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What happened to my quiet time?

Posted in Life, Work with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 8, 2014 by urbannight

clock

I can’t think in the mornings. To start out with, I am not a morning person. It is odd because since the time change Sunday, I’ve been waking up at 4:30, what would have been 5:30, which is earlier than I normally got up anyway.

The upside is that I can usually get to work early for some morning OT. The down side is that I start to drag long before lunch hour.

When we first moved to this new building, those of us who started at 7:30 had a very quiet office to work in. It was a peaceful start to get a jump on a productive day. Now it is a loud, noisy, bustling place at 7:30 am. It is annoying, distracting, and makes it impossible to get a good jumpstart on the day.

It doesn’t help that all the new people ever hired to replace anyone or to build up the numbers in the unit to deal with increasing business have all wanted to start at 7:30. So 8:00 people left and were replaced with 7:30 people. This doesn’t help the afternoon when we need coverage for the last half hour of the day. The newest hire wasn’t given a choice.

This is why I try to get to work extra early, so I can get my quiet time back. I need that peace to get my brain in gear before the distractions start, if I don’t then the distractions keep me from working as I want to. I find myself staring at the monitors trying to find that place of stillness and peace and balance from whence all effectiveness flows.

The unit next to us now is a recovery unit who are on the phones nearly as often as my unit. The problem is that most of them get to work even earlier than us. Some mornings they are working in silence and other mornings they are loud and boisterous. This means that even if I get to work early I can’t find my peaceful, quiet, time that gives me that edge the remainder of the day.

It doesn’t help that we are now using a TPA that is so bad that half of our complaint calls are all about them and 100% of the calls about the TPA are complaint calls. It is so stressful anymore that I dread opening a file and seeing the name that indicates the file went to the TPA. It’s enough that I’m contemplating job hunting and I really don’t want to do that. I’m finally making a decent wage and I don’t want to have to start over again at a starting wage.

If only I had my peace and quiet in the mornings once again and maybe I would have my equilibrium in place before the day started. But maybe even that would no longer help. I don’t rightly know anymore. I just have to take it one day at a time.

Hidden Goodness in Canceled Plans:

Posted in Entertainment, Gaming, Health, Life, Work with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 29, 2012 by urbannight

This has NOTHING to do with the post. It is just a great fantasy, day dream, fantasy concept floating around Facebook. I may turn it into a stitch pattern.

What today looked like:
1. Get up 1.5 hours early to go to work early.
2. Forget to take all medicine before leaving.
3. Lose phone so you can’t call roommate and ask him to bring them to work.
4. Dental appointment and get the first half of a root canal done.
5. Find the missing phone.
6. Be hungry but have no desire to eat once the dentist stuff wears off.
7. Spend rest of the work day in pain w/ headache.
8. Game night gets canceled.
This is hidden goodness disguised as much sadness. It means I could get home, take blood pressure meds, take pain meds, and I can go to bed early so I can have a better day tomorrow.

Be Careful What You Ask For.

Posted in Life, Work with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 11, 2012 by urbannight

How often do you feel this way? I do, often.

I’ve been wanting a project at work. There is plenty of work to do, but there is no mental challenge or stimulation.  For a while, that was great.  Several years ago I was severely burnt out from a job where the work conditions changed dramatically over several years.  It went from a job I absolutely loved to one I dreaded so much that I developed eye twitches and my hands would numb up and fingers fold up and I had trouble moving them.  Just the mention of my boss’s name was enough to cause my left eye to go entirely spastic. 

Do a job with no extra responsibility was great for a while.  But now I feel the need for more of a challenge but I’m not ready to leave for a new job.  This summer I said I would like a project and my supervisor took it to the office manager and they were going to figure something out. But things happen and the office manager forgot about it and the supervisor had to much on her plate with two people in the unit retiring and one quitting and then training three new people.  Not to mention, at the same time, her father’s health was deteriorating, he was put in a home, he was getting worse, and then the expected happened and he passed away. 

Life happens.  And major life events do affect what it occurring at work despite what employers would want to happen.  Its natural.  It is part of being alive and human.  To think otherwise in unrealistic.

So she sat down and had a meeting with each of us about what we are doing, how we are feeling about it, and what more we would like out of our jobs.  Again, I asked for some type of project to keep me more focused and engaged with work. 

