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Thread: What about Lab Certification?

  1. #51
    OptiBoard Apprentice Slugathor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FullCircle View Post
    Surface side should be closing at 8. Heck, we close it at 8:15, finish at 8:30.

    Learn to change base curves, cut low curves on a 113 and utilize Central Lab if you can't handle it. Yes, later in the evening jobs are annoying. But they don't happen every day and it is money coming in. Money that pays for you to be there to begin with.

    Last I checked, R&P still bought you 3hrs, making that a next day job anyway.

    Yes, there are stumbling blocks in terms of dealing with retail. But we all work on the same team. And honestly, without them, you don't have a gig.

    You've been there 8 months if I recall from one of your posts. You, as far as I'm concerned are still as green as they come. you are currently getting some of the best job training available in optics FOR FREE. If you hang around long enough and learn enough to pass your ABO, LC PAYS YOU FOR IT. I'm not seeing what there is to whine about.

    Lab Techs are a dime a dozen. But the good ones are worth their weight in gold. Which one do you want to be?
    I am guessing you work or worked for them before and got lucky and worked in a store where everyone got along.

    -I never trained on the CDs, my lab manager told me to say I did QIP when doing the written LC cert test.

    -I was never given training on the job period, I had to watch the older guys very carefully when they worked with me in the morning, so when I was alone from 4-9 during our busiest period, I could at least attempt (I admit I went through several breakages to get some of the machines right).

    -When I try and tell retail a order is better of going to central lab, I get worked on pretty hard. Really unfair to assume a guy like me can do the job of a 5+ year pro (I show the jobs to my lab manager who has 6+ year himself and even he says they are definitely C/L jobs and some will prolly be sent back as undoable).

    -I work alone from 3-9, even on saturdays, our busiest day.

    -You ever been alone during a busy period when the Edger and Waxer breaks, cannot get hold of any of the experienced techs on the phone, with the GM breathing down your neck saying "time is money!" ?

    -LC paying for it? I saw my lab manager fax my promotion to prod. tech II. It is now 3 months and my paycheck still reads eyewear consultant with the corisponding pay . I have spent over 200 dollars on antifreeze for the chiller and 70% alcohol from walgreens because we can't afford to get enough 99% isoprophol.

    Look man, I don't mean to be a whiner, it is just that I think what I have been through is a bit over the top. I am thankful that there is a company that will "train" you even if you only have your GED. I am also glad I am getting "experience," even if it is through the worst means possible. I just wish they made your stay a little bit more pleasant :shiner:.

  2. #52
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    -I never trained on the CDs, my lab manager told me to say I did QIP when doing the written LC cert test
    you should be doing the Earn As you Learn Program and have completed the QMP program.

    I was never given training on the job period, I had to watch the older guys very carefully when they worked with me in the morning, so when I was alone from 4-9 during our busiest period, I could at least attempt (I admit I went through several breakages to get some of the machines right).
    Sooo...why are you alone during the busiest time? hope you're not doing something silly like punching jobs early so the RQC doesn't question why your RWP is in the toilet. Punching jobs early is still a fireable offense.

    When I try and tell retail a order is better of going to central lab, I get worked on pretty hard. Really unfair to assume a guy like me can do the job of a 5+ year pro (I show the jobs to my lab manager who has 6+ year himself and even he says they are definitely C/L jobs and some will prolly be sent back as undoable
    Yeah. See, there's guidelines. Its in the computer. Print them up. There's no reason that retail can force your hand if is in black and white.

    I work alone from 3-9, even on saturdays, our busiest day.
    And this still sounds fishy. You must not be THAT busy of a store if there isn't at least 2 people on staff.

    You ever been alone during a busy period when the Edger and Waxer breaks, cannot get hold of any of the experienced techs on the phone, with the GM breathing down your neck saying "time is money!"
    1. you call the repair center. # should be on a sticker on the phone.
    2. you call your RQC and let them know that machinery is down.
    3. you call your LM or Lead Tech.
    4. If you can't fix it, call another store and either get help or make arrangements for shuttle work until it can be fixed.

