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Old 08-31-2008, 08:33 PM   #1
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Default personal cell phones at work (for work)

From reading some other posts, it seems a general perception (or fact) that the younger generation of electricians are on their cells a lot during work, with g/f, wife, or friends.

My discussion here is concerning a trend (at least in my local, with the contractor that I currently work for), of JW calling foreman, sub foreman, and other JW for job-related discussions.
So much that the sub-foreman will call me (a 1st yr. apprentice) and tell me to go somewhere and do something. One JW just leaves his cell in his truck, and says that at least one contractor he worked for forbid personal cell phones to even be on the jobsite.
I want my cell to have battery power when I call my wife at break or lunch, and especially because she is pregnant. I have started turning it off during work hours.

The same JW told me to call the sub foreman the other day. I just said my phone is off, and I'm not using it for work anymore anyway.
I want to get one of those hard-hat stickers with the cell phone with a line through it.
The other day I counted, and could recall at least 8 out of the 11 electricians on our jobsite who use their cells to trade calls with the foreman. One day in particular, the foreman called the sub, then the sub called a JW, the JW came to find me and told me what I had to go and do.

Seems like we are doing the contractor a favor by using our personal cells for work, at least saving the foremen walking, with no return. (Although it does help us if one JW goes to the trailer to get supplies and another remembers something else we need, he can call him and say "bring this or that back with you". But, I don't think it's really the point here.

One day the whole crew got docked a half hour pay for being gone at 3:15 on a Friday (except me because I was over at the trailer putting a shipment away).Will the contractor replace one of our phones, if we break it at work? What if I went over my minutes in a month?

If the sub foreman asks why he can't get me on my phone, I'm just going to tell him that I am not going to use it for work.

If it's a No-No to bring your own power tools to the site, where do personal cells for work fall?

Just wondering what the other opinions are on this subject.

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Old 08-31-2008, 08:43 PM   #2
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My phone, I pay the bill, I make the rules. If my boss wants to use a cell phone for work purposes, he can provide it, and foot the bill..... and he does.

If it wasn't for your wife, I would say leave it in the car.

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Old 08-31-2008, 09:23 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by JohnJ0906 View Post
My phone, I pay the bill, I make the rules. If my boss wants to use a cell phone for work purposes, he can provide it, and foot the bill..... and he does.

If it wasn't for your wife, I would say leave it in the car.
Couldn't have said it better myself. I agree 100%
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Old 08-31-2008, 09:25 PM   #4
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I was asked when I was hired on if I would use my personal cell phone for work and I would be reimbursed every month, Its not the full bill but it is a good amount of it that they cover. I agreed, since they did not require it. I always have the option to not bring it, but that just makes my life harder when I am trying to call my supervisor, or a supply house, or getting a phone call saying my mom was in the hospital.... My company treats me very well, so I have no problem using my own cell for work purposes.

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Old 08-31-2008, 10:03 PM   #5
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union rules in my local;

no personal cellphones on the jobs.

Not that it gets followed to the letter but they do not get used for company business. If the boss wants to contact me while at work via phone, he can tell me what phonebooth (they still have payphones somewhere, don't they?) to wait for his call or provide a cellphone. It is part of doing business and I am not in business. I work for his business.
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Old 08-31-2008, 11:29 PM   #6
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Like John stated, it's my phone and I pay the bill, I make the rules. It isn't on the tool list. I see too many guys using their personal phones for work use.
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Old 09-01-2008, 07:44 AM   #7
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I was asked when I was hired on if I would use my personal cell phone for work and I would be reimbursed every month, Its not the full bill but it is a good amount of it that they cover. I agreed, since they did not require it.
I will say this is a different case. If I were asked up front, and reimbursement offered, I might well agree.
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Old 09-01-2008, 09:24 AM   #8
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I furnish all my men and apprentices cells phones. But on occasion I call them on theirs due to the excellent service Nextel does not offer. Looking to change providers. They can use their Nextel for personal use, but many have Verizon for the aforementioned excellent Nextel coverage.

Quote:
I want my cell to have battery power when I call my wife at break or lunch, and especially because she is pregnant. I have started turning it off during work hours.
Not that your boss should expect you to use you phone for his purposes BUT

1. Your battery should easily last a whole day.
2. Why are you calling your wife twice a day. THAT IS THE ISSUE with the young guys.
3. You do not want your personal phone used LEAVE IT IN THE TRUCK.
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Old 09-01-2008, 09:28 AM   #9
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I'll call my wife as many times as I want if it is on break or lunch. Why is that a problem?
I usually only call on lunch anyway.
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Old 09-01-2008, 10:09 AM   #10
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Unless she is pregnant or has a medical issue, you're not buying a house or you just got married what could there possible be that can't wait till the end of the day.
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Old 09-01-2008, 10:49 AM   #11
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I like to talk to her and my 2 year old son as they eat lunch, while I eat mine. And like I said, it's at lunch, on my time. There's no personal calls going on during work hours. That's not what I was asking about.