After she spoke with the office manager, she gave me a project that had been briefly discussed in the past.  I actually had the impression someone already did it when I saw the fantastic binder the second new person got.  It turns out that manual was only for the phone part of the job.  The compiling part still needs to be done.  I was give 3 – 4 weeks to get the first draft of it done.  I get to write the compiling training manual. 

We have two compiling units.  Those of us who do the phones and compile the phoned in losses and the department that handles paper mail, faxes, and emails and compiles those losses.  They get more losses but we take longer due to phone interruptions.  Yet we find that we have the time to go in and help a little with the paper losses.  There was a meeting because the compilers for that other unit are not getting them done fast enough from the moment we receive them to getting them into the review flow to be assigned an examiner.

The customer service/phone unit I am in has 6 people right now, including the supervisor.  I was the only fully compiler trained on the one side of the company and SZ was the only fully trained compiler on the other side of the company.  But we never got fully trained on each others systems.  But we seem to get more turned in on my side than her side.  This means her side is usually caught up.  Two of the other people have been with the company a long time and they were only trained on the very basics of compiling as back ups.  Then we have two new persons.  One of whom has been fully trained on the phones and preliminary set up after a new loss call.  She is just getting started on compiling today. 

This means, most of the unit is only half trained.  We are generally so busy that training on more complicated claims is ad hoc.  This also because the supervisor isn’t completely trained on them.  So if they get something they don’t understand they often don’t have time for someone to walk them through it.  It ends up sitting there until I get to it.  What I don’t understand is why the two compilers in the other unit, both of whom were fully trained and have been with the company at least twice as long as myself in one case and over three times as long in the other case and who are both much faster than I am, keep skipping ones that seem ‘difficult’.  Many of the ones they are skipping are ones I find very easy.  I’m just slower at them. 

The result is they are not getting done fast enough because my priority is to get the ones done from my unit first.  SO the VP of claims decided to make those other claims our third priority.  That used to be helping out in the other clerical workflows to try to keep them caught up.  Because I used to be a backup for importing the new claims emailed in, I’m going to be doing that again.  Which is no problem.  It is easy. 

But now the VP of claims, after hearing about the project I was just assigned at the end of day yesterday, wants me to step it up and get certain portions of it done in a week to ten days.  Turning in individual sections as I finish them.  I dont’ have to do the entire thing.  Just the types of claims that the new people are finding too confusing and therefore skipping.  Part of the set up we do is initial determination of what units get set up on a claim and what type of coverage the units will be under.  This is surprisingly subjective at times.  There are cases in which certain variables can totally change things.  This is where some people are getting confused and start skipping things.

While I find some of them very easy, the minute details made the instructions very long.  The 2 hours a week over-time we had for a couple of months ran out.  But he has authorized me to have 2 hours OT each week to specifically work on this so I can get parts to him quickly and he can run through them with the examiners and figure out what needs to be tweaked.  On top of that, because I’ll be explaing coverage determination in it, once the VP accepts and authorized the final copy, it will be set in stone.  This is to help stop the nit-picking and arguing between examiners who disagree with each other on how coverages should be set up.  That is going to be the most challenging part of this project. 

So I got what I wanted and it turned into something they now want on the rush and at a high priority.  Be careful of what you ask for, you might get and get it in spades.

At least I won’t be bored. But it will be a much shorter term project now.  So what will I do after it is finished?

One of THOSE Days

Posted in Work with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 26, 2012 by urbannight

I cannot read your mind, so I shall eat it instead…..
(I think I can get a lot of mileage out of this one image)

Why do people think I read minds?  I can’t.  It would be nice thought.  It would save me a lot of time.  

Names, Date, Places, are deliberately avoided to protect the sane, insane, and differently sane.

First there was the lady who called to report a loss from a week ago.  A week isn’t bad.  Really, it isn’t.  Not compared to some.  But she is all worried and said she was on vacation at the time. 

She is giving me info from a police report.  No problem.  I ask her to give me a description of what happened. 

Her: What do you mean?

Me: How did the Accident happen? 

Her: How should I know, I wasn’t there!

Me: But you have a police report that you have been reading from.

Her:   Do you want me to fax it to you?

Me: I just need you to read me the accident description from the police report.

