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Old 10-22-2004, 11:39 AM   #1
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OMGHi2U Bizare Friday Story: Temp agencies suck, people get fired, sucks to be them

Here is the story as best I can describe it. Names will be changed to protect the innocent and guilty. WTLW go to hell because this happened at my office this morning.

"We" (as in, the company I work for) were looking for a new receptionist for the office. About 8 months ago, we promoted the former receptionist to a new position and went to ABC Temp Agency to find a new one on a "try before you buy" sorta thing. The temp knew she would only be a temp for the first 3 months. At any point during the 3 months, the company was at its descetion to fire him/her at any point if they felt it wasn't working out. If after the 3 month period, the company decided they wanted to hire him/her, they could choose to do so, or just renew the temporary position. Basically, the company had all the power, as that's the sucky life of temporary positions.

Well, they found a decent gal who did a great job. They were going to hire her, but at the last minute, she decided she wanted to go back to school full time, a few states away. So we wished her well and got another temp under the same circumstances. We'll call her Mary.

So Mary has been here for 2 months, didn't really "gel" with our tiny office, and was sort of "cold" and not exactly that friendly, albeit a nice enough person. Management et al decided they didn't want her on board any more, so they called the temp agency, interviewed other people, and found a NEW person to replace Mary. Therefore, the temp agency was to call Mary last night and inform her NOT to come into work on Friday morning because she was fired, and that she should come back to the temp agency when she could so they could try and find her another job.

So this morning, my two coworkers, Jill and Bill, were walking into the building and see Mary waiting by the elevator. She seemed "okay" and while Bill didn't know a thing about this, Jill was practically the one responsible for our "HR" related activities- Jill was clueless and utterly speechless as to why Mary was now standing in the elevator, dressed for work. Jill was just about to say something when Mary loses it and starts absolutely BAWLING in the elevator, apologizing, saying she wasn't sure what she did wrong, etc...

Jill, not sure what to do, basically made out that all Mary was doing was coming back to get a few things out of her desk and would promptly leave. Jill tried to console her, Mary grabbed her things like she said, and promptly left the building, still very upset.

Now the fun part.

The phone rings: it's ABC Temp Agency calling to explain *** just happened to a very confused Jill. You see, ABC Temp Agency DID call Mary last night at home after work, just like they said the would. They told her, "Sorry - but things aren't working out with your employer and they've choosen to fire you. Come into the Temp Agency sometime in the next week and we'll try and help you find another job- sorry it didn't work out."

Except THEY CALLED THE WRONG FRIGGIN MARY!!!! Now I should explain that Mary's REAL name is NOT Mary, but a much more "unique" name that you don't hear very often (old name). So some dumbass at the temp agency figured they'd call the "only" Mary they knew of without CHECKING THE LAST NAME.

So fast forward to this morning- Now we have "our" Mary getting up to go to work as normal. The "other" Mary is probably depressed and confused as all hell that she got fired. The "other" Mary's employer calls her cell phone at 7:30am asking where the hell she is and why she's not at work. She explains, "What the f do you mean? You fired me yesterday that's why I'm not at work..." Well, at this point, the other company explains to the "other" Mary that they DIDN'T fire her, and that they REALLY like her and that they are planning to hire her full time. They called ABC Temp Agency and asked them "Who the hell called and fired our Mary last night?!"

The proverbial excrement makes contact with the proverbial wind-making device.

It's now 8:15am in the morning. "Our" Mary is on her way to the office to report at 8:30am like she does every day. She receives a frantic phone call on her cell phone that basically says, "Mary - sorry to tell you this, but YOU'VE been fired! I meant to tell you last night, but we told the wrong Mary. YOU ARE FIRED, DO NOT REPORT TO WORK." At this point, she is approximately 10 feet from the building, and the rest is history.

So not only did ABC Temp Agency NOT call our "Mary" to tell her NOT to report to work, they called ANOTHER Mary and FIRED HER instead! Thus made for a wonderful Friday morning story for you all to enjoy.

CN: We had a temp receptionist "Mary" who was supposed to get fired last night by the temp agency. Said receptionist shows up to work, starts crying, gets things, and leaves. My company gets phone call from temp agency explaining that last night they called *A* Mary, fired her, and told her not to report to work Friday morning... EXCEPT THEY CALLED THE WRONG MARY! Thus, the "wrong" Mary, depressed, sleeps in, receives phone call from HER employer asking her where the hell she is. She explains, "You fired me last night and told me not to show up to work" They reply, "No we didn't - come to work, we'll call the temp agency and see what's up."

