Monday, August 29, 2005

life lesson: how to calculate overtime pay

You'd think overtime pay would be easy to calculate, but no. I received about W386,000 overtime for the month of July-- this was for 16 days' teaching (four 4-day weeks). I divided by 16 and saw I was getting about W24,125 per day (about $24, US). For the month of August, I taught 13 days on exactly the same schedule. You'd think my overtime pay would be:

24,125 x 13 = W313,625 for the month.

What do you think? Think I'll be getting that amount?

Ho ho! You guessed it, boys and girls! The answer is NO! Instead, it'll be W220,000-- i.e., about W90,000 ($90) less than what I was expecting! Woo-hoo!

"How is this possible?" I hear you gasp. Easy! Calculate overtime by substracting 72 hours from the total number of hours worked, no matter how many hours you've actually worked!

Think of it this way: I'm your boss, and I put you on a weekly ration of pizza-- a week's worth of pizza given to you every Monday. You decide how to divvy the ration up daily. Sometimes your pizza ration is large; sometimes it's small. Them's the breaks.

Here's the thing: Let's say I also demand a tribute of X grams of pizza, no matter how big or small your ration is. The end result? Some weeks you're left with a bunch of pizza; some weeks you get diddly. Instead of demanding a percentage, I'm taking the same raw amount from you every time.

Maybe you're rolling in money and you don't give a fuck, but for those of us who have to watch every won, this sort of tricky bullshit is upsetting, to say the least.

Let's put it another way: I worked 16 days in July and got W386,000 overtime. I worked 13 days (on the same schedule) in August and will get W220,000. There's a 19% reduction in days worked, from 16 to 13. But note that there's a 43% reduction in overtime pay, from W386,000 to W220,000.

The process was explained to me step by step. Twice. Once I finally understood how I was being shafted, there was little to do but nod. Thank you, Smoo!

Funny-- the lady turned to me after her second run-through of the process and said, "You know... you should think about getting private work."

I enjoy what I do at Smoo, but things like this put a huge damper on the enjoyment. All of us teachers are already being paid less than we're worth. To be screwed over even more is just a reminder of what the university really thinks of our efforts. One of our colleagues has decided to move into a cramped little hasuk-jip to save money. I won't be doing the same since I simply have too much crap, but I can understand where she's coming from.


1 comment:

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