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Apex employees get creative to keep jobs

Posted March 18, 2009

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— Municipalities all over the Triangle are looking for ways to cut costs without cutting jobs, and that has many trying something new.

Some employees in Apex are trying to be creative so they can keep working. They are swapping their jobs.

apex jobs Apex employees swapping jobs instead of losing them

Steve Adams, for example, started out as a building inspector but now spends a lot of his time outside doing electrical work.

"It was something I was not very familiar with, but I am now," he said.

Slowed construction because of the slumping economy left the Town of Apex with too many inspectors and not enough buildings.

Adams had only been here for seven months.

"Usually, the last one in is the first one out, I suppose," he said.

But instead of cutting his job and others', he got trained to do another one.

"I was glad to work somewhere that was flexible and innovative enough to look at the skill sets of people they have in house to see if they can use them somewhere else," Adams said.

Annette O'Briant, an administrative assistant working for town inspectors for 14 years. Now, she works for both the planning department and the purchasing department. In a few months, she's headed to work at the police department.

Apex town leaders say they had to shave more than $750,000 in current operating expenses. They were determined to do that without shaving any essential services or jobs.

"The last thing that anyone wants to do is exacerbate the layoff problem," Apex Town Manager Bruce Radford said. "We were going to try to find a way to save our people."

That's welcome news for employees like Adams, who says he's up for whatever.

"I'll go where they need me," he said, "and be glad to be on the roster."


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  • Americanpatriot Mar 19, 2009

    I know a way to save money...stop unnecessary construction projects like the villages of apex and the Peakway.

    Plus,the man that has just started to work in electric repair has me worried. How do i know he's competent?

  • kal Mar 19, 2009

    Makes sense to me!

  • something2say Mar 18, 2009

    Glad to see the Town of Apex trying to save employees in a flexible kind of way! It is also great that people there are willing to spread their wings. It will serve them well in the future, more experience to add to a resume and all! I hope Gov takes note and helps her state staff figure out ways to be more productive and creative rather than cutting people out of jobs!

  • sskt95 Mar 18, 2009

    I know Steve personally, he does have a great attitude. But that is not him in the photo.

  • NCishome Mar 18, 2009

    My first job - I swept the sidewalk while my 4 "good friends" all were inside stocking selfs. We were in high school looking for our first job. 3 of us got hired. I was the only one to stay with the company for 5 years.

    The last line of the position read "and any other duties". They were sad to see me leave, I worked for some of their hardest managers in retail. Today (some 30 years later) I look back and they all were just a part of the team that taught me about "other duties". As my Grandfather would say "if you are going to dig a ditch, make it the best d@#m ditch"

  • fritobandito Mar 18, 2009

    I am an Assistant Mgr with the co I work for and there have been many times I sweep the floor, run the register and yes, clean the restrooms. I am a product of the '70's where you did what you were told and where to work when the need arose. If you had any issues with the boss, the answer could usually be found in the unemployment line. Kudos Mr Adams, you are not alone....

  • UNCfuturealumi Mar 18, 2009

    Young Man I pray you are the last man on the roster with that great All American attitude. I can read your story and know you came from good stock. I am unemployed, but when I worked I wanted to be the person that turned the lights on at the beginning of the day and turn them off in the afternoon. Keep that way of thinking and you will be A-OK...

  • Red Mar 18, 2009

    I'm sure accounting and payroll are all screaming about cost centers and job codes.

  • Rolling Along Mar 18, 2009

    Same way our company operates. Even the COO takes his turn cleaning the Mens room.

  • Fun Mar 18, 2009

    Mr. Adams is exactly right...great attitude...it's the American spirit...or was/is until unions get involved...fully backed by the democrats I might add. Great job Mr. Adams. You make me want to move to Apex and outta Raleigh aka Meekerville!