By continuing your visit to this site, you accept the use of cookies. These ensure the smooth running of our services. Learn more.

02 April 2011

When prayer is used as an excuse to skive off

JEDDAH: Some private company employees use the prayer time as an excuse to avoid work. Some companies allow 10 minutes for each prayer, while others allocate 15 minutes.

Employees use more than their allocated time to skive off work. In some government departments, employees simply leave work and go home when the call for Dhuhr prayer starts without bothering to come back after the prayer break to complete the remaining hours.

Employees are often accused of wasting too much time chatting outside their offices during prayer time. Others gather outdoors to smoke. Some employees try to use this time to go out and finish personal errands.

Many companies have created prayer rooms inside the workplace to prevent employees from ditching work.

Fakhry Al-Asady, human resources manager at a private company in Jeddah, thinks that each company should have its own allocated space for prayer.

He said his company faced the problem of employees leaving work too early using prayer as an excuse. “We solved this problem, which occurs around Dhuhr time, by arranging shifts. The first shift starts from 8 a.m. and ends at 12:30 p.m.”

He said the problem starts during the second shift, which takes place between 4:30 p.m. and 8:30 p.m.

He said some employees come to work at 5 p.m. using prayer as an excuse. “When it comes close to home time, they leave at 8:00, using Isha prayer as an excuse,” he added.

He said the company warned employees to either pray inside their offices or at a mosque close to work.

Al-Asady said the warning worked and there is now less time wasted. He said they did not deduct any salary from employees because prayer is a sensitive issue.

Essam Attalah, an art director at a multinational company in Jeddah, said people who use prayer as a reason to spend long periods of time away from their desks are more than likely not at the mosque.

He added that praying in a mosque takes 10 minutes or even less. “I wish employees would stop using prayer as an excuse because worship is something holy,” Attalah said.

“In our company we came up with a system that forces all those who want to pray to stay in a local area specified by the company. There are few minutes between the adhan (the call for prayer) and the actual prayer, enough time for them to prepare. The whole process does not take longer than 12 minutes.”

Zeyad Allam, a private company employee, said he hates it when people use prayer as an excuse.

“When I was in a superstore in Jeddah, the cashiers disappeared for half an hour, leaving a long line of people waiting for them. The employees used prayer time as an excuse to go behind the store and smoke,” said Allam.

“It got to a point when the store was calling for the employees by name on the intercom. Ten minutes after all mosques finished conducting prayers, the cashiers showed up. This created a lot of anger among people who were still queuing.”  




08:41 Posted in Saudi Arabia | Permalink | Comments (0) |  Facebook |

The comments are closed.