Monday, November 18, 2013

What Could Possibly Go Wrong?

File this under "Failures of Austerity":
The University of Michigan is cutting staff and centralizing its human resources and financial services in an effort to reduce costs.

The idea is to streamline certain functions by offering them in one place —a Shared Services Center.

When it's at full capacity in October 2014, the center will include 275 employees, doing the jobs of the roughly 325 people who currently tackle human resource and financial service functions throughout the school.

The 325 affected employees aren't guaranteed a job, but they'll all be considered for employment in the new center. As U-M put it in an email to employees they "will be invited to become candidates for employment."

The process of establishing internal candidates will allow U-M to inventory employee skills, said U-M spokesman Rick Fitzgerald.
I can imagine that morale among the staff there is just about zero, maybe a little lower.

What they are going to see is a higher turn over in staff as people get burnt out and realize there is something better for them elsewhere. Meanwhile, because there isn't enough staff to do the jobs necessary, the other employees will have a harder time getting what is due to them. And because of this, they too will start going elsewhere. And with faculty leaving, the students won't get the same level of education that they are being charged for. And the "long term savings" that the administration is boasting about will be eaten up in the cost of hiring and training new faculty and staff.

Brilliant concept, eh?

And if the gentle reader is wondering how I can be so confidant in these statements, it's because I've gone through it in the past fourteen years in Milwaukee County, first under Scott Walker and then under his protege, Chris Abele.

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