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BetaAnt

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The end of the world as we know it ....
« on: Jun 08, 2013, 03:16 »
So far we have...
A rapidly shrinking HP Tech pool (avg age is in the 50s). :o
Stagnant wages ($24-$26/hr is the norm for the last ten years). :(
Shorter outages (most less than 30 days). :-[
Increasing hostile corporate management (do more with less techs). ???
Cut backs in travel and per diem. >:(
Upside down payscales (craft workers paid more than HPs). :(
More responsibilities (ALWAYS HPs FAULT). :(

What happens if they had an outage and no or fewer HPs showed up? Corporate would pull a friends and family plan outage (and whoever showed up at the day labor shelter at the Home Depot). :(

I am ready for my McDonald hat. Want fries with that? 8)

Content1

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Re: The end of the world as we know it ....
« Reply #1 on: Jun 08, 2013, 06:04 »
If they hire the unqualified and they cause an incident, their plant will be shut down, fined, and the qualified will have more D&D work to finish their 50+ lives.  As people die off and the newbie are not trained, the qualified will be offered more and more.  Finally, the older folks can write books about the industry when they retire.  There is always a positive to any negative turn of events.

nukewood

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Re: The end of the world as we know it ....
« Reply #2 on: Jun 08, 2013, 06:11 »
So far we have...
A rapidly shrinking HP Tech pool (avg age is in the 50s).
Stagnant wages ($24-$26/hr is the norm for the last ten years).
Shorter outages (most less than 30 days).
Increasing hostile corporate management (do more with less techs).
Cut backs in travel and per diem.
Upside down payscales (craft workers paid more than HPs).
More responsibilities (ALWAYS HPs FAULT).

What happens if they had an outage and no or fewer HPs showed up? Corporate would pull a friends and family plan outage (and whoever showed up at the day labor shelter at the Home Depot).

I am ready for my McDonald hat. Want fries with that?
 
 
 
 If you live on a river there is always somebody pissing upstream.

Offline Old HP

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Re: The end of the world as we know it ....
« Reply #3 on: Jun 08, 2013, 06:29 »
Nukewood, I know you have lived on a few rivers and seen the yellow flow upstream .
The Nuclear climate has been changing for awhile now, as the elders of the industry are retiring and taking their knowledge and experience with them. Then lets throw in the recent announcement about SONGS and do the math to realize the  operating commercial reactor population has decreased by 4 so far this year. What does the future hold ?  Not a bright picture for the newer people entering the industry.
Is the nuclear world going to end?  Not for awhile, but age is catching up with all of us, people and plants.

P.S.   Don't drink the yellow water upstream or downsteam.

Offline UncaBuffalo

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Re: The end of the world as we know it ....
« Reply #4 on: Jun 08, 2013, 09:30 »
So far we have...
A rapidly shrinking HP Tech pool (avg age is in the 50s). :o
...

Are you saying the amount of jobs is getting smaller for the available techs?  If so, I agree?  It's going to be an esp. tough outage season this fall.

However your age comment has me a bit baffled.  Most of the time when I hear someone point to the aging workforce, they are saying that the supply of techs is going down.  That's definitely not happening now, as a quick glance at this list of schools that are pumping out graduates shows:  http://www.nukeworker.com/forum/index.php/topic,34778.msg162220.html#msg162220 .  And I would guess the average age of techs is actually headed back down again...how long ago did you read that it was in the 50's?

I agree with a lot of your post...being an HP tech isn't the same gig it was twenty years ago.  But I'm not ready to flip burgers!

:)
The days that I keep my gratitude higher than my expectations, I have really good days. -Ray Wylie Hubbard

Content1

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Re: The end of the world as we know it ....
« Reply #5 on: Jun 08, 2013, 10:45 »
Are you saying the amount of jobs is getting smaller for the available techs?  If so, I agree?  It's going to be an esp. tough outage season this fall.

However your age comment has me a bit baffled.  Most of the time when I hear someone point to the aging workforce, they are saying that the supply of techs is going down.  That's definitely not happening now, as a quick glance at this list of schools that are pumping out graduates shows:  http://www.nukeworker.com/forum/index.php/topic,34778.msg162220.html#msg162220 .  And I would guess the average age of techs is actually headed back down again...how long ago did you read that it was in the 50's?

:)

Let look at the practical application of the education effort to replace people you have quoted and to reduce the average age.

