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    • worried123
    • By worried123 16th Jul 17, 10:37 AM
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    worried123
    health and safety issue?
    • #1
    • 16th Jul 17, 10:37 AM
    health and safety issue? 16th Jul 17 at 10:37 AM
    I have worked for a research company for very many years.
    I mainly do straight door knocking and we are given roads to work in - a job will run over one or two days.

    As a woman I keep my computer in a bag and i take it out at the doorstep when somebody will do an interview....I have done it this way for over 20 years.

    We have anther kind of work where the job runs for weeks or until finished where addresses are all over the place and you have to code an outcome at every address you call at as you have to make several visits and coding it up helps you see what times you have called and when is a good time to call back etc and make any computerised notes to help you - interviewers will often go back to their car to code up.

    I have been told that i must code an outcome at every address i call at whilst doing straight door to door on one or two day jobs.
    (firstly it is irrelevant. secondly its a device only to help us know on a second day where we can go back to - its time consuming and the computer doesnt always display addresses in sequence etc.....they want you to code in no contact and refusal and then when we achieve an interview we have to miss 3 doors and they actually want us to code into the next 3 addresses - miss three doors....)

    I have very bad neck and back problems from using their machines over the years and i cannot spend 6 hours coding outcomes which are time consuming and irrelevant whilst carrying the machine in a case over my shoulder- i have always taken my machine out of my bag when i get an interview and i even ask sometimes whether i can put the computer down whilst i interview

    Also it would mean standing on people`s drive fiddling around with the machine to put in a non contact and its too intrusive.....would you want somebody loitering on your drive putting in data as to whether your property is empty and at what time......i feel its not acceptable.....its like you are vetting the place....

    More importantly i am a woman and i have never walked around with my lap top on show our job already carries safety implications....they want you to visibly carry it around all the time bashing in data. We can work in dodgey parts of london as well and in the winter we also work in the dark. Also how do you hold an umbrella when its pouring with rain etc.....this type of work is volume - you have to get loads in a day and you cannot do that if you are spending the day coding in fiddling wth a machine that doesnt always do what you want it to do.......and its going to exacerbate my neck problems which has been caused by using the machine in the first place....we used to use really heavy machines.

    Other research companies do not bash in data outcome codes for straight door to door and i have never done it this way in over 20 years....its stressful and its going to impinge on my back and neck problems...i will not be able to carry an umbrella in the pouring rain so will get soaking wet. (will have to also carry a separate bag as we are required to collect things to send back to them.. I will be visibly coding data outside peoples homes (i spend most of my working life reassuring people about the data protection act etc and privacy which people are becoming more and more suspicious of.....discretion has to be used........and maybe they banged in data at the doorstep many years ago - these days its so unacceptable. I also think it puts me at risk as a woman walking around with a computer visibly on show.....and i feel the people who stipulate this needs to be done have never worked out in the field and have an idea of how incredibly stressful our work is.....we only get paid for what we do anyway - and you just knock and move on and try to get this done as quickly as possible....it would also take up too much time as you tap in an outcome code and then the computer opens up a different survey and you have stand there fiddling with the machine......

    Can they insist that i do this please - it may seem like a small thing but i think i would have to leave and go over to a company that does not record irrelevant data at every door on random location work.....this has made me feel so stressed out....also i believe they cannot make me walk around with a computer on show it isnt safe and when i was trained with the company before we went back to being the company that i used to work for i was trained by a female supervisor (we did not code data at every door) to carry the computer around hidden in a bag - a normal shoulder bag and take it out when i interviewed for safety.

    (i have found that DSE regulations suggests 10 minute screen breaks every hour and carrying a lap top also increases the risk of back injuries and the risk of attack and theft. All employers have a duty to ensure the health, safety and welfare oat work of their employees under health and safety at work act

    sorry for long ramble...thank you.
    Last edited by worried123; 18-07-2017 at 1:53 PM.
Page 2
    • worried123
    • By worried123 16th Jul 17, 10:55 PM
    • 293 Posts
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    worried123
    I haven't been on this forum for too long, but I've come across Sangie before....

    You aren't the first person to say "maybe you actually work for them" to Sangie

    I'm beginning to think that either Sangie has a wealth of experience in dealing with employee queries (union/tribunal work?) or that they have about 5 jobs on the go at once
    Originally posted by ForceAwakens

    Thank you force awakens...i was beginning to think it was just me
    • gettingtheresometime
    • By gettingtheresometime 16th Jul 17, 11:25 PM
    • 2,866 Posts
    • 6,478 Thanks
    gettingtheresometime
    Thank you force awakens...i was beginning to think it was just me
    Originally posted by worried123
    I think you misunderstood force's reply......
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    • worried123
    • By worried123 17th Jul 17, 12:07 AM
    • 293 Posts
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    worried123
    However, i never said that i `think` i work for them. my employment status was never an issue - i `do` work for them....i am glad that i dont work for `sangie` thats for sure. i would like to think that i did understand forces reply - i have just looked at other threads - unfair dismissal as one and think i got off lightly with sangie....good grief!!! who is she?
    Last edited by worried123; 17-07-2017 at 12:41 AM.
    • worried123
    • By worried123 17th Jul 17, 12:20 AM
    • 293 Posts
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    worried123
    Does it cheer you up at all to know that you have cheered me up? I am struggling with PRINCE2 project management ATM - the most boring course I have ever done. Your predicament made me think about breaking your task down into work packages..... perhaps this boring course is having a good effect after all!
    Originally posted by jobbingmusician
    I am glad that i have at least cheered somebody up....good luck with your course - hope it becomes less boring and thanks again for your helpful suggestion...constructive help..thank you.