Her:  Why are you coming at me with all this attitude?  What do you want me to do?

Me: You have a police report and you tell me you don’t know what happened.  It’s on the police report, all I need you to do is read me that information. 

And she finally does, calms down, and we finish the loss reasonably quickly.  Only at the end, she tells me she took photos of the other vehicle.  All I can wonder is how that happened if she was on vacation?

Then I get an email and two in-house phone calls to make changes on three claims all at the same time.  I can only answer one line at a time, thank you.  Two of the three were no problem.  Aside from the fact that as I’m trying to get to it, the other two calls come in, plus two external calls, and then another internal call asking why it wasn’t done yet.  We  found out more info and were able to change suspense claims to proper policies and get them set up accurately.  Finally, I got it out of my hair and off my desktop.

The third was an issue.  They changed the Date of Loss and now if fell inside the policy period.  But they never sent me a request to put the loss claim on the correct policy, so it was committed to the main frame as a suspense.  That just means a dummy policy to allow us to set up something if it fell before or after a policy period or if we couldn’t find any policy at all. 

The examiner wanted to know why it wasn’t changed to go on the correct policy.  For the simple reason no on informed me of the change of date and there was an active policy for the new date.  If I am not told, I cannot go in to make the change.  I don’t read minds. 

I would like to read minds.  I really would.  Then I might know who was in or not, who was on their phones or not, and I could stop wasting time an energy on people who don’t like me.  But I can’t.  Maybe I could saute them up in a little bit of butter.  I do like to cook. Anyway….

I’ve had another person in the unit tell me that she apparently can’t do anything right today and a third person is having some odd calls too.  Like one on man who told her if he could find the driver he would strangle and kill him, he just wants his 50$ deposit to the rental place back. 

If you are going to risk a murder wrap, please have it be more meaningful than over 50$.

I still have not taken my blood pressure meds today.  I really need to.  I’m starting to feel it rise.

I don’t think I want to know what the rest of today is going to bring.

Mysteries of a Woman’s Purse Revealed.

Posted in Life, Writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 14, 2012 by urbannight

Here I shall unveil and demystify a woman’s purse. Everything is some sort of necessity or another.

Purse and Wallet

 

 

The small wallet helps to show how small the purse really is. In the wallet are the standard wallet things as well as my cell phone. My mother got the wallet for me when she was in Hawaii. I’m so impressed. She found something with a Hawaiian theme in black and white. It there is a little grey and cream. But it is a little dingy right now and I should wash it.

Something to do.

 

Contents of ‘Something to Do’ although beeds are not shown.

I have a small stitching project for when I need something to do. I can sometimes fit a book into this purse, but not when I have all this stuff in it. Maybe I should clean it out sometime?????
The little project is actually very stuffed itself. Taking up most of the space is the small, multi-folded envelope to keep all the floss colors seperate and in order.

 

 

Pens, Pens, Pens, more Pens

 I also seem to have accumulated a rather large collection of pens in black, blue and red.  I have one mechanical pencil for my gaming night (I hate pencils, I won’t even use them for word puzzles, but it is an absolute must for pen and paper RPG’s. Even I can’t get around it then) and one highlighter for marking completed stitches.  I’m not as good at remembering where aI left off as when I was younger.  I had a huge project and HAD to use a highlighter to keep track.  But I discovered that once you start using one you can’t stop.  You can’t really go back to keeping your place by memory.  I sometimes have my checkbook.  Since I destroy the covers, I don’t use them.

Soup and Beverage, Cough Drops and Pain Killers

 I also have a couple packet of instant soup, a flavor packet to add to water, a fist full of cough drops, (I figured just a few would do for the photo) and several packets of various types of pain killers.  I figured one would do.  The soup is yummy Fish Broth soup that is more tea like than soup like.  Wonderful on cold mornings after the drive in to work.  And sometimes you just get sick of flavorless water and you need something with taste.

How I get in to Work

Nail Polish

Of course, I have to make sure I can get into work once I actually get there.

 

I’m not too sure how I ended up sith so many bottles of nail polish in my purse.  I really need to take most of those out.  I would hate to catch my purse in a door and crack one of those glass vials.

Misc Things….