(1) It costs the individual gobs of money.  They would seek a higher paying operators job rather than a lower paying traveling HP, when they must pay back $20,000 tuition costs plus lost time while in school.
(2) Ex-Navy people paid for their training with time and low wages, but it is paid for.  More often than not they are still preferred over the inexperienced 2 year graduates.
(3) All that education gives you is one year towards you 1.8 & 3.1 qualifications.  If you were trying to make it at outages if somehow you have friends that get you in as a junior, you still face 6 years of short outages with the bill for your education coming due 6 months from graduation to reach the senior HP position.
(4) If they are truly producing all these graduates with so few jobs some claims of educational fraud
will be claimed by graduates when they can’t get a job.  This will cause school to shut down.
(5) A traveling job basically sucks except for the money.  Those over 50+ are from a generation used to hard work and sacrifice vs. the “me first” of the current young folk.  When they realize you must first pay out of your pocket up to $1000 to travel, get lodging bought in advance, gas and food just to show up for an outage, take an advance of $750 that is taken from your first checks, then the outage is cut short and you are left holding the bag, they may not go for the system.
(6) Those younger folk with families may not get used to separation from family for months at a time, missing little Suzie’s recital again and the divorce rate skyrockets for traveling techs.  The older folk’s children are usually grown and it is not a problem.
(7) We know the reality there are few who are in the traveling circuit who come from these schools and juniors get their breaks from traveling with the more desired seniors.

It is for these and other reasons we older fork are not shaking in our boots with our imminent replacement by a wave of eager trained younger folk flooding the business nor a dropping of the average age anytime soon.




Offline UncaBuffalo

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Re: The end of the world as we know it ....
« Reply #6 on: Jun 08, 2013, 11:06 »
Let look at the practical application of the education effort to replace people you have quoted and to reduce the average age.

(1) It costs the individual gobs of money.  They would seek a higher paying operators job rather than a lower paying traveling HP, when they must pay back $20,000 tuition costs plus lost time while in school.
(2) Ex-Navy people paid for their training with time and low wages, but it is paid for.  More often than not they are still preferred over the inexperienced 2 year graduates.
(3) All that education gives you is one year towards you 1.8 & 3.1 qualifications.  If you were trying to make it at outages if somehow you have friends that get you in as a junior, you still face 6 years of short outages with the bill for your education coming due 6 months from graduation to reach the senior HP position.
(4) If they are truly producing all these graduates with so few jobs some claims of educational fraud
will be claimed by graduates when they can’t get a job.  This will cause school to shut down.
(5) A traveling job basically sucks except for the money.  Those over 50+ are from a generation used to hard work and sacrifice vs. the “me first” of the current young folk.  When they realize you must first pay out of your pocket up to $1000 to travel, get lodging bought in advance, gas and food just to show up for an outage, take an advance of $750 that is taken from your first checks, then the outage is cut short and you are left holding the bag, they may not go for the system.
(6) Those younger folk with families may not get used to separation from family for months at a time, missing little Suzie’s recital again and the divorce rate skyrockets for traveling techs.  The older folk’s children are usually grown and it is not a problem.
(7) We know the reality there are few who are in the traveling circuit who come from these schools and juniors get their breaks from traveling with the more desired seniors.

It is for these and other reasons we older fork are not shaking in our boots with our imminent replacement by a wave of eager trained younger folk flooding the business nor a dropping of the average age anytime soon.


I agree that the schools aren't the only source of new techs.  As you point out, the navy is still pumping out a steady stream of competition for the jobs.  And don't forget all the DOE techs that got the boot when the stimulus money ran out.

I'm not in the middle of it right now, so all my info is secondhand.  But, reading the posts on this site...and talking to friends still in the industry...and doing the math based on how few outages there are this fall makes me think we have an oversupply of techs right now.

Has the average age of techs come down yet?  Who knows?  That's why I asked...

Even though I'm not in it now, I am considering whether to come back, so I am extremely interested in knowing the facts.  

