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Thread: If you were hiring.......

  1. #1
    Mke
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    Default If you were hiring.......

    So, it has been about 9 months since my co-worker was relieved of his duties and now we are finally getting the ball rolling on hiring another locator. I'm currently looking through past interview questions and filtering out the useless ones and refining some of the more important ones. This is when I came to an impass. How does one fine a good locator through verbal questions? None of the locators that have worked here has had to take a field test. I'm trying to get one initiated, but the proccess is kinda cumbersome.

    Anyone know of any questions you think would seperate the good from the bad?


    Just curious.

    Mke

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    Member swagman's Avatar
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    Default Re: If you were hiring.......

    Just pick me ,Mikey Lol

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    Default Re: If you were hiring.......

    Quote Originally Posted by Mke View Post
    So, it has been about 9 months since my co-worker was relieved of his duties and now we are finally getting the ball rolling on hiring another locator. I'm currently looking through past interview questions and filtering out the useless ones and refining some of the more important ones. This is when I came to an impass. How does one fine a good locator through verbal questions? None of the locators that have worked here has had to take a field test. I'm trying to get one initiated, but the proccess is kinda cumbersome.

    Anyone know of any questions you think would seperate the good from the bad?


    Just curious.

    Mke
    For questions,

    What was your most difficult locate and how did you finally get it marked?

    (Answer will show their problem solving ability. It will also show if they are not so ego driven as to call their supervisor if they run into something un-locatable. )

    What was your worst damage and how did you get it wrong?
    (everyone has one of these and their honesty about it shows their integrity. In their answer you will see if they learned anything form the mistake.)

    This job often requires extensive hours and often with no notice of the need to stay late. Sometimes we work 60 to 80 hours in a week. What interferes with your ability to do this kind of work?

    What is the longest continuous hours of work you have performed? (Not as a locator but I have worked in excess of 24 hours straight in two other jobs.)
    (The answer shows their willingness to do what it takes to get the job done.)

    We perform basic vehicle maintenance. Check oil and fluids, change flats. You are out in the middle of nowhere and the heater hose breaks, what do you do? (seems a silly question but i work with guys that say they do not know anything about cars.)

    (Calling for fleet maintenance is the usual answer and acceptable. But the heater is not needed of the windshield does not need defrosting. The hose can temporally mended with a short section of pipe shoved into the ends of the broken hose and clamped tight. Where the leak is cut the hose and pipe it there. Lacking such a piece of pipe in the proper diameter you can shove some solid cylinder into the hose and clamp it shut, I used an AA battery. Where there is a leak you run with the radiator cap off which keeps the pressure lower so the coolant does not run out so quickly. This way if you can get water into the radiator you can limp it to where it can be repaired.)

    The answer shows their self reliance and knowledge of basic vehicle maintenance.

    Just as a note I know a guy whose rear truck tire threw off all it's thread, peeled off like a banana. He was 60 miles from home, late at night, middle of nowhere and the spare was flat. He looked through the tool bin, jacked up the truck and wrapped the tire with three rolls of duct tape. He made it home.

    'If you've ever fixed a flat tire with duct tape - yoooou might be a redneck'

    Your transmitter is not putting out a signal, what do you do?

    (See if they understand it enough. Do they first check the batteries? Do they check the leads for breaks inside the insulation by pulling on them? Do they know how to jury rig them until proper repairs can be made? Shows their level of basic knowledge needed.)

    For those who use a 12v to 120v power inverter they will run a small soldering iron easily. You can field solder leads on the back of the truck. Just use a long extension cord.

    If you are marking phone;

    You connect to the ground sheath of a copper main, or the tracer wire of a FO cable, and cannot get a signal. After checking your receiver and transmitter what do you check next? (See if the know to go the the next location to see if the tracer or sheath is grounded there.

    You connect to a tracer wire on a FO line. At the other end their is no ground rod. You push the far end of the tracer wire into the earth and still cannot get a signal, what do you try next? (Two answers are they drive a metal object like a screw driver deep into the earth as it will go and connect the tracer wire to it. Usually works but if the soil is dry, especially sandy soil, you need to pour water on it. You can pee on it also but the residents usually object.