    on that happy note i will bow out of this thread before i am blasted again by somebody. all the best.
    • Geoff1963
    • By Geoff1963 17th Jul 17, 12:28 AM
    • 1,057 Posts
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    Geoff1963
    There are thousands of interviewers and we all have the same machines...work is downloaded and uploaded from the machine...it wouldn't be possible to use anything smaller
    we used to use really heavy machines
    Sounds like they need to upgrade their IT more often.
    • Petethespider
    • By Petethespider 17th Jul 17, 12:41 AM
    • 90 Posts
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    Petethespider
    As a market researcher using the lap top I totally get where you are coming from, it's is heavy. Add to that the rucksack we are supposed to carry it in plus the leads and plugs ( in case the battery dies) yep it's a killer on the arms

    I just stopped carrying the rucksack, that was left in the car, and I've never ever managed an umbrella , always a hat ( none of my co workers use umberellas, always rain hats)

    Life I have to admit was easier with paperwork

    Oh, I'm actually a Worker. I've no gaurenteed hours, they don't have to offer work, I don't have to accept. I get holiday and sick pay and I'm free to work around other employment
    • worried123
    • By worried123 17th Jul 17, 11:30 AM
    • 293 Posts
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    worried123
    Hi - can i ask whether you code in an outcome at every single door and even code in miss three doors after succesful interviews on bus (not pre selected as we know these visits must be coded) but on straight door knocking - bus - etc....

    nice to meet a fellow sufferer !!
    • Savvy_Sue
    • By Savvy_Sue 17th Jul 17, 9:53 PM
    • 37,733 Posts
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    Savvy_Sue
    There are thousands of interviewers and we all have the same machines...work is downloaded and uploaded from the machine...it wouldn't be possible to use anything smaller
    Originally posted by worried123
    I'm almost certain that in this day and age, it would be eminently possible to use something smaller ... or lighter. However I can well imagine that an employer wouldn't necessarily want the cost of upgrading all the tech all at once!
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    • Petethespider
    • By Petethespider 17th Jul 17, 10:10 PM
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    Petethespider
    No we don't have record on the laptop every house called at , I record that on paper for my own use.

    Ideally we would get get an interview every address and be offered a table and chair. I've done many an interview on the door step in the rain at night. I've followed people around whilst that are washing their car even. Yes carrying the laptop ( ours are 2 in 1's) for four or five hours is a pain on the neck/shoulder and elbow. So I always park close to where I need to be and go back sit in the car for 10 mins every hour or so
    • worried123
    • By worried123 17th Jul 17, 11:29 PM
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    worried123
    Thank you - it really isnt relevant to code every address called at - and this was my gripe to start with - (i feel from the description of the rucksack that you possibly work for a company whose initials are i.m........i do a tiny bit of work for them as well.....addresses are on paper ...and you dont have to record...Our addresses are on the machine

    Yes i know the feeling - in the evening and nobody asking you in and thinking you will pass out if it gets any colder......pitch black - all that stuff and they want us to code at every door as well

    sorry - as you can tell i am stressed and upset at them wanting us to code in at every door...scrolling to find the address as they arent in proper sequence - when you have coded something or ended an interview it opens up into a different survey.....so you have to close all of that and open up the relevant survey again....

    ..trouble is we dont really have a voice......
    Last edited by worried123; 18-07-2017 at 2:01 PM.
    • worried123
    • By worried123 17th Jul 17, 11:42 PM
    • 293 Posts
    • 100 Thanks
    worried123
    I'm almost certain that in this day and age, it would be eminently possible to use something smaller ... or lighter. However I can well imagine that an employer wouldn't necessarily want the cost of upgrading all the tech all at once!
    Originally posted by Savvy_Sue
    Hi Sue - thank you.
    I think there is one company that uses a very small machine....but we are a huge research company and so is the one that petethespider works for - we have similar sized machines - they are two in one as pete said and the keyborad detaches from the screen to make it as light as possible...but i do recall that before we got our most recent machines a couple of years ago the chaps in IT said something along the lines of it not being possible to have machines any smaller or lighter as it was to do with data safety.......i honestly think they couldn't be smaller - because of the type of work we do...we have to show people video clips etc and it wouldn't even be possible to put onto anything smaller the amount we have to show to respondents.......i know nothing about technology but i do feel that we couldn't possibly have smaller machines.......sadly. Also we have had several upgrades over the last few years...I know of male interviews...young, huge strapping guys with neck and shoulder problems from holding the machine the doorstep.......
    • martinsurrey
    • By martinsurrey 18th Jul 17, 8:24 AM
    • 3,130 Posts
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    martinsurrey
    However, i never said that i `think` i work for them. my employment status was never an issue - i `do` work for them....i am glad that i dont work for `sangie` thats for sure. i would like to think that i did understand forces reply - i have just looked at other threads - unfair dismissal as one and think i got off lightly with sangie....good grief!!! who is she?
    Originally posted by worried123
    I think you'll find your employment status IS an issue.

