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Example of make work inefficiency in the Public Sector


cyberianpan

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Jan 18, 2006
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Today I received a "National Employment Survey 2009 Employee Questionaire". I am obliged by statute to fill it out. Now I agree these statistics are valuable, however the collection method

1) Print and post me the form
2) Me to fill out
3) Post it back
4) CSO staff to scan it in (manually typing if necessary)

Is from the 1980's. Simple fact is that anyone who needs to can get web access. Yet the PS resist any change, their excuse for this one is likely a bleeding heart variant of
"Well not everyone has Internet access"
Fact is that these days it is more incovenient for most people to get postal access.

cYp
 

Telemachus

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Apr 8, 2004
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en.wikipedia.org
An optional internet form would make sense.

A lot of people arent computer literate and have no intention of becoming so.
 

johndodger

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May 5, 2010
Messages
1,848
Yet another "lets bash and blame the public sector workers for everything and leave FF and their banker and developer friends off the hook" thread.

What makes you think the CSO is typical of the Public Service?

Have you asked the CSO why they are using this method? It is concievable that there are legitimate plausable reasons for it.
 

Podolski1.5

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Joined
May 31, 2009
Messages
576
Firstly you're assuming that everybody is computer literate. It's one thing being able to get access to a computer at a local internet café, but what about those who have never used a computer.

Secondly you seem to think this is a malaise of the public service. This assumes that usage of paper is a thing of the past in the private sector. Hardly.

Thirdly this "National Employment Survey" was an invention of government in an attempt to massage unemployment downwards.

The public service and the wider public sector is a diverse group of people at different levels doing many different jobs. It contains senior managerial figures who in many cases are government hacks, but the majority of its staff are ordinary workers, quite a lot of them on lower pay than those in the private sector.

It's the usual lazy practice of tarring everyone in the public sector with the same dirty brush.
 

deiseguy

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May 11, 2009
Messages
1,346
It is concievable that there are legitimate plausable reasons for it.
No it is not conceivable that there are any "plausible" reasons for it. I'm sure the CSO will come up with a list of "reasons" none of them plausible to anyone who has to account for the money they spend.
 

PollPot

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Feb 18, 2009
Messages
190
i work in the private sector but i have close family in the public sector so I think i understand some bit of both sides. The inefficiency in the public sector is phenomenal BUT it's not caused by the majority of workers in the public sector, it's because none of them have the power to change the system and decisions just get bounced from one person to another, SO my suggestion is to cut the obscene salaries of the upper echelons of management and bring in a full and fundamental review of systems, to include the staff suggestions (who could probably tell you more of the inefficiencies in their area than any daft consultant), then we'll see. It's not the majority of workers in the public sector that need to change, it's the heads at the top. In theory, the Croke park agreement should be ripped up and the efficiencies imposed anyway but all that will happen in that case is that those on cushy numbers will be left alone and the regular staff penalised.

I cant start a thread and apologies if there is one somewhere, but I would love to get one started of stories from people that are/were inside the public sector of the most daft and inefficient things they have come across.
 
Last edited:

Brehon

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Jul 16, 2010
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www.irishliberalparty.org
I believe this form is for employers i.e. business owners and sole traders. If a business owner or sole trader can't use a computer for basic data input in 2010 I would be very surprised. Access may be an issue but in those cases people can decide to post. Problem is that if this form is put out for public tender to consultants it will probably end up costing millions or 10's of millions to implement unless managed very well with a good contract and onus on the consultants. I agree that the front line staff should be allowed to promote efficiencies. However the marxists in the unions don't like staff having "ideas" and getting their fellow workers to change their ways for the good of the customer.
 

powderfinger

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Joined
Jun 13, 2007
Messages
3,353
i work in the private sector but i have close family in the public sector so I think i understand some bit of both sides. The inefficiency in the public sector is phenomenal BUT it's not caused by the majority of workers in the public sector, it's because none of them have the power to change the system and decisions just get bounced from one person to another, SO my suggestion is to cut the obscene salaries of the upper echelons of management and bring in a full and fundamental review of systems, to include the staff suggestions (who could probably tell you more of the inefficiencies in their area than any daft consultant), then we'll see. It's not the majority of workers in the public sector that need to change, it's the heads at the top. In theory, the Croke park agreement should be ripped up and the efficiencies imposed anyway but all that will happen in that case is that those on cushy numbers will be left alone and the regular staff penalised.

I cant start a thread and apologies if there is one somewhere, but I would love to get one started of stories from people that are/were inside the public sector of the most daft and inefficient things they have come across.
You could add to the thread below from last year Pollpot.
http://www.politics.ie/economy/111903-public-sector-gravy-fact-fiction.html
 

civilserpant

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Joined
Oct 21, 2010
Messages
674
Today I received a "National Employment Survey 2009 Employee Questionaire". I am obliged by statute to fill it out.

Simple fact is that anyone who needs to can get web access. Yet the PS resist any change, their excuse for this one is likely a bleeding heart variant of
"Well not everyone has Internet access"
cYp
What an incredibly naive post.

"I am obliged by statute" and then "Simple fact is that anyone who needs to can get web access". **shakes head**

Simple fact is that not everybody who needs to can get web access, or can use a PC. Stats show that about 60% of houses have a PC, ie: 40% don't and not everyone works in an office with a web browser.

The idea of my IT illiterate dad having to go to a web cafe to print off some form that he is 'obliged' to fill out is laughable. Cyp seems to think everyone operates in the little world he does.

You just perfectly showed the difference between the private sector mindset and public sector obligation to 'all' the people. You fundamentally don't understand what a public service obligation is.
 

