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Thread: whats sup with working for utiquest?

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    Default whats sup with working for utiquest?

    Hi Im thinking about going to utiliquest and want to hear what it is like for those guys
    Whats your on call like and do you guys have assigned areas that you cover?

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    Default Re: whats sup with working for utiquest?

    We have weekly on-calls starting 0700 on Monday. For the most part each tech is assigned a county. I have been in my county for two years. I am from the Smyrna Delaware Office.

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    Default Re: whats sup with working for utiquest?

    this is company wide or by district Id be looking in Dallas

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    Default Re: whats sup with working for utiquest?

    Quote Originally Posted by mikeinnella View Post
    Hi Im thinking about going to utiliquest and want to hear what it is like for those guys
    Whats your on call like and do you guys have assigned areas that you cover?
    Utiliquest led the market with micromanagement of locators. You have a camera mounted in the cab that records not only the road ahead but inside the cab as well. It also records all the audio so they can hear anything you say. This was supposed to be for insurance to record accidents and the camera was set to go on if a heave g force like an impact or sudden hard breaking. Immediately they reset all the cameras to go off at the slightest bump or turn and they became spy cameras. They began writing up locators for having a cigarette in their mouth or a soda in their hand. The current version uses wireless transmissions and I cannot find on the net if it has the capacity or does not have the capacity to be turned on remotely regardless of g-forces.

    When GPS came on they added many things to that. Now it is tied into the ticket load software and the computer, not the locator, picks what order to do the ticket in. You cannot see what the work entails until you get to the site and the GPS tracker determines you are on site and it allows you to open the ticket. Once you have started the ticket by opening it you cannot leave the site before completing the ticket or an e-mail alarm is sent to your foreman. So have pack a lunch or go hungry if you get stuck on a long job. You will have to clock out for lunch at a time determined by your supervisor so have food with you. Once you clock out for lunch GPS will send an alarm if you move the truck so going to get lunch is not an option.

    They are trying to add the "Smart Stick" to their inventory which is a GPS enabled paint stick that will record to a drawing on the laptop every time you spray paint.

    Stopping the truck more than a few minutes causes GPS to send an alarm so if you stop to use the bathroom you will have to answer for this time to your foreman who is required to log a reply to the email, so everytime you take a dump it goes into the company record.

    From their locators I get the impression that this firm does not like locators and does not consider them to be capable of self directed work or of being honest. They have spent millions of dollars on high tech devises that are supposed to replace training and developing good locators. They have funded these new expenses by making cuts to you know who's pay and benefits and I do not mean top management. Each office is a little different and a good manager can make things a bit better but overall not a haven for locators.

    If you have followed these forums you would have seen where Utiliquest has lost a number of contracts nationwide. Now contracts tend to come and go but here a trend is beginning to show. As Utiliquest has reduced training, developing and keeping locators, trying to replace ability with technology, quality has suffered.

    Most firms have assigned areas and some form of PFP. As a locator is in their area their productivity goes up and with it their pay. At least one of the managers I know moves his locators around over riding the foreman. He will move locator A into B's area, B into C's area and C into A's area. The result is lowered productivity and a pay cut, then they are moved back to their old areas, for awhile. I do not know how many managers practice this but I know that not all do it.

    In the DC area they lost Comcast a few years ago. Then they just lost WSSC, Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission, which is a contract they had over 20 years back to their Byers Engineering days. They also just lost the Verizon contract for all of Virginia. Do you see the trend here?

    To get the real story of what is happening in Delaware you will probably have to the the info back channel by either private e-mail or a private message on this board. I do not work in Delaware so it won't come from me.

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