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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    northern Ohio
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    Thumbs up Question for owners

    Recently i had my "yearly review" wiith my current employer. This has been done over the phone the past five years and has turned into an "uncomfortable conversation" to say the least. Same story the last three years, " you are our most billable tech, no customer complaints, wish we had 10 more like you " BUT " you have kind of reached a plateau, the economy is flat right now, BUT we are giving you a 3% raise." Last year was 2% the year before was 7%. Last year my hospitalization went from 80% company/ 20% i pay to 50%/50%, the year before they stopped the 50% matching of 401k contributions. Our Christmas bonus was @ a weeks pay 5 years ago, it kept getting smaller untill it vanished this past Christmas. 25% to 35% of my work is for customers i"ve serviced since the 90s. I use my vacation durring the slower times (late winter early spring) of the year, have yet to use all my vacation/sick time for the year(it is paid if not used). My work van is an 03 but runs great, I know enough to know how to get help when i don't know enough. I do my job with my mouth shut, show up on-time, reasonably clean, and help out when i can. I average @ 46 hours a week per year, do on-call and back-up, and am greatfull to have a job. There are two other techs in this outfit with more time than i and most everybody who works here is decent. Of the 40 or so employees 25 will stay here for many years, they have cut the install crews in half and we all have to monitor sytems on-line since they got rid of the two IT positions. they still replace broken tools, with approval. I really don't envy the owner the headaches/pressure of running a company. Taxes, insurance, permits, licenses fees, work permits, taxes, bad new hires, workmans comp., taxes. yea i wrote taxes three times. I just don't see it getting better. Retirement on a tropical beach with a cold beer in my hand is not very likely. I'll probably die with my multi-meter in my hand, my nut driver in my bak pocket, while wearing my safety glasses and hard hat. As a business owner do you see it diferently? Am I missing something? Or is that just the way it is? And why so? And DAD, Thanks for letting me "VENT" I do feel a little better now.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
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    There are several reasons that could in play at your company. Has the business volume dropped off? Has company profits reduced due to increase in overhead? Is your company in the oil business and that revenue declined due to market area changing to gas. Basically is there less coming in but over head remains same? It may have nothing to do with your performance, Has the market area become more competetive? Is there less revenue coming in but over head has increased? Is revenue still good but over head sharply increased over time?
    Saddle Up!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
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    A business owner doesn't stay in business if he doesn't control costs closely. Cutting healthcare to 50-50, well he's probably competing against companies who don't even have a healthcare plan. No Christmas bonus, but you're averaging 46 hours a week? Most would jump at that.
    The owner also has to have a plan to plan for the future and keep his doors open. Is there another recession ahead? Yes but who knows if it hits next month or in a few years. Economic certainty is not certain. Nobody is raising their rates so that 3% he gave you likely came out of his pocket, as is the extra money he's paying for gas these days.
    If the owner is giving you a steady paycheck he should expect your 100% effort every day. You should pitch in whenever you can, do on calls when asked. You should also think of ways he can cut costs, and try to bring in a customer whenever you can. It does amaze me that guys will say the same things you have said and they think that entitles them to a raise. That is what you are paid to do in the first place.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
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    I disagree. The biggest issue the industry has is owners racing to the bottom, but not knowing the cost of doing business and charging appropriately. Almost everything has gone up in price over the time period, specifically consumer products. its called inflation. the rate isnt calculated on the entire economy, so it looks flat but isnt. in order to "hold on to what you have", prices need tto keep up, as do wages.
    the attitude of many owners who WANT to be the cheapest bidder has caused this business to lose buying power with the average wage. this isnt the techs fault.
    the local marketplace drives prices to a certain degree, but not overall. Once a year or more, manufacturers and suppliers raise prices. Lets say a man raises prices 7% which is common. that covers increased costs for rent, utilities, wages, taxes you name it. this also covers some overhead, and that dirty little word....profit. many small business owners fear doing this. sad.

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