I just had a chat with a friend early this morning and found out that a certain company which started operations here in the Philippines1 recently had a major Human Resources blunder. The company in question is Teradata Corp., the largest company solely focused on Enterprise Data Warehousing and Enterprise Analytics. It lends its services to big multinational and local companies such as 3m, Air Canada, Coca-Cola, Smart Communications, Ace Hardware and etc2. Teradata Corp. recently began its operations here in the Philippines around the year 2008 and started actively hiring specialized technical professionals with experience in data warehouse management towards the end of the year 2009. I had a lot of friends (also in the field of Database Management) who transferred to this company, thus explains how I stumbled upon this juicy story.
The story goes like this: A human resources employee inadvertently sent an email (sometime during the last working days of April 2011) with an attached MS Excel file containing valuable employee information, which included the salary of all Philippine based employees, to everyone in the company. That being the case, employees were obviously not happy seeing the salaries of other people who in their minds didn’t deserve salaries that were double or even triple that of their own. The general deduction Teradata employees derived from seeing the excel file was that only pretty women had higher pay, regardless of their years of experience or how fit their skill set is in relation to the job. You can actually read some posts made by Teradata employees, assuming they are who they claim to be, blowing off steam in the local Philippine job forums i.e. pinoyexchange (although the administrator already deleted some of the post at the behest of Teradata).
The HR employee who executed the blunder was fired. She didn’t even bother setting the password protection option on the MS Excel file attachment. Such sloppiness should not be tolerated in the workplace especially in a department where confidential information is being used on a day to day basis. I totally understand the obvious decision of the company to fire the inept employee.
Personally, I understand the anger and frustration experienced by some of these Teradata employees. But in all honesty, they should not blame the company but rather they should blame themselves. Before joining any company everyone has the right to bargain for a higher salary aka “Salary Haggling”. They obviously did poorly in this area and although pretty or handsome people obviously have an advantage, it doesn’t automatically mean that they can get a higher salary with just a wink of an eye or flashing a flirtatious smile (they probably had to do several more winks and smiles ).
3 Friend who does not wish to be named because they do not wish to lose their jobs (using plural pronouns to avoid revealing gender)