your baggage on a reserved belt, lots of police and customs, all baggage through a special scanner with you present.

    A couple years ago there were almost daily incidents with drug mules, including some of them dying on an airplane. Security is very tight now, and it seems to have stopped; at least on the last couiple flights I didn't hear "is there a doctor on board", which was pretty common then.



  • @b-redeker said:

    @serguey123 said:

    are not those legal there anyways?

    If you were talking about cocaine: no, that's rather frowned upon. If you are on any of those flights, expect:

    • questions: where are you going, where were you, what did you pay for your ticket, etc
    • dogs
    • regular customs
    • your baggage on a reserved belt, lots of police and customs, all baggage through a special scanner with you present.

    A couple years ago there were almost daily incidents with drug mules, including some of them dying on an airplane. Security is very tight now, and it seems to have stopped; at least on the last couiple flights I didn't hear "is there a doctor on board", which was pretty common then.

    Great, now what, the next thing you will tell me that there building other than windmills there.

    Also "regular customs" what do you mean? houdoe" and Gronings or other stuff like wearing wooden shoes?



  • @serguey123 said:

    Also "regular customs" what do you mean? houdoe" and Gronings or other stuff like wearing wooden shoes?

    Yes. Before entering the country, you will be clobbered over the head with a wooden shoe if you fail to produce a passport or pronounce Scheveningen incorrectly.



  • @b-redeker said:

    Before entering the country, you will be clobbered over the head with a wooden shoe if you fail to produce a passport or pronounce Scheveningen incorrectly.


    I guess, if I should ever go there, I'll have to ensure that I don't fail to pronounce Scheveningen incorrectly.



  • @Scarlet Manuka said:

    I'll have to ensure that I don't fail to pronounce Scheveningen incorrectly.
     

    Grachtengordel.



  • @dhromed said:

    @Scarlet Manuka said:

    I'll have to ensure that I don't fail to pronounce Scheveningen incorrectly.
     

    Grachtengordel.

    [url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_shibboleths#Dutch_.28Flemish.29_-_French]Schild en Vriend[/url]



  • I live in a suburb of Buffalo.  While anything is possible, there should not be too much snow on the route you'll take from the Buffalo Airport to Toronto, even in January (you avoid the Southtowns where most of the snow falls).  Whatever snow there is, this region can handle it easily unless it is a once in every 5 years type of storm ( 3 inches of snow in Atlanta is a way bigger problem than a foot up here).  If you have no experience driving in snow, then I wouldn't recommend driving, but it  is a lot faster to drive over the border than fly.  You will need a passport whether you drive or fly.




  • @Salami said:

    Whatever snow there is, this region can handle it easily unless it is a once in every 5 years type of storm
     

    Three words: October 12, 2006.



  • @Someone You Know said:

    Three words: October 12, 2006.
     

    Forty-eight words: I find it bad rhetorical form to use the "n words:" format, because it's a setup-action antiformat that basically never works as intended and always looks silly, like a man telling a joke and then finishing it with "get it? get it? %explanation%! It's hilarious!".



  • @Someone You Know said:

    Three words: October 12, 2006.

    Ah, of course. Wait, what?



  • @Salami said:

    3 inches of snow in Atlanta is a way bigger problem than a foot up here
     

     3 inches of snow would paralyze most of the state for a week.  TRWTF would be the immediate shortages of both bread and milk....



  • @dhromed said:

    @Someone You Know said:

    Three words: October 12, 2006.
     

    Forty-eight words: I find it bad rhetorical form to use the "n words:" format, because it's a setup-action antiformat that basically never works as intended and always looks silly, like a man telling a joke and then finishing it with "get it? get it? %explanation%! It's hilarious!".

     

    Three words: your country's underwater.



  • @Someone You Know said:

    Three words: your country's underwater.

    Three words: your grammar sucks.



  • @b-redeker said:

    @Someone You Know said:

    Three words: your country's underwater.

    Three words: your grammar sucks.

    Uh. That's perfectly cromulent grammar.



  • @Someone You Know said:

    @Salami said:

    Whatever snow there is, this region can handle it easily unless it is a once in every 5 years type of storm
     

    Three words: October 12, 2006.

    Are you suggesting that a once-in-two-hundred-year snowstorm is a counterpoint for Salami's assertion?

    I live north of the city and I had power and Internet during the storm of 2006.  Just this past week, some places south of Buffalo got 44 inches, but the north got 6.  The drive from the Buffalo airport to Toronto will be fine.  Wave to the house I grew up in just after you pass the power reservoir on the way over the Lewiston-Queenston bridge.



  • @dubbreak said:

    @OzPeter said:

    I think their is enough on his PO to support between 3 and 4 days. But I have to redo the math with travel from your location.

    Is that a direct quote? I can't believe they would mix up there/their. You obviously contract under retards, which of course is TRWTF.
     

    A few years ago a high level manager at the company I worked for sent out an email about a new company policy and ended it with "There will be no acceptions to this policy".

     



  • @El_Heffe said:

    A few years ago a high level manager at the company I worked for sent out an email about a new company policy and ended it with "There will be no acceptions to this policy".

     

     

    @A Little Glossary of Semantics, translated by Larry Marks said:

    [b]acception[/b]: sememe whose meaning includes socially coded afferent semes.

    I for one am glad that Larry translated that.



  • @Jaime said:

    @Someone You Know said:

    @Salami said:

    Whatever snow there is, this region can handle it easily unless it is a once in every 5 years type of storm
     

    Three words: October 12, 2006.

    Are you suggesting that a once-in-two-hundred-year snowstorm is a counterpoint for Salami's assertion?

    Just reminiscing, actually.

    @Jaime said:


    I live north of the city and I had power and Internet during the storm of 2006.  Just this past week, some places south of Buffalo got 44 inches, but the north got 6.  The drive from the Buffalo airport to Toronto will be fine.  Wave to the house I grew up in just after you pass the power reservoir on the way over the Lewiston-Queenston bridge.

     

    I had power, but no Internet, because a tree fell on the cable line. Another fell on my car, which amazingly received only superficial damage. The place where I was employed at the time at first tried to get me to come in to work on that Friday, and I had to respectfully point out that even if I could get the tree off my car, I still couldn't tell where the road ended and the sidewalk began, and both Buffalo and the town where I worked were under a driving ban.


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