The OD

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Joined
Oct 10, 2005
Messages
11,435
Yet another "lets bash and blame the public sector workers for everything and leave FF and their banker and developer friends off the hook" thread.

What makes you think the CSO is typical of the Public Service?

Have you asked the CSO why they are using this method? It is concievable that there are legitimate plausable reasons for it.
So, someone cannot have a thread questioning the activities of the CS unless they also attack those who are, in fairness, far more responsible for the mess we are in?

So, if you attack FF and the bankers, is it then OK to attack the CS? My dealings with them have made me think of them as being the un-Civil lack of Service.

Using pen and paper like this is ridiculous in this day and age. An online form would be quicker, produce results that can be instantly entered into a database, reduce the need for someone to sit down and enter the information into the system....ah, there we go, now we come to it. Creating work for themselves.

Now, FF and the bankers are utter b@stards. Happy?
 

Harmonica

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Joined
Jul 2, 2009
Messages
5,827
So, someone cannot have a thread questioning the activities of the CS unless they also attack those who are, in fairness, far more responsible for the mess we are in?
Seems that is the case. It is the same way accusations of waste are countered with the bank bailout billions.

Click

Seems this is largely an employer survey. I am sure every employer would prefer a web link.
 

slumdog1971

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Joined
Feb 24, 2009
Messages
616
Using pen and paper like this is ridiculous in this day and age. An online form would be quicker, produce results that can be instantly entered into a database, reduce the need for someone to sit down and enter the information into the system....ah, there we go, now we come to it. Creating work for themselves.
So what you really want is a public service that serves you alone.

I agree that using pen and paper is outdated and crude but the ps doesn't just deal with people who have access to internet or access to pc's. It has to deal with everyone in society.

This really is a ridicilous thread set up with the simple intention of attacking ps again.

Why doesn't the thread offer solutions? Like using shared internet facilites at a local chamber of commerce or if they have on line facilities that the CSO just emails them a reminder to fill out their form. There are many simple solutions.

It really is not about keep work for themselves. That's just plain silly
 

slumdog1971

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Feb 24, 2009
Messages
616
Seems that is the case. It is the same way accusations of waste are countered with the bank bailout billions.

Click

Seems this is largely an employer survey. I am sure every employer would prefer a web link.

Why don't you just contact the CSO and request an electronic format of the form?

Use the head a small bit. ! Stop jumping on the band wagon and start thinking for yourself
 

Expatriot

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Dec 7, 2009
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Do examples from AIB and Quinn count or is it only people from outside of the protected circle that can be attacked on this thread too?
 

Mar Tweedy

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Dec 12, 2008
Messages
625
What an incredibly naive post.
The idea of my IT illiterate dad having to go to a web cafe to print off some form that he is 'obliged' to fill out is laughable. Cyp seems to think everyone operates in the little world he does.

You just perfectly showed the difference between the private sector mindset and public sector obligation to 'all' the people. You fundamentally don't understand what a public service obligation is.
+++1
 

brughahaha

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Jun 1, 2009
Messages
15,306
Why don't you just contact the CSO and request an electronic format of the form?

Use the head a small bit. ! Stop jumping on the band wagon and start thinking for yourself

Well if its anything like my experience that would take a morning

Received a letter from the revenue Commisioners instructing me to fill in a form(importing small piece of equip not available here, less that 500) within 5 days or equpiment would be returned to sender. Form not included ... form not available online ........form not available in O'Connell street revenue office .... form only available in Docks (no public transport, home from town drive to the docks!) (might have found out this information if any of the 9 calls I made to Port Laois (the issuing office ) had been answered ... All for one form ... one entire morning

Now are you really telling me there is no way of streamlining a system like this ??? by maybe putting ALL forms online in PDF format Seriously??

BTW I have about a half dozen of these experiences
 

Mar Tweedy

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Joined
Dec 12, 2008
Messages
625
The CSO is full of statisticians who think about maximising returns on the surveys they do for every piece of work they do. Great deliberation goes into picking questions, how to phrase them and maximising returns.

If they are doing it this way, I am reasonably sure that this is because they have found that that is the best way to maximise returns from a range of employers/employees. For example if the primary method of return is via the internet, then you are already biasing the survey towards employers/employees in offices, which are usually higher paid forms of work as opposed to manual and lower paid work, or biasing it against rural areas including farming, and areas where instant IT access isn't part of the deal or broadband isn't available.

I agree with civilserpant, the OP is making the fundamental mistake of assuming everyone is "like him/her", so policy that does not treat everyone as if they are "like him/her" is inefficient :roll:
 

cyberianpan

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Jan 18, 2006
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Website
www.google.com
What an incredibly naive post.

"I am obliged by statute" and then "Simple fact is that anyone who needs to can get web access". **shakes head**

Simple fact is that not everybody who needs to can get web access, or can use a PC. Stats show that about 60% of houses have a PC, ie: 40% don't and not everyone works in an office with a web browser.

The idea of my IT illiterate dad having to go to a web cafe to print off some form that he is 'obliged' to fill out is laughable. Cyp seems to think everyone operates in the little world he does.

You just perfectly showed the difference between the private sector mindset and public sector obligation to 'all' the people. You fundamentally don't understand what a public service obligation is.

Many people are illiterate, so obliging them to fill out any form (be it paper or www) is an issue

Fact is that via work or home the vast majority of people have www, and those that don't can be faciliated by friends etc

If the Revenue require you to have a postal address: you can be required to have an email address

The old world "but that's how things are always done around here" mindset is what holds back PS efficiency

cYp
 

Expatriot

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Dec 7, 2009
Messages
4,325
Try opening a bank account on line without signing an papers.
Or buying shares or a house.
Or a mobile phone.
The private sector is so 18th century, what all this paper trail about?
 
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