Now we see why they are in HR



  •  From http://hr.blr.com/HR-news/Compensation/Job-Descriptions/Job-Title-Inflation-Whats-in-a-Name-/

    "Suppose, for example, that you have a sizable group of employees with the same job title—but 10 percent of them are high performers, 60 percent are just OK, another 30 percent are truly mediocre, and the last 10 percent are close to worthless."



  • @kc0a said:

     From http://hr.blr.com/HR-news/Compensation/Job-Descriptions/Job-Title-Inflation-Whats-in-a-Name-/

    "Suppose, for example, that you have a sizable group of employees with the same job title—but 10 percent of them are high performers, 60 percent are just OK, another 30 percent are truly mediocre, and the last 10 percent are close to worthless."

    I though this ratio was the norm, not everyone can be the "high performers"  I bet the whole "I need a better title" people are in the just ok and below range.  Most fo the high performers actually enjoy thier job and may actuall not care abotu the title as long as they are recognized.



  • @KattMan said:

    @kc0a said:

     From http://hr.blr.com/HR-news/Compensation/Job-Descriptions/Job-Title-Inflation-Whats-in-a-Name-/

    "Suppose, for example, that you have a sizable group of employees with the same job title—but 10 percent of them are high performers, 60 percent are just OK, another 30 percent are truly mediocre, and the last 10 percent are close to worthless."

    I though this ratio was the norm, not everyone can be the "high performers"  I bet the whole "I need a better title" people are in the just ok and below range.  Most fo the high performers actually enjoy thier job and may actuall not care abotu the title as long as they are recognized.

    Did you add those numbers up?  What's 10% + 60% + 30% + 10%?  Do you want to re-think your comment? 



  • @nonpartisan said:

    @KattMan said:

    @kc0a said:

     From http://hr.blr.com/HR-news/Compensation/Job-Descriptions/Job-Title-Inflation-Whats-in-a-Name-/

    "Suppose, for example, that you have a sizable group of employees with the same job title—but 10 percent of them are high performers, 60 percent are just OK, another 30 percent are truly mediocre, and the last 10 percent are close to worthless."

    I though this ratio was the norm, not everyone can be the "high performers"  I bet the whole "I need a better title" people are in the just ok and below range.  Most fo the high performers actually enjoy thier job and may actuall not care abotu the title as long as they are recognized.

    Did you add those numbers up?  What's 10% + 60% + 30% + 10%?  Do you want to re-think your comment? 

    KattMan is in the 10%.  (I'll leave it to you to decide which one)


  • So based off of the link, it is against the law to have work not match job title.  I wonder if this includes actual work not matching job description, since that could be used as an argument as to why developers should not be mopping floors (I am feeling too lazy to link to the other thread about that).



  • It's simple - the employees are giving 110%, so it seems like there are 10% more employees than there are, based on the amount of work that's getting done!



  • @Anketam said:

    So based off of the link, it is against the law to have work not match job title.  I wonder if this includes actual work not matching job description, since that could be used as an argument as to why developers should not be mopping floors (I am feeling too lazy to link to the other thread about that).
    You get into trouble when you pay someone salary, but they should be paid hourly. Inflating titles sometimes leads to a switch to salary, especially if the title has "supervisor" or "manager" in it.

    As for the job actually matching the title, my boss is perfectly safe. My last two titles (at two different companies) were "Senior Technology Consultant" and "Senior Application Consultant". I'm pretty sure almost any work would fit those titles.



  • @nonpartisan said:

    Did you add those numbers up?  What's 10% + 60% + 30% + 10%?  Do you want to re-think your comment? 

    Nope, I never mentioned numbers in my post, simply remarking on the other side of things.  The reporter not able to do math has no bearing on HR people or anyone else, this wasn't a quote, the reporter put that in himself, so yes I did read the article.

    Want to get pedantic over this?  Then the title should have instead been "Now we see why he is a reporter."

    On another angle, the worthless 10% are the same 10% performing while high.



  • @KattMan said:

    Nope, I never mentioned numbers in my post, simply remarking on the other side of things.  The reporter not able to do math has no bearing on HR people or anyone else, this wasn't a quote, the reporter put that in himself, so yes I did read the article.

    Want to get pedantic over this?  Then the title should have instead been "Now we see why he is a reporter."

    Probably a good choice that the reporter's name isn't listed.

    That said, writing for the HR section of a Web site, it's reasonable to infer that the person works or has worked in HR.

     



  • @nonpartisan said:

    @KattMan said:

    Nope, I never mentioned numbers in my post, simply remarking on the other side of things.  The reporter not able to do math has no bearing on HR people or anyone else, this wasn't a quote, the reporter put that in himself, so yes I did read the article.