Temp agency responds, "Oh crap - we fired the wrong person, and now YOUR person is on her way to the office without a clue!" They call "our" Mary, fire her as she's 10 feet from our building. She is totally blown away, comes up to get things from her desk since she's here anyway, and loses it, starts crying, etc.

Ultra CN: Temp at my office who was supposed to get fired last night wasn't called, shows up to work because Temp Agency fired the wrong person with the same (rather unique) first name at another company.
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Old 10-22-2004, 11:47 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by CirrusWRX
Ultra CN: Temp at my office who was supposed to get fired last night wasn't called, shows up to work because Temp Agency fired the wrong person with the same (rather unique) first name at another company.
MegaUltra Xtreme CN: CirrusWRX's company employs the worst temp agency on the planet.
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Old 10-22-2004, 11:48 AM   #3
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Well with a generic name like Mary they should have checked the last name!

Funny stuff.
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Old 10-22-2004, 11:49 AM   #4
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Womens super mega ultra ver7 CN: People is stupid.
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Old 10-22-2004, 11:53 AM   #5
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^ correct i can't believe i rad the entire thing!
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Old 10-22-2004, 11:56 AM   #6
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Time to find a new temp agency. And a new Mary. Maybe you could recruit the other one.
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Old 10-22-2004, 12:07 PM   #7
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I worked for ABC Temp agency back in the day!

Really, it was called ABC Temp agency.
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Old 10-22-2004, 12:29 PM   #8
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Heh....temp agencies do suck. My wife was working through a couple different temp agencies for awhile. Some places had no clue who they had working for them or where they were assigned. It was total disorganization. It's amazing these places can stay in business, but if they're all that way (which it seems they are), then I guess that's how it works.
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Old 10-22-2004, 12:38 PM   #9
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What the hell kind of company calls someone Thursday night to fire them as of Friday?!

Unless there was some rason she needed to be gone NOW (espionage/cirminal conduct) that's really ****ty/borderline inappropriate behavior for a company.

Was it too hard to just have her come in on Fri, explain the situation like real people and have that be her last day?

Guess that's why companies go through temp agencies though, so they don't have to not treat you like crap.
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Old 10-22-2004, 12:39 PM   #10
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Are you new?
The temp agency didn't call anyone. When your HR person called to chop on them they made up a story that made them seem like they reied to do something.
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Old 10-22-2004, 01:27 PM   #11
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Agreed on a lot of good points.

The companies reason for going through *a* temp agency is because, to hire for this kind of position, (let's be honest, it's not that glamorous- answer phones, make copies, make coffee, arrange travel plans, etc.) they want people to come in on a "temporary" basis. We're small - only 15 people, so if we get somebody in here who ROYALLY sucks or doesn't show up to work on time, smells bad, is totally incompetent, we have absolutely NO obligation to keep them.

Likewise, we don't need to BS them with a "Oh - it's great having you on board here... but you stink - go away." Instead, we "hire" them through the temp agency and the temp agency tells them (as do we): you are going to be under scrutiny. You might work at this place for 1 week or 10 years. If you're good and they like you, it'll be 10 years. If you don't show up to work on time and do a lousy job, you'll be gone in a week." It's also quite a lot of work to go and set somebody up at the company as a full time employee. Benefits are decent here and require a lot of work. To set up all the health insurance, tax stuff, retirement plan, costs a lot of money and time and effort, only to find out the person sucks or stops showing up in two weeks. This way, we can try before we buy and I personally think it's more like a win win for both parties- if the person coming HERE thinks this place sucks and this job isn't going to be a match for him/her, they can leave on their own free will.

Obvioulsy, the agency made a HUGE error and for that, rumor I heard is that the next person coming in is NOT going to be from them, but I'm just an IT dork so I'm not involved in this stuff much.

Bottom line: temp work = t3h suck for all parties involved, but, like with our last person, she was fantastic (just decided to go back to school) and we got her through the same agency. So it's total hit or miss.

Hopefully the next one will be a hit...
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Old 10-22-2004, 01:39 PM   #12
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I know the answer. Mary's sister is the shortest one with the blonde hair.
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