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'Nepotism'-where do you stand?

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  • #16
    Originally posted by manofire2 View Post
    Who picks the questions?
    Proffesional test writers who study the job and take surveys from members of that rank. And then they also must follow Civil Service commssion rules and laws.
    Who sets the parameters?
    See above.
    The bottom line is, a system is fair and equitable if I get on, if I don't then it is nepotism, cronyism, sexism, affirmative action, etc.,etc.,etc.
    Really?
    If you go by exam scores, how do you settle ties?
    By rules estabished by Civil Service law using un-biased, essentially random numbers as in a certain number of everyones social security number and the last number of the year of the date of the exam....etc.

    Which scores higher physical or scolastic marks?
    Each gets a 50% 50% weight.

    I agree that hiring should be a nameless and faceless procedure, but you will never totally eliminate criticism and in the minds of those who don't get hired, unfairness.
    The goal isn't to elminate criticism, that isn't the duty of the civil service system. They are to produce a list for a job title based on who demonstrated in standardized exams the greater merit and fitness for said job...period. No system is perfect, however ours is by far contains the least bias and has shown to produce no more F*ck-ups than patrongage only we don't have to worry about that "who ya know" baggage.

    FTM-PTB

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    • #17
      In FDNY you're not guaranteed a job if your father died in the line of duty for the city. You DO get 5 legacy points which if added to the 5 residency points is HUGE.

      I agree with the above post about city residency points. I don't believe in them. If a guy from out of state scores a 100% and a New Yorker scores a 96 he gets hired first because he gets 5 points. I do think that you should break ties with residency. If an out of stater and a New Yorker get the same score, the resident should get hiring preference.

      The time stamping is getting tricky with the current age of internet applications. What happens if a person applies on the internet at the same time a person hands his in in person? What about time delays if the server is down and so on.

      Comment


      • #18
        Originally posted by FFFRED View Post
        I'm not sure what that has to do with Nepotism.

        FTM-PTB
        Nothing. It was just a question, as someone in an earlier post mentioned something along those lines.
        "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

        Comment


        • #19
          Originally posted by Bones42 View Post
          Nothing. It was just a question, as someone in an earlier post mentioned something along those lines.

          OK yes, if your father should become a LODD you can use some points on an exam for a uniformed job title.

          FTM-PTB

          Comment


          • #20
            If you can come up with test procedures which are totally objective, with no subjective marking and the applications were totally blind(where you score the application with no knowledge of the person), I might be more in agreement. The problem is that I have seen many of the tests. Most are totally subjective and open to interpretation. On one test for instance, one of the questions asked was what kind of vehicle do you prefer. How this has any bearing on who gets hired I have no idea. The theory is that in a random survey, existing Firefighters would be most likely to answer in a certain way so you get more points if you think that way.

            Hiring in this way is much like targetted selection promotion procedures. Great if your face fits the target.

            You say that you grade physical and scholastic marks 50-50. If I score 90 on my scholastic and 80 on my physical, you score 80 on your scholastic and 90 on your physical, who gets hired?

            Don't get me wrong, I favour merit based hiring, I am only saying there is not a perfect system out there. If there is I have yet to be shown it.

            Comment


            • #21
              Originally posted by manofire2 View Post
              If you can come up with test procedures which are totally objective, with no subjective marking and the applications were totally blind(where you score the application with no knowledge of the person), I might be more in agreement.
              We have that. How else does our Dept of Personel (DCAS) grade 20,000+ exams?

              The problem is that I have seen many of the tests. Most are totally subjective and open to interpretation. On one test for instance, one of the questions asked was what kind of vehicle do you prefer. How this has any bearing on who gets hired I have no idea. The theory is that in a random survey, existing Firefighters would be most likely to answer in a certain way so you get more points if you think that way.
              What cities was this exam given in? I can tell you this exam you speak about isn't a civil service exam and has nothing to do with this conversation.

              Hiring in this way is much like targetted selection promotion procedures. Great if your face fits the target.
              Once again, that is not what a civil service exam is there to measure. The Civil service exam askes questions that a person with a high-school education could answer, problem solving, reading comprehension...etc.

              You say that you grade physical and scholastic marks 50-50. If I score 90 on my scholastic and 80 on my physical, you score 80 on your scholastic and 90 on your physical, who gets hired?
              You need to re-read what has alreadly been written above. There are legal and essentially unbiased tie breakers such as the 4th to last number of your Social Security number and such. It is all set forth in the law and has worked for decades.

              Don't get me wrong, I favour merit based hiring, I am only saying there is not a perfect system out there. If there is I have yet to be shown it.
              No system is perfect...however I don't think you really know what a civil service merit and fitness based exam is all about.