    Want to get pedantic over this?  Then the title should have instead been "Now we see why he is a reporter."

    Probably a good choice that the reporter's name isn't listed.

    That said, writing for the HR section of a Web site, it's reasonable to infer that the person works or has worked in HR.

    But, hopefully, with his failure to do simple math and screwing up peoples pay rates, he has been fired and now writes about HR.

    Those who can, do; those who can't, blog about others who can.



  • @nonpartisan said:

    Did you add those numbers up?  What's 10% + 60% + 30% + 10%? 

     

    Yeah. 110%. Sports coaches and TV would lead me to believe that's synonymous with "all".



  • Even if you were right, that would be one plus one plus two plus one, not one plus two plus one plus one.

    Okay, fine. One plus two plus one... Shut up! The point is, there is one bullet left in this gun and guess who's gonna get it!



  • @nonpartisan said:

    @KattMan said:

    @kc0a said:

     From http://hr.blr.com/HR-news/Compensation/Job-Descriptions/Job-Title-Inflation-Whats-in-a-Name-/

    "Suppose, for example, that you have a sizable group of employees with the same job title—but 10 percent of them are high performers, 60 percent are just OK, another 30 percent are truly mediocre, and the last 10 percent are close to worthless."

    I though this ratio was the norm, not everyone can be the "high performers"  I bet the whole "I need a better title" people are in the just ok and below range.  Most fo the high performers actually enjoy thier job and may actuall not care abotu the title as long as they are recognized.

    Did you add those numbers up?  What's 10% + 60% + 30% + 10%?  Do you want to re-think your comment? 

    He didn't say anything about the total, only the ratio. When normalized to a standard scale, it's something like 9%, 55%, 27%, 9%.



  • @shadowman said:

    Even if you were right, that would be one plus one plus two plus one, not one plus two plus one plus one.

    Okay, fine. One plus two plus one... Shut up! The point is, there is one bullet left in this gun and guess who's gonna get it!

    Good Lord, shadowman made a post rather than fixing someone else's post.

    Anyways the author's last 10% was refering as a subset of the bottom 30%.  Could have been better worded but it is not like anyone around here ever gets picky over mispelled words, or grammar mistakes.



  • @nonpartisan said:

    That said, writing for the HR section of a Web site, it's reasonable to infer that the person works or has worked in HR.

    Just like it's reasonable to infer that sports writers were star athletes or that reporters who write about economics or policy actually have knowledge of either. Or what's more likely: reporters know nothing which is why they consider themselves experts at everything.



  • @Jaime said:

    My last two titles (at two different companies) were "Senior Technology Consultant" and "Senior Application Consultant". I'm pretty sure almost any work would fit those titles.

    My last title was something godawful like "Senior Systems Java Architect". I protested but was told that the investors wouldn't pay the salary I negotiated to someone with the title "Software and Systems Guy".



  • @morbiuswilters said:

    @Jaime said:
    My last two titles (at two different companies) were "Senior Technology Consultant" and "Senior Application Consultant". I'm pretty sure almost any work would fit those titles.

    My last title was something godawful like "Senior Systems Java Architect". I protested but was told that the investors wouldn't pay the salary I negotiated to someone with the title "Software and Systems Guy".

    My last title was Microcomputer Decision Support Specialist. Now it's Professional Services Engineer.

    Used to be no one knew what the hell my job was. Now I just sound like a prostitute.



  • My job title used to be Senior Web Analytics Engineer, which was simultaneously unique enough, specific enough, and vague enough to be a perfect combination.

    Alas I no longer have it.



  • My title is "Computer Scientist", although my duties are closer to "Systems Engineer".



  • @Someone You Know said:

    Now I just sound like a prostitute.

    You should review the wording of your contract quite carefully to see if producing such audio effects are a requirement of the job.

    I know I'd demand more pay.



  • @morbiuswilters said:

    Just like it's reasonable to infer that sports writers were star athletes
    That's a little overreaching.  I wouldn't necessarily expect that a sports writer was a star athlete.  I never said that this HR dude(tte) had ever worked HR for a Fortune 100 company.  But I would expect that a sports writer has a background in sports; that's not unreasonable.@morbiuswilters said:
    Or what's more likely: reporters know nothing which is why they consider themselves experts at everything.
    I'd say that's true for your generic AP writer, but for someone who has a speciality I'd expect them to have some background.



  • @nonpartisan said:

    @morbiuswilters said:
    Or what's more likely: reporters know nothing which is why they consider themselves experts at everything.