And last but not least I have an assortment of miscelaneous items.  A Tide pen for accidental dribbles.  An inhailer, D&D dice so I can always find them.  A small tin that holds 6 tea bags.  A tiny flashlight. Two lip balms since I’m always losing them.  The green one is a green tea balm and much better than chapstick brand.  The white spool is actually a sparkly pearl blending fillment.  And the plug to change my USB camera cord into a wall charger.  It will not charge from the computer.  I had a tooth brush and tooth paste in there too but they actually belong in my work desk so I took them out and put them back in the drawer.

The Monday Blahs

Posted in Art, Books, Education, Gaming, Life, Movies and Theatre, Tea, Uncategorized, Work, Writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 19, 2012 by urbannight

I’m feeling particularly Blahish today.  I was up too late playing SW’TOR.  I hoped to get my Sith Inquisitor up to lvl 16 and on her ship.  Her first companion would be a freaky looking, non-romanceble monster.  But that is my Dark Path character and he is a good guide for convo options that lead farther down the dark path.  I plan to play a Light Path Sith and a Dark Path Jedi as well to see what happens. 

Shadowrun is on hiatus for 6 weeks.  The GM’s creative writing course is ‘kicking him in the ass’ and he feels he can’t do both right now.  He is up to still getting together on Mondays, just so long as it isn’t a game he has to run and put time, effort, and energy into.  I know I shouldn’t end a sentence that way, but my brain just isn’t up to rewriting the sentence.  I think it goes back to staying up way to late on a Sunday night. 

But there will be NO Monday meeting tonight.  I do have a dinner tonight with my stitching group.  Petrow’s.  Yummy food.  Reasonable prices.  Good conversation.  And I get to give a scarf away.  If I finish it at lunch.  I should.  There is only a small amount of yarn left and then I just have to stitch up the tails.

I also got a Tardis all drawn out.  I may stop at the fabric store and try to pick something out.  I think I’ll make it up into a throw pillow.  I’ve pretty much decided on two forms right now.  A bluework piece on black and a blackwork piece.  The advantage is that I can use the same basic outline.  I’ll do the easier one first.  I’m leaning towards doing it on black silk, black velvet, or black crushed velvet.  Not sure yet.  I’ll have to take a look at the fabric first.

The morning is passing in extreme tedium and I’m dying here.  I’ve planned, plotted, and toyed with all sorts of ideas.  I re-organized all the desk top icons.  I read an article last week on why John Carter tanked at the box office and am thinking about writing a blog discussing those points and explaining why it was actually a good movie and people really ought to go see it.  But then my brain reminds me that it won’t be properly awake for a while longer and that is too much work right now. 

I would be so much happier if the phone were ringing off the hook with new claim calls.  I love busy days.  Well, sometimes I hate them.  But I always love how fast they make the day pass.

I’m trying to work out my plans for Saturday.  I have a wedding shower to attend and an Austinian tea party to attend.  Thankfully, it is not on Sunday.  I have a stitching group that day.  It would have been too much to juggle.  I don’t have appropriate period dress, but that is okay.  If I have fun, I can always make something up.  The hostess is short and large chested as well and has patterns she figured out for dealing with that issue.  I mean Austinian as in a Jane Austin recreationist group.  Just in case people didn’t figure that one out.

I’ve known for years that I have too many hobbies.  I wish days were longer but people still only needed the same amount of sleep.  Then I might find time to do more of them.  Or keep them all caught up at the same time.  I suppose I better focus.  Maybe some serious caffeine will help.

Why Murphy Why?

Posted in Apartments, Life, Technology, Uncategorized, Work with tags , , , , , , , , on October 20, 2010 by urbannight

This is not a blog so much as it is a statement of fact in a questioning form.

Why is it that when you are running slightly late, the world suddenly conspires against you to make you more and more late as each occurance adds up?

The alarm that was set and on but did not go off.

The vacuum cleaner that decided not to suck and that was the last bag.

The wasted time searching for a phone to call work to let them know you are behind. The phone you never find before leaving.

The well-dressed lady in the cross-walk that suddenly stops in the middle and can’t decide if she is going to turn around and go back, continue on, or wander out into the middle of the intersection.

The intersection you cannot get through on your green light because all of the turning traffic from the crossroad is still blocking it.

Who is Murphy and can we take out a hit on him?