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Friday, September 4, 2009
Paragon Services - Serv-U-Success
Subsidiary of Serv-U-Success
I started with this company 7 years ago, and when I started they were great to work for. We had more hours than we could fill, they treated us well, recognized us when we went above and beyond, which was often, and generally made it a wonderful place to work.
About three years ago the top manager left and things went straight to hell in a handbasket. The day to day management was turned over to Pete Hatch and Brian Neeley and, although you will find some of this hard to believe, it is all true.
They will not talk to us, period. We work nights, and our supervisor obviously works the same schedule. There are times when I as well as others have had some issues to address and, because we knew our supervisor was sleeping, attempted to contact the office to take care of it. We were reprimanded and so was our supervisor. This after they told all of the new hires in a company meeting that "we maintain an open door policy and you can contact us any time." They actually wanted our supervisor to write us up for attempting to contact them. Luckily our supervisor is not that stupid.
We used to get our schedules by 11:00 AM every day, but since the new "management" took over, we are lucky if we get it by 2:00 PMand it has been as late as 4:30 PM. They expect us to just sit around and wait and hopefully there will be a message. It doesn't matter that we might be able to use that time productively by devoting that time to other responsibilities we might have. I pointed this out to them, explaining that I did not want to work all day around the house and then find out that I have to work, but be too tired to do so. Their response was "c'mon, you can't have THAT much to do", as if I don't have a life outside of my employment, which brings me to my next little story.
We get our work assignments by voicemail on a daily basis. When things slowed down earlier this year, they simply stopped leaving voicemails while expecting us to sit around until 5:00 PM, which is the cutoff time for voicemails waiting for the possibility that we might actually work on any given night. I asked them to at least leave a message at the beginning of the week informing us that there would be no work that week if in fact that was the case. They ignored that request, and did not leave ANY form of communication for 2 months, leaving us to wonder whether or not the place was still in business. When they finally did call, I had made a committment to someone for that week, and Paragon was UPSET because I did not let them know that I would not be available that week.
We have had an ongoing fight with the management because they routinely under-staff and over-schedule projects. We are never in the same location and the time it takes to drive can be as long as 4 hours one way for the work assignment. Last week was one such case and those involved had worked 19 hours the night before. When we saw that the project was under-staffed and would take anywhere from 12 to 15 hours plus the 4 hour return drive, we called them and told them that we were worn out and if we did this, we would not be in any shape to drive which was absolutely true. They FORCED us to do the project, and after 12.5 hours I had to leave because I had a doctor's appointment 3 hours away. The rest of the crew continued to work. I did some research and discovered what I already knew, that by driving in that condition, if we were involved in an accident, we could be held not only civilly liable, but depending on whether there were injuries or not, criminally liable. This had been pointed out to them before, but THEY DON'T CARE. The reason they gave for forcing us to start and complete the project that night was that there was not another available night during the upcoming week when they could reschedule it. NOBODY worked Monday night. There was no schedule for Monday, yet they insisted that we endanger not only ourselves, but possible others on the road, all for the sake of a buck! But wait, the story about these two caring and loving individuals gets better!
Last Friday I had some serious questions about my check, questions that could very well have prevented me from cashing it. I needed to get medication because, in addition to the lack of work, they were not scheduling me on the nights I was available, and I had been without my medication for a month and a half. I knew that my supervisor was sleeping because he had worked 20 hours straight, so I sent an email to Pete Hatch asking him about the problems, and making it clear that if there was a mistake that I would somehow need to borrow some money so I could get my medication and I was on my way to the doctor for an appointment. I asked him to please call me so that I would know what to do. HE EMAILED ME knowing full well that I was away from my computer, so I had to cash the check anyway to get my medication and pray that there were actually no problems.
These people treat us like dogs. They expect us to work 50 or 60 hours a week and drive sometimes as high as 30 hours on top of that to get to and from work. No matter how many times I have reminded them about my availability, which they agreed to, they still fail to schedule me on those days, or they will schedule just one day, knowing that I need to work to get my medication to live. Up until now, I have been 110% loyal to these people, doing anything and everything I could to make their reputation gold. No more. They have aboslutely no consideration for those who work for them, they (Pete Hatch and Brian Neeley) abuse their employees with no thought given to our health or safety, and, inspite of the fact that there have been many times when we have worked until we dropped, are of the opinion that we do not deserve a simple thank you, that to the contrary, we should be thanking THEM.
Pete and Brian, if you read this, and I hope you do, I refuse to thank you for the weekly and monthly abuse you heap on us. Furthermore, I will do everything I can to keep other unsuspecting people from falling into your trap. You are NOT a good company to work for anymore. You lie to prospective employees about the work available, so much so that one poor kid went off to college this year without any money because he turned down what he thought were worse offers than yours because you LIED TO HIM ABOUT THE AVAILABILITY OF WORK. He spent the rest of the summer trying unsuccessfully to get another job, because by the time he realized you had duped him, it was too late. You two ought to be ashamed of yourselves, although I know that will never happen, because you refuse to listen to anything your employees say and brush us off as incompetent boobs who couldn't possibly have a valuable opinion, thought, or insight.
Thanks guys for not scheduling me according to my availability again this week, you are true to form. For those of you who may run across Paragon Services, Inc., whose parent company is Serv-U-Success, run like the wind. Go work at Subway if you have to, but do not work for these guys. You will never be treated worse than you will be by these people. That aside, I have filed complaints with OSHA, with ADA, and with the Department of Transportatioin regarding their blatant disregard for our safety and health. I could go on and on, but I will leave it with this final comment; If there was a Worst Employer of the Year award, these guys would win, hands down!!
Grand Rapids Michigan