We have a fantastic front desk receptionist/ switchboard operator. She is “chained” to her desk in a stand alone position in the foyer of our building doing a very busy job with long hours and often working extra. Every time she needs to take a bathroom break, she feels she has to “beg” for cover. Approx. 30 staff (all staff under management level) are designated to provide lunch or bathroom break cover for her but they often forget, and openly resent the fact that they’re being taken away from their jobs even though its in their job description to do so. Making a hospital/ dentist appointment; being poorly (very rare), taking a days holiday at the last minute – are all impossible situations for her and she is on the point of leaving.

The company will not hire a 2nd receptionist. Directors encourage staff to be proud of covering reception, as a front facing important role, but the same mindset exists – that it’s a “nuisance” job.

It’s possible that we could divert the switchboard to another extension for bathroom breaks, but visitors may still need access.

Are any companies in a similar position?

Any ideas to solve this problem??

Linda Parrott

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