Thanks for sharing you opinion.  :)




...and let's touch on your point number 5.  While I'm one of the 'old techs' and would love to pat myself on the back for my work ethic, I seem to remember a few outages where I spent most of the shift dressed out in the can1 because some of the other oldsters needed to sit PCMs due to their health issues...so age cuts both ways.  ;)



...and another thought about point number 5.  I still like being a rent-a-tech.  Right now I have something different I'm trying, but going back on the road will always be high on my list of future options...because I enjoy it.  :)




1.  I actually prefer to be dressed out in the can...but there's a huge difference between doing it because I want to, and being required to do it because some techs can't pull their weight.
« Last Edit: Jun 08, 2013, 11:36 by UncaBuffalo »
The days that I keep my gratitude higher than my expectations, I have really good days. -Ray Wylie Hubbard

Content1

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Re: The end of the world as we know it ....
« Reply #7 on: Jun 08, 2013, 11:33 »

...and let's touch on your point number 5.  While I'm one of the 'old techs' and would love to pat myself on the back for my work ethic, I seem to remember a few outages where I spent most of the shift dressed out in the can because some of the other oldsters needed to sit PCMs due to their health issues...so age cuts both ways.  ;)

...and another thought about point number 5.  I still like being a rent-a-tech.  Right now I have something different I'm trying, but going back on the road will always be high on my list of future options...because I enjoy it.  :)

This is why we would welcome new blood to go into the can for us.  Health issues are a concern.  We use more then our share of the handicapped spots nowadays.  The flesh is willing, but the body is getting weaker as time goes by.  When my time comes for retirement, I will go.  I met guys in their 70's.  They were begged to come back due to lack of trained qualified people.  By trained, I mean for a particular plant.  They hate to pay for any training anymore.

Offline GLW

Re: The end of the world as we know it ....
« Reply #8 on: Jun 09, 2013, 12:39 »

....(3) All that education gives you is one year towards you 1.8 & 3.1 qualifications.  If you were trying to make it at outages if somehow you have friends that get you in as a junior, you still face 6 years of short outages with the bill for your education coming due 6 months from graduation to reach the senior HP position...........

How many times over how many years do you have to be re-educated that there are no 1.8 senior techs?!?!?!

Some plants accept senior at the 1.8 level, ans she is close to that level.  The plan is to work as a 1.8 until you reach 3.1.

Quote
Quote from: Marssim on Feb 04, 2010, 00:29

You're missing the emoticons again,....

There are no 1.8 seniors,....

There are 18.1 seniors under an older standard,....

I thought you had 20 years in this RP business?!?!?!?!,...  ;)

Heard back from Joey, and I quote:

At 03:12 PM 2/4/2010, you wrote:
Not true - we have several sites that still accept 18.1 SHP's (24 Months
of HP Time)
"A staffing and solutions company"

Joey Melanson

Sr. Lead Recruiter

I hope this puts this matter to rest.


Quote
Quote from: Marssim on Feb 04, 2010, 02:14
If Joey gives you a confirmation letter for employment as an ANSI 1.8 Senior Technician on Bartlett letterhead,...I'll give you 50 bucks,....

It would be worth every penny to see Jerry Hiatt's face when he learns his company is confirming 1.8 Senior Technicians at plant XYZ,...

Quote

You will give up 50 bucks so easily.   Before I take your money, call Joey yourself.  My posting was from his actual email to me, that is why the time and date was showing.

Why are you having such a hard time with this....THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS AN 1.8 SENIOR HP !!!!!!!!!!    They are 18.1 seniors.  Reread all your replies Dude.......and pay Marssim his $50, because Joey knows there is no such thing.

TYpo, and I am not as fast as the younger folks catching on and need to be spoon fed sometimes.  In any case, an 18.1 is a good place for a junior to go to on their to a 3.1 senior.  "Oops", as Brittney would say. :D :D :D

It's embarrassing,...

I've worked with a few of these "RP mill school" techs down there in their mid to late 20's,...

They all know the difference between the designations of 18.1 and 3.1 and every time you show up spouting off about 1.8s it just hurts,...

We thank you for your co-operation,...almost forgot,... [coffee]
« Last Edit: Jun 09, 2013, 01:52 by GLW »

been there, dun that,... the doormat to hell does not read "welcome", the doormat to hell reads "it's just business"

Content1

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Re: The end of the world as we know it ....
« Reply #9 on: Jun 09, 2013, 12:48 »
Make that 18.1 then.  It is amazing the time you spent on that rant.

Offline GLW

Re: The end of the world as we know it ....
« Reply #10 on: Jun 09, 2013, 01:50 »
Make that 18.1 then.  It is amazing the time you spent on that rant.

