Improving Your Writing

BACKGROUND:
Ten years ago, I started working as a clerk for DMD Medical Supplies. Six months ago, Liz, the human resources director, promoted me to office manager. I manage two employees: Jack and Ruth. My office provides secretarial support for the four members of the executive team. Two years ago, Liz had assigned Jack to support Ralph Alane and Jessica Hilo. Ruth was assigned to Samuel Daley and Frank Daley. The work flow was equally balanced. I've noticed that in the last three months Ruth has cut her breaks short to complete her work, complains of being tires, and at least twice a month requires overtime hours costing the company an additional $200 a month. In the last three weeks, Frank Daley has complained to me a few times about the poor quality of Ruth's work. On the other hand, over the last three months, Jack frequently seems to have little to do. He has begun coming in late a couple times a week and taking more than the allotted break times. What work he does have, however, is always professionally completed.
I must investigate to determine what is causing this change and how to improve the situation. Since nothing has changed in the personal lives of either Jack or Ruth, I conclude I must focus on the in-office work situation. I learn the following facts:
Samuel and Frank Daley share a part-time administrative assistant who works only 15 hours a week.
Ralph Alane and Jessica Hilo share a full-time administrative assistant.
Jessica Hilo has been on medical leave for the last four months, and Liz Jakowski isn't sure whether Jessica will be able to return to work.
Jessica's duties have been temporarily reassigned to Ralph and Frank.

I don't have the authority to change the work assignments of the two administrative assistants or the executive team, I clearly need to change my office assignments so that Jack and Ruth work regularly without requiring overtime.

SOME QUESTIONS I ASK MYSELF:
1. How long has this situation been going on?

2. Why did the problems begin when they did?

3. Am I able to solve the problem at its root cause or am I only able to manage the impact of the problem?

4. Is this a temporary or permanent problem?

5. How has the company been affected?

6. How have the employees been affected?

7. What's in my power to change? What must stay the same?

8. What are two or three ways to improve the efficiency of my office?

9. How much work, time, and money would be required to implement each solution?

10. Does each solution stop all the negative effects?

11. Are there any benefits to the change beyond stopping what is occurring?

12. How exactly would each change affect Jack, Ruth, and the executive team?

13. What would I have to do to make sure each change goes through as planned and to monitor the situation once the solution is in place?

I have to use the following information in the different sections:

SECTION 1-
Facts and figures that define the problem (the cause)

Details that show the impact of the problem (effects) on Jack, Ruth and the company.

SECTION 2
The steps needed to change the situation

Reason to implement each step, including the benefits to my employees, my supervisor, and the company.

Information about my role in the change.

So here is what I have so far

SECTION 1-
I've noticed in the last three months, about a month after Jessica Hilo went on medical leave that Ruth has been underachieving on her job performance. She has been going on shorter breaks to complete her work, is often tired and requires overtime hours at least twice a month. Ruth's work has also been poorly done in the last three weeks, according to Frank Daley's complaints. Another employee, Jack, has been late to work a couple times a week, takes longer breaks and often seems to have little to do. Although his work is always professional completed, something definitely needs to change. The effects of these problems on Ruth are that she is tired and stressed from working longer hours with shorter breaks. Ruth’s work ethic is also lacking which will show negatively in her work review. Jack is most likely not feeling useful at work as he has more down time and is showing up late for work a couple times a week. His overall attitude is declining. The company is spending an additional $200 a month on overtime hours at least twice a month for Ruth and these problems are affecting the overall work that is being done. This makes DMD Medical Supplies look unprofessional and because of poor work quality the executive team may lose their credibility.

SECTION 2 –
To change this situation in my opinion, Ruth and Jack need to start tracking the amount of time it takes to complete their work load on a day to day basis. Monitoring how much they get done will help in letting me know if they are both doing equal amounts of work and when I review the results I can distribute the work load evenly amongst both Jack and Ruth to ensure that everything is being done for the maximum benefit of DMD Medical Supplies. Overtime hours will be available to be shared between Jack and Ruth evenly, as I see fit, and this will save the company money. Mandatory, timed breaks will also solve the problem of employees taking longer, shorter, too few or too many breaks. I will check with all employees at break time to make sure they are giving themselves a break and for the appropriate amount of time. The benefits to these changes will be great for the employees, supervisor and the company. The employees will be more organized and feel as though they are being treated equally. Work ethic and quality will improve which will impress the supervisor and look great for the company as a whole. The company will also save money on less overtime hours and less time spent correcting others work.

Please let me know what you think and if you see any major corrections that I need to make. Thank you :)

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  1. Compare what you wrote above to what's below so that you catch ALL the large and small corrections I made.

    SECTION 1-
    I've noticed in the last three months, about a month after Jessica Hilo went on medical leave, that Ruth has been underachieving on her job performance. She has been going on shorter breaks to complete her work, is often tired, and requires overtime hours at least twice a month. Ruth's work has also been poorly done in the last three weeks, according to Frank Daley's complaints. Another employee, Jack, has been late to work a couple times a week, takes longer breaks, and often seems to have little to do. Although his work is always professionally completed, something definitely needs to change. The effects of these problems on Ruth are that she is tired and stressed from working longer hours with shorter breaks. Ruth’s work ethic is also lacking which will show negatively in her work review. Jack is most likely not feeling useful at work as he has more down time and is showing up late for work a couple times a week. His overall attitude is declining. The company is spending an additional $200 a month on overtime hours at least twice a month for Ruth, and these problems are affecting the overall work that is being done. This makes DMD Medical Supplies look unprofessional, and because of poor work quality, the executive team may lose their credibility.

    SECTION 2 –
    To change this situation, Ruth and Jack need to start tracking the amount of time it takes to complete their work load on a day-to-day basis. Monitoring how much they get done will help in letting me know if they are both doing equal amounts of work, and when I review the results I can distribute the work load evenly between Jack and Ruth to ensure that everything is being done for the maximum benefit of DMD Medical Supplies. Overtime hours will be available to be shared between Jack and Ruth evenly, as I see fit, and this will save the company money. Mandatory, timed breaks will also solve the problem of employees taking longer, shorter, too few or too many breaks. I will check with all employees at break time to make sure they are giving themselves a break and for the appropriate amount of time. The benefits to these changes will be greater efficiency for the employees, the supervisor, and the company. The employees will be more organized and will know that they are being treated equally. Work ethic and quality will improve which will impress the supervisor and look great for the company as a whole. The company will also save money on fewer overtime hours and less time spent correcting another person's work.

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