    Sounds like you are a worker, after each assignment ends you dont work for them anymore.

    If you kick up a fuss, they can just stop giving you work.
    • Petethespider
    • By Petethespider 18th Jul 17, 10:31 AM
    • 90 Posts
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    Petethespider
    I think you'll find your employment status IS an issue.

    Sounds like you are a worker, after each assignment ends you dont work for them anymore.

    If you kick up a fuss, they can just stop giving you work.
    Originally posted by martinsurrey
    And there lies the crux, you are a worker and as said, they don't have to give work

    Also depends on who your area co ordinator is as to what work you do get given. When I started I was given the extremely rural areas where there was no chance of 18 interviews so I was working for less then nmw so I stopped accepting work till the area manager got involved and started sharing the work out evenly. They can't keep interviewers The six I trained with only I went on to do more then the first job

    It's not good money anymore. It's only that I do high mileage and hours travelling that I even break even now
    • Guest101
    • By Guest101 18th Jul 17, 10:48 AM
    • 15,128 Posts
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    Guest101
    This is a classic example of the OP not getting a nice, flowery response with exactly what he or she wanted to hear, so throwing a strop.


    I don't understand, why ask for advice and then ignore the advice given
    • worried123
    • By worried123 18th Jul 17, 10:57 AM
    • 293 Posts
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    worried123
    I have accepted advice from somebody on here...so that isnt ignored is it......somebody has given practical constructive advice......the issue seems to have turned into my employment status and that is what it is and i cannot alter that.
    • Guest101
    • By Guest101 18th Jul 17, 11:02 AM
    • 15,128 Posts
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    Guest101
    I have accepted advice from somebody on here...so that isnt ignored is it......somebody has given practical constructive advice......the issue seems to have turned into my employment status and that is what it is and i cannot alter that.
    Originally posted by worried123


    It's changed to that because your employment status is in question, which will affect the advice you should follow.


    For example - if you could be let go for complaining, wouldn't you rather know??
    • sangie595
    • By sangie595 18th Jul 17, 12:22 PM
    • 3,842 Posts
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    sangie595
    It's changed to that because your employment status is in question, which will affect the advice you should follow.


    For example - if you could be let go for complaining, wouldn't you rather know??
    Originally posted by Guest101
    Clearly not. I am fed up to the back teeth of people who hurl insults at people because the don't like the advice. A board on which your are only told what you want to hear is pointless. But do be careful because if you tell people that they can be sacked they'll accuse you of being an employer and direct personal abuse at you. Much better to let people just get sacked without any warning.
    Last edited by sangie595; 18-07-2017 at 1:08 PM.
    • Undervalued
    • By Undervalued 18th Jul 17, 12:59 PM
    • 3,159 Posts
    • 2,879 Thanks
    Undervalued
    I have accepted advice from somebody on here...so that isnt ignored is it......somebody has given practical constructive advice......the issue seems to have turned into my employment status and that is what it is and i cannot alter that.
    Originally posted by worried123
    Your employment status is crucial to this whole discussion.

    Now if may be that you are correct but a very significant number of people do not understand the difference between an employee and a worker.

    The person you are complaining about has vast experience of employment matters. You may not like their style but that does not necessarily mean they are wrong.

    Equally, somebody saying what you want to hear isn't necessarily right!
    Last edited by Undervalued; 18-07-2017 at 1:18 PM.
    • Guest101
    • By Guest101 18th Jul 17, 1:03 PM
    • 15,128 Posts
    • 14,761 Thanks
    Guest101
    Clearly not. I am fed up to the back teeth of people who hurl insults at people because the don't like the advice. A board on which your are only told what you want to hear is pointless. But do be careful because if you tell people that they can be sacked they'll accuse you of being an employer and direct personal advise at you. Much better to let people just get sacked without any warning.
    Originally posted by sangie595
    Indeed, I've posted here a few times and received excellent advice.


    Sometime I think people expect to get a bow and cherry on top; free and accurate advice which could save hundreds or thousands of pounds and people complain....
    • sangie595
    • By sangie595 18th Jul 17, 1:15 PM
    • 3,842 Posts
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    sangie595
    Indeed, I've posted here a few times and received excellent advice.


    Sometime I think people expect to get a bow and cherry on top; free and accurate advice which could save hundreds or thousands of pounds and people complain....
    Originally posted by Guest101
    Yes. It's perhaps regrettable that I don't have the time to write 17 paragraphs of sympathetic drivel to dress up the bad news that people don't have the rights they insist that they have. But I'm very busy working for the people who have paid for their advice. As observed by ForceAwakens. It was immediately obvious that regardless of the OPs assertion to the contrary, the more they disclosed about their employment, the more obvious it became that they are a worker, and the agreement they sign is not a contract of employment (regardless of what it may say on the top).
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