    The marking instructions tell you to mark the north side of the property, how do you tell which way is north? (Don't laugh, a lot of people today cannot tell you which way is north, south, east or west even when looking on a map)

    Give them a drawing for an area to be marked and tell them to shade in the areas to be marked. The instructions say;

    From the Southwest corner of First St and Main Street mark from 200 feet south to 175 feet, east for 200', north for 175' and west for two hundered feet.

    They should shade in a box on the east side of the road and the box starts 200 south from the intersection and goes away from the road for 200' east, then it back north for 175 where it turns back west towards the road at and ends at the starting point.


    I had a guy call me for help on instructions like above. He was trying to mark the roadway at the intersection and completely unaware of where to mark, no longer with us. I find reading comprehension to be poor in many people, perhaps what they say about people no longer read much is true.

    Use several real locate ticket instructions to see if they have basic reading ability and comprehension.


    I guess some more things will come to mind in time.

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    Senior Member yahoo's Avatar
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    Default Re: If you were hiring.......

    yes I agree that THIS is an extreme view and answer! All of the best questions in the world asked , will probably get a half truth-half lie answer ! Since you can't judge a book by its cover, you will have to just get lucky to find a good worker ! I wish you all the luck in the world !
    wise men talk because they have something to say and fools because they have to say something....plato

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    Mke
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    Default Re: If you were hiring.......

    Quote Originally Posted by swagman View Post
    Just pick me ,Mikey Lol
    I don't think we can afford you, Bobbert. But if you ever wanted to lower your Idaho standard of living Let me know...

    Mke

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    Default Re: If you were hiring.......

    It's a crap shoot. I've hired dozens in this business in my 20 yrs. One guy I hired ran a daycare with his wife before they sold it. He was a "I'll give him a shot" hire..The guy was mr. perfect and has lasted 15 yrs in the industry. Other guys come in talking a good game claiming they can do this and fail awfully. Look for farm kids, former house builders, and outdoorsman. Coming into this from an office setting is a recipe for failure..Their skin is too thin when the wind and snow start blowing..Look for people with kids and mortgages as well, not that you can ask about that, but it's usually apparent..Those folks don't miss work because of hangovers from being out drinking all night with their barely legal buddies. Just don't ask that stupid question lots of HR folks ask ya at the interview about "your worst fault or behavior" thats just crap. Good luck

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    Senior Member Wingfoot's Avatar
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    Default Re: If you were hiring.......

    Quote Originally Posted by radar o reily View Post
    It's a crap shoot..Look for farm kids, former house builders, and outdoorsman..Coming into this from an office setting is a recipe for failure..Their skin is too thin when the wind and snow start blowing..Look for people with kids and mortgages..Those folks don't miss work because of hangovers from being out drinking all night with their barely legal buddies..Good luck
    Hey radar - Thumbs up on all counts from an ol' Iowa farm kid! Great insight on all your pointers.

    I sat at a desk once in my working career; five years and hated every day. Then worked many years as an outside sales representative. Dropped the white-collar gig for this blue-collar locating gig. Fifteen plus years as a locator so far and I can't see myself doing anything else.

    It's a sad reflection on our society when more than half of today's applicants can't pass a drug test. It's aggravating when a decision is made and the prospective employee says they can pass a drug test and fail miserably. Why do they even bother? Single people in their twenties (anybody, for that manner) really limit themselves when they delve into heavy booze consumption and/or recreation pharmaceuticals.

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    Default Re: If you were hiring.......

    Quote Originally Posted by ProfessionalLocator View Post
    Your transmitter is not putting out a signal, what do you do?

    (See if they understand it enough. Do they first check the batteries? Do they check the leads for breaks inside the insulation by pulling on them? Do they know how to jury rig them until proper repairs can be made? Shows their level of basic knowledge needed.)

    For those who use a 12v to 120v power inverter they will run a small soldering iron easily. You can field solder leads on the back of the truck. Just use a long extension cord.
    Propane soldering irons do not need power, are cheap, and actually work in cold weather.

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