Friday, December 23, 2016

Season Updates

In the real world, I've been out of employment for five months. Part of a small layoff at my old job at a company I'd been at for nineteen years. 

I have recently found new employment in a contract position with Medline. Pay is great but no benefits. 

It's also a bit out of the way compared to my old job. Instead of fifteen minutes, it's roughly an hour there and another hour back. 

My initial work was Monday-Friday doing the regular training and learning bits. During this time I've had to create documentation because for many things, it was all hand delivered. Always a poor way to handle issues. 

This relying on subject matter experts though isn't a new thing. It was a common sight at the old job too. Only a handful of people knowing how to do a thing without it being documented.

With me on board, there are two other new hires. We've all been doing our share of recording things.

And it's not that current employees are unfriendly. No, they are relatively so. But they're not teachers. When they go to show you how something is done, it's zip zip zip. No screenshots, no written documentation, no waiting while you write things down because they are handling vital issues, so it makes thing difficult to ensure that you've got every step necessary down. 

This makes things a bit more challenging then they need to be.

There are some things documented. The documentation in those areas is very handy. Well written and generous use of screen shots. 

But sometimes it's wrong. And it's copy protected so we can't update it. So you wind up making a copy of it for your personal use and anytime the correct file does get changed, you're now out of synch. Minor things but telling things.

The job uses PL/SQL, and it's been a challenge to take my MS Access skills to this field. Fortunately, I've always studied SQL because there are some things in MS Access that you still need SQL to do. And I've always been interested in "big data" and databases in general. It's a good way to organize things.

So long story short, I've been busy with a new job.

I'm still reading comics, still reading books. Lately, those books have veered away from fiction and into non-fiction. Some interesting results there. Did see Rogue One and will definitely have to post about that soon.

Anyway, I hope the holidays are treating everyone well and that everyone is ready for 2017 to be a better year than 2016.