4.4 minutes,....

been there, dun that,... the doormat to hell does not read "welcome", the doormat to hell reads "it's just business"

Offline jkj

Re: The end of the world as we know it ....
« Reply #11 on: Jun 09, 2013, 09:31 »
....... "and I feel fine!" :P
Words fail me and pictures aren't much better.

"Never take no cut-offs, and hurry along as fast as you can."-- (Virginia Reed; member of Donner party.)

Offline HydroDave63

Re: The end of the world as we know it ....
« Reply #12 on: Jun 09, 2013, 11:22 »
Make that 18.1 then.  It is amazing the time you spent on that rant.

I'd call it 'Quality Control'  :P

Offline storm13

Re: The end of the world as we know it ....
« Reply #13 on: Jun 09, 2013, 08:58 »

(5) .... Those over 50+ are from a generation used to hard work and sacrifice vs. the “me first” of the current young folk. 

I'm not yet 50, but it amazes me the difference between most 40+ guys and 20-something guys.  Seems like the 20-somethings put in about 3-4 hours of "work" in a 12.5 hour shift, and we 40+ guys end up working our tails off to keep things going.  Some of it may be a knowledge/wisdom issue, but a lot of it seems to be young guys these days are just flat lazy, and feel entitled to everything, whether they've worked for it or not.

Offline retired nuke

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Re: The end of the world as we know it ....
« Reply #14 on: Jun 10, 2013, 06:52 »
I'm not yet 50, but it amazes me the difference between most 40+ guys and 20-something guys.  Seems like the 20-somethings put in about 3-4 hours of "work" in a 12.5 hour shift, and we 40+ guys end up working our tails off to keep things going.  Some of it may be a knowledge/wisdom issue, but a lot of it seems to be young guys these days are just flat lazy, and feel entitled to everything, whether they've worked for it or not.

I blame that on the "everybody gets a trophy" scheduled organized sports and the fact that they have been told all their lives they are special to help their self esteem.
My generation got self esteem by playing baseball in recently hayed fields, mowing lawns, shoveling snow, earning money, buying our own 10 speed, saving for a boat.... yada yada.

Sometimes I feel like Clint in Gran Torino... (people have told me I'm that friendly... :o
Remember who you love. Remember what is sacred. Remember what is true.
Remember that you will die, and that this day is a gift. Remember how you wish to live, may the blessing of the Lord be with you

Offline Lip2303

Re: The end of the world as we know it ....
« Reply #15 on: Jun 10, 2013, 07:43 »
The last places I have worked (DOE, Private Waste Company, and Duke Outage) the "older" crew thought they had earned their pay already and it was the "younger" guys job to go out and actually do work while they sat around the break room and did nothing.

Obviously this is not the norm everywhere, but some young guys work their butts off some old guys work their butts off. I blame supervision for allowing the slackers to slack personally!
ALARA specialist
RRPT

Offline GLW

Re: The end of the world as we know it ....
« Reply #16 on: Jun 10, 2013, 09:28 »
......I blame supervision for allowing the slackers to slack personally!

yup, pert much,... [coffee]

been there, dun that,... the doormat to hell does not read "welcome", the doormat to hell reads "it's just business"

chuckdhuff

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Re: The end of the world as we know it ....
« Reply #17 on: Jun 10, 2013, 09:37 »
I'm not yet 50, but it amazes me the difference between most 40+ guys and 20-something guys.  Seems like the 20-somethings put in about 3-4 hours of "work" in a 12.5 hour shift, and we 40+ guys end up working our tails off to keep things going.  Some of it may be a knowledge/wisdom issue, but a lot of it seems to be young guys these days are just flat lazy, and feel entitled to everything, whether they've worked for it or not.

I blame that on the "everybody gets a trophy" scheduled organized sports and the fact that they have been told all their lives they are special to help their self esteem.
My generation got self esteem by playing baseball in recently hayed fields, mowing lawns, shoveling snow, earning money, buying our own 10 speed, saving for a boat.... yada yada.

Sometimes I feel like Clint in Gran Torino... (people have told me I'm that friendly... :o

I am sure that "The Greatest Generation" had a few harsh words for the "Baby Boomer's" work ethic as well. This will transfer from generation to generation. I guess that at 35 I am "Generation X"? I don't believe that work ethic is something based on your generation, but how you were raised. I had good examples, father and grandfather, that both were/are hard workers and war veterans, and I was most certainly not coddled.