    I'd say that's true for your generic AP writer, but for someone who has a speciality I'd expect them to have some background.

    And that background these days is usually a journalism degree. The more senior folks may have been covering their field for a while, so they may have accumulated some knowledge about it, but not in the way that someone actually working in the field has. I'd say that a blogger covering some topic likely has more expertise than a journalist, since the blogger probably works in the field, and got into blogging on the side.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @kc0a said:

     From http://hr.blr.com/HR-news/Compensation/Job-Descriptions/Job-Title-Inflation-Whats-in-a-Name-/
    Employers may be tempted to inflate job titles for lots of reasons
    Apropos of nothing, I've noticed -of late- most of the people in my department (who have joined after I did, and still ask me questions about the codebase) have prepended 'senior' to their positions of 'software engineer' in the footers of their emails.



    I still don't advertise what exactly it is I do, to outsiders, in either my email sig or on my business cards - it saves a lot of hassle on-site or with new customers.



    For example "What do you mean you're only a programmer?" when I'm there discussing requirements. Or unbollocking stuff.



    Or "I want a grande-courvoisier embedded-management facilitator of software-complication[1]" when I'm explaining why what they're asking doesn't even make sense and they may have some reservations about my credentials based on some sentence on my email footers or the bit of card I've handed over.



    Not having those tags there makes my life easier when dealing with non-company people.





    [1] Pronunced 'comp-le-cass-ee-on'(silent 'n') - Inspired by a Sapphire and Steel episode - it describes what most of us would describe as 'feature creep.'



  • @PJH said:

    Not having those tags there makes my life easier when dealing with non-company people.

    Agreed. I've always thought you could tell a place was going down the toilet when they start requiring everyone to have a standardized signature with all this crap in it. First off, it creates the complications you're talking about. "Can I talk to your VP of Operations?" "For the moment, you can talk to me." "Well, it's just that your title is 'Senior Software Architect' and this is about hardware. Is there maybe a systems administrator I can speak to?" "I built and configured the servers, hired the sysadmins and trained them in our procedures. You can talk to me." Or it creates unrealistic expectations "It says right there you're the Senior Architect, can't you make the changes I want?" "Well, no, I have to get an understanding of what it is you want, guesstimate the time and effort it would take, and then take it to my VP to see if and where it fits in to our development schedule."

    And then they always want me to put my desk and cell numbers in my email sig even though I'm never at my desk and my cell is my own private one. And besides, I'm emailing people for quotes and the last thing I want is some sales drone dialing me up instead of emailing me back because he thinks it will be easier to land the sale if he can talk my ear off..



  • My title is the nicely-broad-but-still-vague "Systems and Network Operations Coordinator". As I'm in a union though, it's more to determine paygrade than an indication of my actual duties. FWIW, I admin the document management system.



  • @kc0a said:

    "Suppose, for example, that you have a sizable group of employees with the same job title—but 10 percent of them are high performers, 60 percent are just OK, another 30 percent are truly mediocre, and the last 10 percent are close to worthless."
     

    @Kurt von Hammerstein-Equord said:

    I divide my officers into four groups. There are clever, diligent,
    stupid, and lazy officers. Usually two characteristics are combined.
    Some are clever and diligent -- their place is the General Staff. The
    next lot are stupid and lazy -- they make up 90 percent of every army
    and are suited to routine duties. Anyone who is both clever and lazy is
    qualified for the highest leadership duties, because he possesses the
    intellectual clarity and the composure necessary for difficult
    decisions. One must beware of anyone who is stupid and diligent -- he
    must not be entrusted with any responsibility because he will always
    cause only mischief.

    It's funny because it's true.



  • @Someone You Know said:

    My last title was Microcomputer Decision Support Specialist. Now it's Professional Services Engineer.

    Used to be no one knew what the hell my job was. Now I just sound like a prostitute.

    Whereas before you sounded like someone who fits brassieres for PCs



  • @da Doctah said:

    @Someone You Know said:

    My last title was Microcomputer Decision Support Specialist. Now it's Professional Services Engineer.

    Used to be no one knew what the hell my job was. Now I just sound like a prostitute.

    Whereas before you sounded like someone who fits brassieres for PCs

    In the 70s. Because that's the last time anybody used the term "microcomputer"..



  • @Zylon said:

    @kc0a said:

    "Suppose, for example, that you have a sizable group of employees with the same job title—but 10 percent of them are high performers, 60 percent are just OK, another 30 percent are truly mediocre, and the last 10 percent are close to worthless."
     

