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  • Dec 6th, 2017 11:15 am
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Newbie
Feb 9, 2010
10 posts
1 upvote
canada14

on call work?

Anyone had a job where your on a spareboard / on call ? Was hired a place in the summer and said it would be full time work, ended up working for a full month. They then decided to lay a few of us off and put us on a spareboard. Expecting us to be on call for a day shift or afternoon shift. Day shift starting at 5am and afternoon shift starting at 5pm.. Just wondering how people have delt with these situations cause it feels like your life is always waiting on work to call you? The thing is its decent pay, so it sucks if you have to miss a shift, but on the flip side you could be called 5-10 minutes before a shift start. Basically feels like my life is waiting for a call 7 days a week, which can be frustrating at times.
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Deal Addict
Aug 1, 2007
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Oncall work are meant to be on-call. Its supposedly a side job that you can decide if you want to work when they offer you shifts. There is no commitment both ways - they dont promise hours, you dont promise availability. The general "street rule" is that you work once every 6 weeks to keep your employee status active and that's it.

Ive had an on-call job for over 2 years and i loved it. It supplemented my f/t job income whenever i needed extra cash for toys, and i would turn down any shifts that i dont feel like working. It never really affected my personal life as i placed my weekend plans ahead of any shifts that they offered. I would only pick up a shift when i dont have any gatherings to attend. But when i sign up for a shift i show up as promised and gave my 100% effort. They had no issues with that and i got an excellent reference when i left.
Deal Addict
Nov 22, 2009
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Toronto
Canuck1985 wrote:
Dec 5th, 2017 8:13 pm
Anyone had a job where your on a spareboard / on call ? Was hired a place in the summer and said it would be full time work, ended up working for a full month. They then decided to lay a few of us off and put us on a spareboard. Expecting us to be on call for a day shift or afternoon shift. Day shift starting at 5am and afternoon shift starting at 5pm.. Just wondering how people have delt with these situations cause it feels like your life is always waiting on work to call you? The thing is its decent pay, so it sucks if you have to miss a shift, but on the flip side you could be called 5-10 minutes before a shift start. Basically feels like my life is waiting for a call 7 days a week, which can be frustrating at times.
"The thing is its decent pay"

It's decent pay because it's an on-call position. Just like how Lawyers get paid $200-300/hour because it's not like they will have clients asking them questions 8 hours a day, and many lawyers can't even afford to pay their legal clerks and administrators because they haven't had a client for an entire week. You've got to decide whether it's worth it to stay as is or find a new job.

"Just wondering how people have delt with these situations"

I had an on-call position during my university years and it was quite nice. I would get an availability request from my manager every week and I can decide if I would be available based on if I have assignments/plans that week. I never wanted it to be full-time because I can not guarantee my availability.
Deal Fanatic
Mar 15, 2005
5147 posts
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Canuck1985 wrote:
Dec 5th, 2017 8:13 pm
Anyone had a job where your on a spareboard / on call ? Was hired a place in the summer and said it would be full time work, ended up working for a full month. They then decided to lay a few of us off and put us on a spareboard. Expecting us to be on call for a day shift or afternoon shift. Day shift starting at 5am and afternoon shift starting at 5pm.. Just wondering how people have delt with these situations cause it feels like your life is always waiting on work to call you? The thing is its decent pay, so it sucks if you have to miss a shift, but on the flip side you could be called 5-10 minutes before a shift start. Basically feels like my life is waiting for a call 7 days a week, which can be frustrating at times.
Slightly different scenario

Dated a doctor doing her residency which meant she was on a rotation and periodically on call. It was annoying as hell for both of us. It makes it very hard to commit to long term plans, and even if you decide to go out on a whim and grab a nice dinner, they can't even have a glass of wine / may get called into work mid meal (which happened).

Unless you are getting paid a very sweet premium to live in a constant state of waiting for work, I wouldn't ever take this kind of job.

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