Friday marks the end of an era, albeit a short era.
Since returning to work after having my second daughter, any job security I had ever had was pulled out from underneath my feet when we relocated to Western Australia and I left my lovely secure and safe job with the South Australian government. I did manage to find employment within the federal government quite quickly however security did not come with that employment, not even close.
I started out as a temp on a 6 week contract with a recruitment agency. At the completion of that contract and I mean basically the last day, I was offered a further 2 month contract within the organisation, I applied for permanent positions within the company but didn't get them, however feedback received was that I was highly suitable and would be merit listed for any future vacancies, for which there have been none, as soon after budget cuts saw the end to any further recruitment. I was however offered a further 6 months but advised there would be no further extensions due to the aforementioned. So I plan for my looming unemployment, which I can tell you is, scary as shit with two young children and mountains of bills to pay. My office at the time had no budget to keep me but a couple weeks short of my contract completing offered me a further 3 months with a different office, however a lot further from home. As far as I was concerned a job is a job, I was going to travel as long as it meant a pay packet would continue to be paid to me.
It is extremely frustrating working as a non ongoing staff member, you never know what the future holds, whether you will have work in three months time. Your performance in the end has no bearing on whether your contract is extended, it purely comes down to whether there is money to keep you, which just bites. Even worse is the tendency to leave the decision of whether contracts are extended or not to the very last minute, so you never know if you are Arthur or Martha.
So when I saw permanent positions advertised within this organisation but within the call centre come up again, I did not ignore them this time but hit send on the application, they had advertised twice previously but I was keen to remain within the customer contact areas. I figured this time though that even if I came out with a non-ongoing contract again, it would at least be for 12 months, and not this silly three month cycle I seem to have been stuck on.
So off my resume went, couldn't believe it, all they wanted was my resume and this was a government job, no selection critieria, thank you Lord!!! Got a call from the recruitment agency and had a quick phone interview, passed that with flying colours and moved onto the next stage. The Workshop!!! Cognitive testing, role play, typing test, group exercise, maths test, interview, everything was thrown at me, I did have a slight advantage with the role play exercise due to actually working with the information they were wanting to know, so required nil research to perform the task so had a seven minute exercise done and dusted within 30 seconds, I rock!!!
Medical was next cab off the rank, well once I found the bloom'in place. Recruitment agency was given the wrong address, but after a quick phonecall to the agency and my trusty Navman, I was back on my way. Which I can tell you was a lovely morning, great scales, if they fitted I would have seriously packed those things up into my bag and a Doctor who believed me to be extremely flexible, not that I did anything out of the ordinary, I may have touched my toes, that might be it, what that has to do with answering phone calls is beyond me.
Last stepping stone was the formal interview, which when booked (even though I caused a bit of trouble with that one, hey if they are going to promise a Saturday interview to me I'm going to cause a bit of a ruckus when they have been all booked) was 5pm on Saturday afternoon, I was told it would take approximately 15-20 minutes and was reasonably informal. I rock up 15 minutes early which is quite a normal thing for me to do. The place is locked up, you should have seem me enter freak out mode, I checked all door entries, the only buzzer I could find was situated between the locked glass doors in front of me and the next set of glass doors. I was seriously stressing, so when I saw the woman who was to interview walk out of the office to get me at 5pm, I must have let go of the biggest sigh of relief in the world, heart attack material I tell you. My twenty minute interview went for about an hour, we just talked for ages as they tried to freak me out about call centre life to gauge my reaction. My managers were all quite posiitive about that and said it was likely a good sign.
So fast forward to last week and whilst visiting my mum in South Hedland, I have a missed call on my mobile. Check my message bank and it is the recruitment agency advising me that I have successfully obtained a permanent position, I don't think you could have wiped the smile off my face, no more contracts, yeeeeeeeeeeeeeehaaaaaaaaaaaaa.
This leads me to tomorrow, Friday, my last day ever as a non going staff member, the last day of my contract, no more of not knowing what I will be doing in 6 months time, I have a job, permanent full time, and about bloody time, too many more contracts and I'm sure to have gone crazy. So in office tradition I have picked up some yummy goodies for morning tea and look forward to saying goodbue to my non going days and moving forward into my new position on Monday, even with the extra travel, chugga chugga toot toot, which will very likely bring with it a whole new set of issues.