              The Civil service system while it has its pros and cons, eliminates the patronage and subjectivity of humans in the hiring and selection process.

              FTM-PTB

              Comment


              • #22
                Duplicate Post.....oooops
                Last edited by FFFRED; 01-16-2007, 06:17 PM.

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                • #23
                  Duplicate Post.....
                  Last edited by FFFRED; 01-16-2007, 06:17 PM. Reason: Duplicate

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                  • #24
                    Go on the internet and you can get examples of sample test questions from civil service exams. Here is an example from the City of St. Paul, firefighter exam..

                    You are attending a playoff game for your university basketball team, the Tigers. They are playing the Elks. As you go to get a hot-dog, you accidentally bump into an Elks fan. Even though you apologize, he turns to you and yells: "What's the matter with you, you idiot? You better look where you're going, you stupid Tiger fan. Where'd you get that stupid hat? All you stupid Tiger fans are wearing those stupid hats. Those hats are stupid and you're stupid!"

                    You do not feel threatened by the man, but you think he is irritating. Of the following, which would you be most likely to say?

                    Choose 3 answers.

                    "You're the one who's acting stupid here."
                    "Excuse me. I'm going back to my seat now."
                    "Like I said, I'm sorry I bumped into you."
                    "Move away from me please."
                    "I'm just here to have fun at the game."
                    "Security can kick you out of here for bothering people."
                    "Why don't we just go back to our seats and enjoy the game."
                    "Hey man, let's forget the insults."
                    "No wonder everyone thinks Elks fans are a bunch of hot-heads."

                    Here is another gem.

                    A class is attending a science fair at which there are several new scientific inventions. As the children walk past the displays, one of the students, Joseph, talks to the other students about topics not related to the science fair. When he is not talking, he is watching all the people around him. Based on the information in this passage, what do you think about Joseph's behavior?

                    He is balancing his need to socialize with the need to let other students enjoy the science fair.
                    He is lacking self-control because he does not like the science fair.
                    He seems to lack a natural curiosity and appreciation for learning about new things.
                    He only feels understood if he is talking about himself.

                    Now I know the people making up these tests have degrees up the ying yang and get paid a lot of money to come up with these, but please explain to me how these examples can possibly result in hiring the best person for the job.

                    Comment


                    • #25
                      Originally posted by manofire2 View Post
                      Go on the internet and you can get examples of sample test questions from civil service exams. Here is an example from the City of St. Paul, firefighter exam..

                      You are attending a playoff game for your university basketball team, the Tigers. They are playing the Elks. As you go to get a hot-dog, you accidentally bump into an Elks fan. Even though you apologize, he turns to you and yells: "What's the matter with you, you idiot? You better look where you're going, you stupid Tiger fan. Where'd you get that stupid hat? All you stupid Tiger fans are wearing those stupid hats. Those hats are stupid and you're stupid!"

                      You do not feel threatened by the man, but you think he is irritating. Of the following, which would you be most likely to say?

                      Choose 3 answers.

                      "You're the one who's acting stupid here."
                      "Excuse me. I'm going back to my seat now."
                      "Like I said, I'm sorry I bumped into you."
                      "Move away from me please."
                      "I'm just here to have fun at the game."
                      "Security can kick you out of here for bothering people."
                      "Why don't we just go back to our seats and enjoy the game."
                      "Hey man, let's forget the insults."
                      "No wonder everyone thinks Elks fans are a bunch of hot-heads."

                      Here is another gem.

                      A class is attending a science fair at which there are several new scientific inventions. As the children walk past the displays, one of the students, Joseph, talks to the other students about topics not related to the science fair. When he is not talking, he is watching all the people around him. Based on the information in this passage, what do you think about Joseph's behavior?

                      He is balancing his need to socialize with the need to let other students enjoy the science fair.
                      He is lacking self-control because he does not like the science fair.
                      He seems to lack a natural curiosity and appreciation for learning about new things.
                      He only feels understood if he is talking about himself.

                      Now I know the people making up these tests have degrees up the ying yang and get paid a lot of money to come up with these, but please explain to me how these examples can possibly result in hiring the best person for the job.
                      Those are a prime example of an exam which doesn't conform to the civil service laws and would be challenged if they were even used. I'm sorry your experience has been so poor but that is not a text book civil service exam question...that is an exam written to produce a certain result or confuse those who would seek to challenge its validity.

                      You are talking about a completely different animal. Just because a city offers an exam doesn't mean it falls under civil service law and seeks to find the most quailifed by merit and fitness. Those questions obviously come from an exam which is far from unbiased and unamibiguous.