    @Kurt von Hammerstein-Equord said:

    I divide my officers into four groups. There are clever, diligent,
    stupid, and lazy officers. Usually two characteristics are combined.
    Some are clever and diligent -- their place is the General Staff. The
    next lot are stupid and lazy -- they make up 90 percent of every army
    and are suited to routine duties. Anyone who is both clever and lazy is
    qualified for the highest leadership duties, because he possesses the
    intellectual clarity and the composure necessary for difficult
    decisions. One must beware of anyone who is stupid and diligent -- he
    must not be entrusted with any responsibility because he will always
    cause only mischief.

    It's funny because it's true.

    I always thought the best developers were clever and lazy; smart enough to do things right but their laziness prevents them from overengineering things. Some of the worst code I've seen was from extremely diligent people (clever or stupid) who would churn out thousands of lines of code a day, usually without any consideration for easier, more elegant solutions.



  • @PJH said:

    I've noticed -of late- most of the people in my department (who have joined after I did, and still ask me questions about the codebase) have prepended 'senior' to their positions of 'software engineer' in the footers of their emails.

    Someone who worked here proudly called himself "Senior Technical Consultant", despite the fact there were no junior consultant. He was also the one who wrote our A+ course notes, not understanding the difference between parallel and serial (he originally thought it was 9 pins v 25).

    I used to be called "Senior Trainer" on our company website but had that removed - on the grounds that seniority referred to length of service and could be confused with some internal rank structure, of which none exists (not in our dept, anyway).


    @PJH said:

    I still don't advertise what exactly it is I do, to outsiders, in either my email sig or on my business cards - it saves a lot of hassle on-site or with new customers.

    I've adopted this principle recently: since my role keeps changing, I've had any job title removed from my new biz cards, just featuring contact details. Space has been left for customers to optionally fill in a title/description to suit.



  • @Cassidy said:

    You should review the wording of your contract quite carefully to see if producing such audio effects are a requirement of the job.

    I know I'd demand more pay.

    +1, Career Advice

    @morbiuswilters said:

    @da Doctah said:

    @Someone You Know said:

    My last title was Microcomputer Decision Support Specialist. Now it's Professional Services Engineer.

    Used to be no one knew what the hell my job was. Now I just sound like a prostitute.

    Whereas before you sounded like someone who fits brassieres for PCs

    In the 70s. Because that's the last time anybody used the term "microcomputer"..

    Exactly. This was a job in the civil service system of the State of New York. All the titles and job descriptions were like this; it was such an ordeal to get any of them changed or updated that no one bothered trying anymore. When you hired someone you picked a title that the person's experience qualified him for, and then stretched the title to fit what they'd actually be doing. There were several other people with this title, which we always just called MCDSS, including a web developer, a DBA, a Domino admin, etc.

    The job description for my title, which I received as a photocopy of a typewritten page that actually did have a date from the 1970s on it, required "a working knowledge of COBOL". When I pointed this out to my supervisor, he asked if I could spell COBOL. I spelled it correctly and he said, "Works for me!"



  • @Cassidy said:

    Someone who worked here proudly called himself "Senior Technical Consultant", despite the fact there were no junior consultant. He was also the one who wrote our A+ course notes, not understanding the difference between parallel and serial (he originally thought it was 9 pins v 25).

    Best is "Lead Developer"... on a team of one.

     

     



  • @blakeyrat said:

    My job title used to be Senior Web Analytics Engineer, which was simultaneously unique enough, specific enough, and vague enough to be a perfect combination.

    I go by Data Architect, which has similar properties.



  • @morbiuswilters said:

    I always thought the best developers were clever and lazy; smart enough to do things right but their laziness prevents them from overengineering things.

    That's called constructive laziness.



  • On dealing with the mediocre and worthless, we simply call them by another name - "former employee".  Saves trouble of having to give the good performers elevated job titles to differentiate.



  •  TRWTF is thinking that there is a meaningful distinction between "just OK" and "mediocre".  



  • @operagost said:

     TRWTF is thinking that there is a meaningful distinction between "just OK" and "mediocre".  

    Well, pedantically speaking, OK is better than mediocre.



  • @morbiuswilters said:

    Well, pedantically speaking, OK is better than mediocre.

    Well then, if you're being pedantic and not just talking out your ass-- [CITATION NEEDED].


     



  • @Zylon said:

    @morbiuswilters said:

    Well, pedantically speaking, OK is better than mediocre.

    Well then, if you're being pedantic and not just talking out your ass-- [CITATION NEEDED].

