Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Fat cats and Dutch Railways

Centraal, originally uploaded by CharlesFred.

Fred has half term now, so no need to take the train at six o'clock in the morning to school. Yesterday was his first day in public and the swelling on his face had come down an awful lot the previous night, although he looks like he is recovering from two black eyes.

There is a bit of commotion going on in Holland at the moment regarding fat cat bonuses for the people who run the Dutch Railways. The directors all saw their bonuses rise significantly this year, despite the fact that the company missed its targets for running the trains on time. The targets were quite lax, allowing one in seven trains to be late, but despite extending the timetables by having trians wait longer at stations and extending journey times, they STILL missed their targets, only just, but they still missed.

On the other hand, the general staff had to miss out on a bonus of € 300 per person because they JUST missed the targets for customer satisfaction. So tremendous double standards, especially when one cosiders that the directors' bonues run into the tens of thousands of euros.

Apparently, a justification was put forward for the directors bonuses, pointing out that passenger numbers had increased, as if this had more to do with the directors than the fact that the roads in Holland are increasingly grinding to a halt as a result of a dramatic lack of investment in new or widened roads the past two decades.

In the meantime, there is a customer satisfaction questionnaire which was e-mailed to me by Dutch Railways, waiting to be completed. Quite a responsibility given that my answers may affect teh bonuses of thousands of employees!


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