There’s nothing quite like a brand new laptop in Apple packaging. So when I opened the box of my new Mac for the first time, I paused for a second to relish the experience, and I swear I heard a chorus of Angels sing.
I’d put off buying a new computer for weeks because I knew it’d be fraught with challenges; software not working on the new version; peripherals not connecting and operating as they have been doing for years; and then there’s the learning curve of a new keyboard layout or touch-pad commands.
But the “I’m thinking give me a moment” spinning rainbow wheel of death on my old Mac was fast becoming my new best friend, so I finally bit the bullet and invested in a new Mac. I braced myself for the occasion, and bought it on a Saturday, so that I had another day to do battle with the software and peripherals – but that wasn’t enough.
I was having sleepless nights trying to create solutions for my “unable to load software” and “unable to print” error messages. So I decided to take a few “Techernity” days leave from work — to get to grips with my new arrival.
Time Off Request
We live in a technology-reliant environment, so it seems logical to expect a company to allow a couple of days off each year to deal with technology-related challenges in the home environment. But when I tried to submit my day-off request – the closest approximate was a Sick Day or a Mental Health Day … now granted, my new computer was driving me mad and I was sick of dealing with it, but I didn’t think I could swing either of those.
I did consider putting in a Maternity leave request, but as I only needed a couple of days to deal with my new baby; 12 weeks off seemed a little excessive – and I wasn’t sure how new-arrival snapshots of my keyboard would go down after my return to work. So I reluctantly had to settle for the “vacation time” option.
Time for a new Employment Law
Is it too much to ask that in the Economic Employment Department (EED) take into account our reliance on technology, and pass a law to allow full-time workers to take “Techernity Leave” when they purchase a new piece of technology?
A new computer has the potential of being a “bundle of joy”, but when your software bundle doesn’t play-nice with the others within it’s reach, it’s time to get serious about focusing all your love and attention on it until it’s fully integrated into the new household. Techernity Leave is an ideal way to take some time to bond with your new charge, and it allows you to return to work when you’re emotionally ready.
Techernity – not just for computers
While we’re on the subject .. I don’t think Techernity Leave should be limited to a computer purchase, as other pieces of technology can be just as challenging.
I recently bought an Apple TV device, and needed to sign up for a VPN network so that I could access specific content.
That process took a few evenings after work to deal with, and entailed scrolling through tech forums into the wee small hours of the morning, to solve my issue of being bumped off the network.
So, EDD, if you’re reading, here’s some recommendations I’d like you to take under advisement:
- New Computer – 5 days allowance (Recommendation to optimize your time: buy the computer on a Friday night after work, so that you have a full 9 days to integrate your new arrival into your schedule)
- New Tablet (ipad etc.) – 3 days allowance
- New Phone
- Upgraded version of the same make – 1 day allowance
- New brand – 2 days allowance
These new guidelines would allow the workforce to return to work, with the peace of mind that there isn’t an errant piece of technology waiting for them when then get home.
Of course, another alternative would be Tech Day-Care or a Tech Sitter. Save yourself the headache of dealing with your own bundle of mischief – and drop your device off at the nearest geek zone, or call in the Tech-O-pair.