    Well, this is pretty basic vocabulary stuff, but if you must you can consult a dictionary. "OK" means "adequate" with a positive connotation, whereas "mediocre" means "barely adequate" or "inferior" with a negative connotation. From the writer's usage, we can infer that they clearly intended "just OK" to be better than "truly mediocre", which is consistent with the definition and common usage. Therefore, trying to correct the writer by claiming "just OK" and "truly mediocre" should mean the same thing is incorrect.

    I may be being pedantic, but I'm not a dickweed because I'm correcting someone who is being a pedantic dickweed (albeit an incorrect one).



  • @morbiuswilters said:

    Well, this is pretty basic vocabulary stuff, but if you must you can consult a dictionary. "OK" means "adequate" with a positive connotation, whereas "mediocre" means "barely adequate" or "inferior" with a negative connotation. From the writer's usage, we can infer that they clearly intended "just OK" to be better than "truly mediocre", which is consistent with the definition and common usage. Therefore, trying to correct the writer by claiming "just OK" and "truly mediocre" should mean the same thing is incorrect.

    Hmm...I would have said that they weren't directly comparable, since they're talking about different things. But then, I was thinking of mediocre definition one, from here:

    @reference.com said:
    of only ordinary or moderate quality; neither good nor bad; barely adequate: The car gets only mediocre mileage, but it's fun to drive. Synonyms: undistinguished, commonplace, pedestrian, everyday; run-of-the-mill

    So, barely adequate is in there, but not so much the negativity (that's in definition 2 at the site). But I tend to think of it as a term of comparison. Whereas OK is signalling some fitness for purpose, as in whether or not it gets the job done. I can think of situations where either one could be a higher standard than the other.

    @morbiuswilters said:

    I may be being pedantic, but I'm not a dickweed because I'm correcting someone who is being a pedantic dickweed (albeit an incorrect one).

    Hah! I just showed that you're both equally big dicks! Err...weeds.



  • @boomzilla said:

    So, barely adequate is in there, but not so much the negativity (that's in definition 2 at the site). But I tend to think of it as a term of comparison. Whereas OK is signalling some fitness for purpose, as in whether or not it gets the job done.

    Both can be used to indicate quality or fitness.

    @boomzilla said:

    I can think of situations where either one could be a higher standard than the other.

    Please give an example where "mediocre" is better than "OK".

    Even if you have one, it's immaterial. The question isn't "Do the lower end of 'OK' and the upper end of 'mediocre' overlap?" the question is "Would a reasonable person conclude from the usage that 'OK' is meant to signify something better than 'mediocre'?" If so, then it was an appropriate use of the terms. They may overlap some at their extremes, but in common usage (especially as used by the reporter), one is better than the other.



  • @morbiuswilters said:

    Even if you have one, it's immaterial. The question isn't "Do the lower end of 'OK' and the upper end of 'mediocre' overlap?" the question is "Would a reasonable person conclude from the usage that 'OK' is meant to signify something better than 'mediocre'?" If so, then it was an appropriate use of the terms. They may overlap some at their extremes, but in common usage (especially as used by the reporter), one is better than the other.

    No. I'm not going to argue this. We've both made our assertions, and will simply live with them. I do not care enough about the topic to continue to post arguments about it.



  • @boomzilla said:

    @morbiuswilters said:
    Even if you have one, it's immaterial. The question isn't "Do the lower end of 'OK' and the upper end of 'mediocre' overlap?" the question is "Would a reasonable person conclude from the usage that 'OK' is meant to signify something better than 'mediocre'?" If so, then it was an appropriate use of the terms. They may overlap some at their extremes, but in common usage (especially as used by the reporter), one is better than the other.

    No. I'm not going to argue this. We've both made our assertions, and will simply live with them. I do not care enough about the topic to continue to post arguments about it.

    I'll take this to mean "I can't come up with any example and thus have no support for my assertion. I withdraw my claims and humbly beg your quarter, my liege."



  • @morbiuswilters said:

    @boomzilla said:
    @morbiuswilters said:
    Even if you have one, it's immaterial. The question isn't "Do the lower end of 'OK' and the upper end of 'mediocre' overlap?" the question is "Would a reasonable person conclude from the usage that 'OK' is meant to signify something better than 'mediocre'?" If so, then it was an appropriate use of the terms. They may overlap some at their extremes, but in common usage (especially as used by the reporter), one is better than the other.

    No. I'm not going to argue this. We've both made our assertions, and will simply live with them. I do not care enough about the topic to continue to post arguments about it.

    I'll take this to mean "I can't come up with any example and thus have no support for my assertion. I withdraw my claims and humbly beg your quarter, my liege."

    And I'll take this to mean, "I can't read simple English for comprehension." It's now a win-win.



  • @boomzilla said:

    It's now a win-win.
     

    But only for you two.


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