                      FTM-PTB

                      Comment


                      • #26
                        These exams are designed to elicit a control response which in their theory is the response which in their survey best represents the response given by a group of firefighters chosen to complete the survey. The fly in the ointment is that the people putting the survey responses together can pick and choose who they want to take part, thereby producing the desired result.

                        In essence they are utilized to produce a statistical analysis of the views of the group they wish to emulate. As Mark Twain said "There are 3 kinds of lies: lies, damn lies and, statistics."

                        Again if you have an exam that is completely objective, that there are no subjective qestions and where the results are not subject to: opinion, speculation or, any preconceived notion of personality patterning, then I could buy into your concept. As yet I haven't seen any entrance test that is 100% objective and unless it is 100% objective it is subject to manipulation, just like targetted selection promotions.

                        Comment


                        • #27
                          Originally posted by manofire2 View Post
                          These exams are designed to elicit a control response which in their theory is the response which in their survey best represents the response given by a group of firefighters chosen to complete the survey. The fly in the ointment is that the people putting the survey responses together can pick and choose who they want to take part, thereby producing the desired result.

                          In essence they are utilized to produce a statistical analysis of the views of the group they wish to emulate. As Mark Twain said "There are 3 kinds of lies: lies, damn lies and, statistics."

                          Again if you have an exam that is completely objective, that there are no subjective qestions and where the results are not subject to: opinion, speculation or, any preconceived notion of personality patterning, then I could buy into your concept. As yet I haven't seen any entrance test that is 100% objective and unless it is 100% objective it is subject to manipulation, just like targetted selection promotions.
                          First there is no 100% error proof method in doing anything....

                          So your position is that since there is no 100% objective written exam...(Not sure how a competitive written exam that test High School level concepts is biased) that you'd rather stick with a patronage based system even though it leaves a much larger oportunity for personal bias and Civil service exams are viewed as an improvement over the old patronage system which you apparently are so beholden too? Is my impression of your view correct and how could one reasonably justify this?

                          Furthermore, I'm not sure how this disscussion related to nepotism.

                          As for you not having seen a 100% objective exam...the closest thing to it must be the written entrance exam to the FDNY. It is certainly not even close in respects to a selective hiring process. Testing for basic High School level cognative abilities cannot be compared to a Chief picking and choosing his new probies from a list of canidates who sat through BS interviews.

                          FTM-PTB
                          Last edited by FFFRED; 01-20-2007, 01:16 PM.

                          Comment


                          • #28
                            No you don't read me correctly, I have always maintained that the best method of hiring is by objective based testing with points for work experience, etc. My argument is that no matter what system used it has to be: objective, equal and, blind. Hiring should not be influenced by gender, race, religion, who you know or who you are related to. Any testing that is designed to elicit personality paterns is as flawed as hiring due to who your father or uncle is.

                            Twenty seven years of experience tells me that genetics doesn't mean you will be better or worse as a firefighter, I have seen top notch second or third generation FF's as well as sons who don't cut it(in my opinion). I have also seen guys with degrees who don't have the right stuff and those who fit right in.

                            Being the son or daughter of a firefighter should not give you a free ride, nor should it make you ineligible.

                            Comment


                            • #29
                              Originally posted by manofire2 View Post
                              Being the son or daughter of a firefighter should not give you a free ride, nor should it make you ineligible.
                              Perhaps you have a reading disability...we were speaking of a few credits for children of LODDs on the job (in my city, anyhow). They still have to pass with a reasonable mark. I don't call loosing your father and getting a few points credit a "free ride"! Sounds like the garbage that falls out of our Billionaire Mayors mouth.

                              Think before you speak.

                              FTM-PTB

                              Comment


                              • #30
                                I would say nepotism is fine as long as the job gets done. The testing process should be the same for all with no preference given for a relative. Meaning they get on the job as anyone else would. I would however, agree that sons or daughters of a fallen FF should get some form of preference points, after passing all other related tests.

                                As for points, I noticed a post from the first page where they disagreed with residency points and veterans points. Again assess the points after all other testing but, I agree with those points.

                                Residency...you know the city, you know what to expect and have established roots. You'll tend to stick around.

                                Veterans...Hell yes...the fire service is a paramilitary service. You definately get discipline in the service, know how a chain of command works, know not to question an officer. I have seen too many FF come on straight from tech school and think they know everything, or ask "why are we doing this" and so forth.

                                Anyway...sorry little tangent there...but yes nepotism is fine as long as there is no favoritism or preference given over other qualified candidates.
                                The thoughts and opinions posted here are mine and mine alone and do not reflect the thoughts and or views of city or dept affiliation.

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