A good idea… but… October 11, 2012Posted by WorldbyStorm in Economy.
Here’s one of those ideas which on some levels makes sense, and yet on others, perhaps not so much. The exchequer is on the point of stopping sending pay slips to retirees from the civil service, some 24,000 of them – for a saving of €200,000. It’s not a bad idea in principle:
Already many in the civil and public service will are issued electronic pay slips, some 33,000 according to the Sunday Business Post, and with about 290,000 in total employed in the area the scope for fairly significant savings are great.
And yet, and yet.
…it is understood that objections have been raised by the Departments of Justice and Education to shifting to electronic payments on the grounds that some gardaí and teachers do not have access to computers.
This is a fair point too. And not just some gardai and teachers, but also general staff and so on whose access to computers would be limited or non-existent. Indeed it’s sometimes difficult to remember that the proliferation of computers societally is more limited than might be expected and within organisations the view from the top may be entirely misleading as regards access to such technologies on the part of many workers within the work context. Distance and detachment tend to characterise hierarchies.
And it raises issues such as the duty of employers to staff. I can access my payroll details on an intranet in work – and IIRC for those who can’t the paper option remains, but I can’t outside of work for fairly obvious security reasons.
If I had limited or no access to a computer then I would be in serious trouble if I needed some information in an hurry (and of course while some of us do use internet banking many don’t). I think an employer has a duty to keep a worker informed about their financial position, but not to generate a situation where they are uninformed.
Again, it’s not that I think the idea is a bad one, quite the opposite, and it’s clearly not impossible to find means of overcoming these issues, but it’s like all these sort of ‘reforms’. Stating that they can be done is easy. Actually implementing them can be more difficult.