I saw a JW be let go because he was on his phone constantly one morning, even the other JWs were getting pissed on the other end of a pull, waiting on him. They told him, "If your baby (kid) is sick, or there is an emergency, tell the foreman you need a 1/2 hour to take care of it (off the clock) or just tell him you have to go". He didn't, and just kept taking and making calls. Next day, he was gone.

And like you said brian john: I told my wife "If it is something that can wait until I get home, then don't call me at work, unless I am on break at 9:30 or at noon".

Am I hearing from your previous post: "Here's a company phone, you can use it for personal use, but not during work. Oh, and I expect you to use your personal phone for work also, because my provider sucks, but don't use your phone for personal use on the job.

It does seem like personal phones sure cause major problems, and it would be best if contractors had clear policies on them.

I would have to agree with you that leaving it in the truck is the best policy, until my wife gets really close, then I'm probably going to keep it on me.

On one hand, I would say that a worker can concentrate on his work if he has his phone on, knowing that if there is an issue, he will get the message sooner, rather than later if he is worried about a family issue, but on the other hand if his phone is ringing constantly, that is a huge distraction to him and the rest of the crew, and can hold up a entire crew.
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Old 09-01-2008, 11:44 AM   #12
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BP:

It is your time and your free to discuss what you like with who you like, but I hear my guys talking ALL the time not just break and lunch. My point would be keep it fairly private.

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Old 09-01-2008, 01:14 PM   #13
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I hear ya.

I know personal use of cells is a problem during work hours.
Just interested to hear the positions on personal cells for work purposes. Some guys here are getting irked as they might if some of us brought our personal cordless tools in to use at work.

Certainly after seeing the one JW be let go largely as a result of his personal calls, I remind my wife "Only in an emergency".

I just don't want to set a precedent that is bad practice, especially in the eyes of some of the JWs that I work with, by using my phone...so, I will just leave it in my vehicle and/or leave it off.

Thanks for the responses.
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Old 09-01-2008, 04:00 PM   #14
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IMO ocassional use between you and boss, ahhh that's OK make it a habit and they should be supplying you one.
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Old 09-01-2008, 04:20 PM   #15
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I personally keep my cell in my personal pickup. UNLESS My wife is having problems with her diabetes. Then I want to be able to check on her during break and lunch. And I also don't want to take the chance of breaking it.
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On a side note I locked my keys in my truck one day at the job. I was the last to leave and it was out in the middle of nowhere. You will never guess where my phone was safe and sound.
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Old 09-13-2008, 06:44 PM   #16
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Ok...I used my personal phone on company time. If i needed to call someone, I was going to call 'em...

NOW, I am the boss, My own company....if someone needs to make a call....make it....

All the guys who Piss and moan, bitch and carry on about phones,(either side of the fence) are generally just a real PAIN IN THE ASS!!
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Old 09-27-2008, 06:20 PM   #17
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Ok...I used my personal phone on company time. If i needed to call someone, I was going to call 'em...

NOW, I am the boss, My own company....if someone needs to make a call....make it....

All the guys who Piss and moan, bitch and carry on about phones,(either side of the fence) are generally just a real PAIN IN THE ASS!!
I cary both personal and work all the time... sat. sun. vacations where ever I may go. The company I work for is great I dont hesitate to take a call from my project manager or the shop super at midnight. One hand washes the other though if I have a personall call to make during the day I dont hesitate to make it. The guys that bitch are usually the ones that never say anything about leaving at 3:00 on friday but always have something to say about staying to 3:31 any other day
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Old 09-27-2008, 06:36 PM   #18
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seems like the train engineer involved in that california train wreck was text messaging seconds before the crash. he ran a "red light". got to be a lesson there somewhere.
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Old 09-27-2008, 08:49 PM   #19
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I rarely use my cell phone. My biggest peeve is the people who use them with no common sense. They use them whenever and wherever and talk loud enough for everyone else to hear. Have a little courtesy.
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Old 09-27-2008, 11:21 PM   #20
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What's next, laptop computers?? How about infra-red scanning devices? had a foreman one time that used his personal cell phone for work. His crew considered him a worm for doing this. Loss of respect, so how much now would the crew do for him? Answer, nothing. The halls position, no way. It is against the agreement to use personal cell phones for work. And the code of excellence says no cell phones on the job. Where does it all end? I guess when lay offs come, we'll keep the guys with the cell phones and the pipe racks on their trucks. This is no joke, I worked with an apprentice in Las Vegas that had his own scissor lift! He explained to me that he had gotten a good deal on the thing, so what the hell. Forget about cell phones, here is a guy that will bring his own scissor lift on the job, does it get any better than this. Worked with another guy in the bay area that had 3 tool boxes of tools. There was nothing this guy didn't have. Saw a guy out of San Mateo that had his own extension ladder. And I have seen a guy bring a laptop onto the job to use for the job. So lets say for the sake of argument that you're a contractor, you have a guy that has a truck with a pipe rack, an extension ladder plus a few step ladders, a trailer with a scissor lift on it, laptop computer, two cell phones and a nextel, a motorola base two-way radio, hole hawg, complete hydraulic knock out set to 2 inch, greenlee pipe bender and ridgid threader. The other guy has what's on the tool list. Who gets laid off first?

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