My kids are being raised the same way. Yes, they play sports to have fun, but we are keeping score and it's a lot more fun when you win. So if you don't try hard you're going to hear about it.

Offline GLW

Re: The end of the world as we know it ....
« Reply #18 on: Jun 10, 2013, 09:41 »
....I don't believe that work ethic is something based on your generation, but how you were raised. I had good examples, father and grandfather, that both were/are hard workers and war veterans, and I was most certainly not coddled.....

yup, pert much,... [coffee]

.... I guess that at 35 I am "Generation X"? I don't believe that work ethic is something based on your generation, but how you were raised.....

The "work ethic" which doomed Zion was not the product of "Gen X",... :-\

been there, dun that,... the doormat to hell does not read "welcome", the doormat to hell reads "it's just business"

Offline GLW

Re: The end of the world as we know it ....
« Reply #19 on: Jun 10, 2013, 09:56 »
I'm not yet 50, but it amazes me the difference between most 40+ guys and 20-something guys.  Seems like the 20-somethings put in about 3-4 hours of "work" in a 12.5 hour shift, and we 40+ guys end up working our tails off to keep things going.  Some of it may be a knowledge/wisdom issue, but a lot of it seems to be young guys these days are just flat lazy, and feel entitled to everything, whether they've worked for it or not.

That's too easy,...

There are a lot of names from 25 years ago that are nowhere to be found scrambling ladders in the turbine building anymore and they are not dead, nor have they moved upwards in the hierarchy, they just could not or would not cut it and moved on to other means of making a buck,...

Many of those were part of the surge from the TMI upgrades, a regulated power market, and "tavern recruitment" campaigns made infamous by the likes of JW, CP, etal,...

Same thing today, you may very well see a lot of stimulus spawn poking around and taking a paycheck but most of those which annoy you will not be pulling nuke paychecks 10 years out,...

But in all that spawn you will notice some really hard workers, who hang on to every bit of new quals and experience they can get, and always seem to be moving and doing,...

In 10 years they'll be running jobs, in 20 years; crews, shifts and companies,...

If you're lucky they'll remember you are actually a very valuable old codger and they'll find a good fit for you in their organization knowing that when they need you to help out with an oolie,...you'll be there,...

In the meantime, be thankful for the "just flat lazy, and feeling entitled to everything" stimulus spawn,....they keep you necessary,...

I'm just saying,... [coffee]
« Last Edit: Jun 10, 2013, 10:01 by GLW »

been there, dun that,... the doormat to hell does not read "welcome", the doormat to hell reads "it's just business"

BetaAnt

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Re: The end of the world as we know it ....
« Reply #20 on: Jun 10, 2013, 11:44 »
Seems like I hit a cord with the 'baby boomer' gen.  :)

Many commercial plants give only 1/2 time for DOE techs due to bad experiences in the past (radiation and contamination paranoia - lets all wear respirators).  :-\

Some of the young bucks have a give-a-#hit attitude (they don't). They know everything and learned all their radcon knowledge from Daddy (maintenance foreman). Or you may hear the refrain, "I can't get fired 'cause my insert here (aunt, uncle, cousin, daddy, momma, sister, brother - THE MANAGER) got me this job". Incest is best, keep it in the family (or TVA or DOE - hell, they're both government).  >:(

There is a bit or resentment by the 'ole farts' too. Some of us will take a few under guidance and teach a few tricks. Anyone remember how to determine the origin of a 'flea' with a security badge. If you do you are old school. The 'new' school does not teach any of the old thumb rules. Nor do they teach how to find contamination, hot spots, or recognize radiological problems. This is probably due to instructors following the book and not deviating (Deviating is frowned upon by corporate auditors). The lesson planners are mostly marginal and cut and paste from dry text (see Golnick).  :o

The new radcon schools are good for basics. Just like med school. But, like med school, you will not be allowed to perform a heart transplant out of school nor cover a high risk evolutions (diver operations, RHR or RCP rebuild, or thimble retrieval) unassisted. Experience counts and the new kids are not getting it (understaffing HPs saves bucks but diminishes the knowledge pool). The utilities are digging their own graves with understaffing and not promoting mentoring.  8)

I can say that I have promoted a lively discussion here. I hope it continues. Join some of the nuclear groups on LinkedIn. You can get a conduit to discussions with some curious and caring (?) management.  :)

Have a nice day  :) :) :)

BA  8)

 


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