Thursday, December 5, 2013

facility advice

I've worked in a number of large/secure facilities where I had some sort of daily procedure to get work done. This was generally either to reach something that was usually inaccessible, or to get a needed resource, like large quantities of water for drilling.

These places often have a protocol to get what you need that takes some finagling to set up. You have to go through various channels to convince the bureaucracy that you're an acceptable contractor and that you have the right to get whatever. Once you have your paperwork set up, then you have some sort of daily/as needed check-in procedure.

Here's the important thing: after a while, the guards or the maintenance staff will get comfortable/tired of you and will let the required check-ins slide, or suggest that you don't need to do that. Unless you are specifically told not to bother anymore by someone with authority, don't stop checking in/signing in/calling as you were told to do. Because if someone changes shifts or there's an internal audit or the general security level goes up, either you will be holding the bag or security/maintenance will. You can play "dumb contractor" and say that lower-level security/maintenance peon said it was ok, but if you throw those folks under the bus, you will find that your daily/as needed check-ins will become painfully thorough. Also, being a jerk has long-term consequences for you as well as the project.

It is far better to have security/maintenance roll their eyes at you for being a stickler than to breeze along in your interactions with the facility until someone in charge finds out and you come to a screeching halt.

No comments: