BAJR Federation Archaeology

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company A does not have local knowledge in this case, nor an exceptional relationship with the site (construction) contractor.
archaeofutur Wrote:The work has been offerred as 'this or nothing' but has not been fairly distributed accross the field team.

Perhaps Archaeofutur you should give some consideration to the quoted sentence.

If this is truly a 'this or nothing' situation,then it isn't merely just a case of subcontracted work but a potential redundancy situation. If that is the case, your presumption that selection for the subcontracted job has been unfair, could be grounds for non-selected staff claiming unfair dismissal if they are laid off as a result of not working on the project.

I am sure you didn't really mean that, and wouldn't want to prejudice anyone's future employment prospects....
Can see why Company B might be having recruitment problems though! - but if there's no work at Company A why aren't their 'spare' workforce applying for work with Company B who clearly have work (and have shown themselves better at getting work) and need people?...[or has the 'Digging Circuit' ceased to exist in anything but happy memories? - seem to recall that was kinda how it worked, you went to the outfit with the jobs]...or does Company B prefer getting the same people cut-price from Company A?
And there we go. I hope. A way to keep work and working.
Tough times... but at least people will have work... I would hope that drivers get paid... as they are not going to be asleep or reading the paper.
Dinosaur - I suppose they could go for a job direct with company B, but i guess there'd be no guarantee they could go back to A afterwards. Its possible they may have a permanent contract, or at least long service at B which gives benefits that would be lost by switching to a short term job at another company. At the end of the day sub-contracting a team can be a quick simple way to get staff, and be of benefit to both companies/staff. Who knows, perhaps even the client and, god forbid, the archaeology do OK as well.

You do need to treat the staff right though....
I'd like to see a Trade Union involved in all of this though...it does seem to me that left to the devices of the market place the 'losers', if this all goes tits-up, are going to probably be those least able to bear the burden.....
Dinosaur Wrote:Can see why Company B might be having recruitment problems though! - but if there's no work at Company A why aren't their 'spare' workforce applying for work with Company B who clearly have work (and have shown themselves better at getting work) and need people?...[or has the 'Digging Circuit' ceased to exist in anything but happy memories? - seem to recall that was kinda how it worked, you went to the outfit with the jobs]...or does Company B prefer getting the same people cut-price from Company A?

People work for A because it does work in a more or less local area. Working for B would still involve long commutes. Diggers dnt get paid enough to continuely move- what of the fair expectation of a home life and career development?

I am tired of 'works work, times tough' field staff should not beo. expected to put up with anything thrown at us, yet the office is always safe! (Same old Gripes)
archaeofutur Wrote:People work for A because it does work in a more or less local area. Working for B would still involve long commutes. Diggers dnt get paid enough to continuely move- what of the fair expectation of a home life and career development? I am tired of 'works work, times tough' field staff should not beo. expected to put up with anything thrown at us, yet the office is always safe! (Same old Gripes)

Don't believe that office jobs these days are any safer than field posts. I can name a number of units over the past 3 years that have been as brutal lopping posts in the office as they have in the field. At the end of the day what will guarantee you work in UK archaeology is if you can generate funding. It strikes me that at present that is equally likely in the field as in the office or as many of us have found, by combining a mix of the two, rather than committing totally to the dark side or the side of the angels!!

Based on previous experience of hard times in archaeology, people make choices. Some will put up with regressive changes in terms and conditions to protect what little they have, others will look for ways out of the trade. It has to be said though that waiting until the tough times hit archaeology. BEFORE starting to look for an alternative career (particularly with the current dearth of alternatives positions) is perhaps akin to looking for needles in haystacks. As has often been quoted on these pages, nobody is owed a living in archaeology and there are very few giveaways. Of course staff 'should not be expected' to put up with loads of things, but unless you make a decision to do something about it, either as an individual or as part of a collective, nothing will change.....simple logic really.

I have worked in archaeology for 30+ years and know a lot of archaeologists in the UK and abroad. Most of those that I would consider successful and content have at sometime in their career taken charge of their destiny. Sometimes having to take a sideways or even backward step to eventually move forward; the important thing being to keep moving and present as small a target as possible whilst doing so (we use to call that 'Maoism' in the good old days!). I have posted a couple of times on this site asking for folk to tell us how they are doing in the current climate and relate strategies they have adopted or are adopting. Few people reply in the first person, although as this thread demonstrates, third person narrative suggests there are a lot of people adopting a pragmatic approach to protecting some form of archaeological career. I am sure that maintaining a home life and a career structure is still important to many archaeologists, but long term unemployment can be a great leveller of aspiration. I'm sure we all know any number of archaeologists who at present lack any kind of stable family or home life as a result of career 'choices'...

That said in my 30 years spent as an archaeologist, this current 'hard time' seems to be both the longest and the toughest, especially for students and new entrants to the trade. Just hope there are a few of us left in 5 years time...
archaeofutur Wrote:People work for A because it does work in a more or less local area. Working for B would still involve long commutes. Diggers dnt get paid enough to continuely move- what of the fair expectation of a home life and career development?

Oh, right, the 'Digging Circuit' is dead then. RIP :face-crying:
I have heard from other archaeologists at the unit, and sadly, I wasn't given all the information. I was given more of a kneejerk reaction from one individual without getting the facts. Sorry for jumping the gun without getting all the info. There are a number of options being discussed (which is none of my business really because I don't work for that unit) dealing with payment and travel options that sound reasonable. I hope what I wrote doesn't jepordise their opportunity for this project, as the archaeologists are looking forward to doing this excavation...well, all but one! This isn't an isolated incident though. I have seen archaeologists travelling hours to sites for many years. I remember doing it in the 90s- travelling half a day to get to a site and staying in any variety of accomodation from caravans to rather luxurious B&Bs. I wish them good luck in securing this contract. We're living in difficult times, and no one wants to lose out on the few digging opportunities out there.
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