Thursday, March 08, 2007

Government Bureaucracy

Twice in the last two and a half months I've had the pleasure of sitting through fact finding unemployment interviews with Iowa Workforce Development. What makes these two times different then most of the others I have been through is that the employees in question still works for me. Try wrapping your brain around that one...claiming unemployment from a business while still employed there. Once you've done the mental yogi, you'll have a greater understanding of how the government works than I do.

Each one of the employees in question works part time for me and either lost or quit their full time job. By default when an unemployment claim is filed the Unemployment Insurance Services Division contacts the last three known places of employment for the individual. The reason being that if the first business isn't found liable for the unemployment claim the next business in line gets the chance to bare that burden. I can't imagine this line of thinking makes much sense to anyone outside the public sector, but it's the system we have.

Each unemployment case was handled by different UI workers. The first one was absolutely by the book and sounded like he was reading everything straight of the page. The first thing we established was the person in question was still employed. Trying to break the ice, I joked how funny it would be for me to pay unemployment on someone I still employed. Apparently to government workers this isn't funny. He told me that in the event that first business on the unemployment claim wasn't found responsible for the claim is could fall to my business, which I told him I understood.

However, by this time I was annoyed. So I asked him why his department thinks my business should be held responsible for the failings of another business' employee/boss relations when that person still works for me? Not to mention their unemployment claim is twice what they make working for me! "Sir, if you're unhappy with my report you have 30 days to file an appeal..." Whatever, just do you're stupid interview. I haven't lost a claim yet, so just ask your questions.

The second fact finding interview was handled by a very nice lady and it took all of 6o seconds. "Hello, Mr. Jordan thank you for taking the time this morning to meet with me. It says here on the background check that the claimant is still employed for you, is this correct?" To which I replied "Yes, Ma'am." She then said something about being sorry for wasting my time and told me I would receive a copy of her findings in about a month, but assured me that I would not be liable for the unemployment claims.

I mean God forbid the first worker uses a little common sense. Ah, the joys of owning your own business.

No comments: