The factor missing from the actual emails is, of course, honesty. Let's not forget Rule No. 1 -- they're lying. Sure, it often is because the law firm that hired them is lying, and so the agency has to lie to cover for the law firm, but they're still lying. The end of my most recent project is, I think, illustrative. We got an email from the firm Monday afternoon urging us to finish the available batches by the end of the day Monday, feel free to stay as late as you like to accomplish that, and don't worry, we have more data to upload overnight. Might not have been completely true. and it forced the agency to start lying. We got an email at about 8 pm letting us know that the agency had not heard from the firm about whether we were employed the next day, but they assured us that we would get definitive word by 10 p.m. Monday. Yeah, at about 10:30 pm Monday, we got this:
As of now, the Firm still is not certain if they need you to report tomorrow. Please check your email again in the morning.Sorry for the inconvenience. Please confirm receipt. Thank you.Did I ask whether we had more information? Oh, hell yeah. Did I get a good answer? Fuck no. I sent an email trying to get an answer and got deflected yet again:
We have not received definitive word from [the firm] whether they will need you to report later today.So, in the morning, of course we got more information, right? Um, no. At about 1:30 pm, we got this:
Thank you for checking in. We’ll be in touch as soon as we have further information.
[The firm] has confirmed that there is no further work. Many thanks to you all for your help in completing the [firm's] review within their deadline. The Firm is most appreciative as well. If you left personal items there, let us know. Also, please return the [firm's] key fob to [the agency] and we’ll get it back to [the firm].So what are the emails I would have liked to see? They would go something like this. The first one would have read along these lines:
As of now, the Firm is pretty sure they're going to fuck you and end the project early, but they really don't want to tell you that just yet. They are afraid you might jump to another project and that they might still need you. Please accept the fact that you are unemployed as of now. Sorry for the inconvenience. Please let us know whether you are filing for unemployment benefits.Next, of course, I would like to get this email:
The firm is still lying to us about whether they intend to bring you back tomorrow, even though it is after 11 pm and of course they already know whether there is work for you. We're really glad you're still on the hook, but you really are kidding yourselves. No way in hell do you have a job tomorrow, but no one has confirmed that yet, so hang tight.And then we would get this:
Yeah, the firm has acknowledged what you have known for at least a day: You're fucked. No more work, don't let the screen door slap you in the ass on the way out and, oh by the way, yes you need to come by the agency office and drop off the key card the firm gave you or else we will charge you a bunch of money for it. We don't care how far you live from here.Naturally, I don't expect to ever receive this kind of honesty. After all, that would violate Rule No. 1.