    I've had the curing unit catch fire and a 5056 blow a fuse and seize up at another store that I filled in at.

    -LC paying for it? I saw my lab manager fax my promotion to prod. tech II. It is now 3 months and my paycheck still reads eyewear consultant with the corisponding pay . I have spent over 200 dollars on antifreeze for the chiller and 70% alcohol from walgreens because we can't afford to get enough 99% isoprophol
    Who did they fax it to? RQC has to approve it before AR can do anything. Its your LM's job to follow up. Or the Lead Tech, actually. You spent money? Why? CP gets put through 1ce a month with a back up half way. There is no reason to not be able to purchase the bare neccessities to make eyewear. And $200 for coolant? Fill out a T & E form and get reimbursed. And how much coolant can that thing really hold? And yes, they reimburse you for the ABO test if you pass.

  3. #53
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    BTW, are you Inspector Certified? If not, you can't be checking out jobs.

  4. #54
    OptiBoard Apprentice Slugathor's Avatar
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    Uh, for some reason, my answers became apart of your quotes, dunno how to fix that.



    I have never heard of the program, I will ask my LM about that.


    I have told the GM multiple times that I need help during certain times. I even posted a schedule on the door to her office to help her set up the official schedule. Time and time again she lets retail and lab guys go home before 3pm because it's "not that busy." Every freakin time it gets busy and she is in a mad dash to call people back. Rarely, once in a blue moon, I might get emergency help from a store a couple miles away, but this is really rare.


    For your information, I don't have time to be silly. All I can do is what I can do to the best of my ability. I don't clock out orders early, I don't hide breakages (although I have caught a lab trainee doing both).


    I am going to ask my LM about this. If I do find stuff I am going to nail it to the back entrance and to the entrance between the lab and retail side.


    Part of this is answered above. You have no idea how much of a nazi my GM is. I know for sure we make goal every other week ( I know for a fact it is so hard to make goal every week. You make goal on monday, then they up the goal on tuesday by 3 grand, wthhhhh? ). We have made our past two monthly goals for sure, not sure before that. I will have to check the past reports when I go to work tommorrow. I do know for a fact that our during our last corporate visit (my guess is the RQC), they said we were top 3 in the region, behind pleasanton and some other store.



    I wish it was that simple, it took them 3 months to replace our lab printer. We even ran out of paper for a week and had to use the really really expensive eyemed paper (which i hear is like a couple dollars a piece).


    That sux. I guess its good in a sense when you have to fix it yourself, you eventually learn how to fix it and know its tendencies. Like my waxer as a example, it was bought in 1987, I had to replace a plastic tube inside it that had never been replaced (ya know the thin blue one that comes out? I dunno if there are different waxers). I have to use gloves (you got the ones that make your hands smell like ***?) though, there is so much rust on it, i will get tetanus from just looking at it.


    All I remember was my LM faxing some form with a carbon copy. I am going to ask him about it. The 200$ was not for just the coolant, but for the alcohol too. I checked the inventory listing and those alcohol jugs cost almost freakin 50 bucks! And yes, the Coolant thing can hold a lot. When I first started, my first job was to get all the air bubbles out of that coolant system. I dont know if all the coolant machines are the same, but to completely refill mine, you have to turn it on and put the tube in the air to let the bubbles come up and pop like a volcano, right in your face:shiner:.

  5. #55
    OptiBoard Apprentice Slugathor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FullCircle View Post
    BTW, are you Inspector Certified? If not, you can't be checking out jobs.

    No, I have passed the written part. Havent taken the inspection part yet (RQC couldnt keep us for more then 4 hours for the test, he had over 5 ppl and only one set of glasses for that part of the test. Will take that part probably in 2 weeks).

    I know I shouldn't be doing it. Do I want to do it? No. I have to because my GM and LM are making me do it.

  6. #56
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    those alcohol jugs cost almost freakin 50 bucks
    *sigh* that price is for 4 gallons. Stop buying things. You aren't management, you aren't using the corporate card. Just stop.

    Your answers are appearing as quotes because I did that.

    To replace the printer requires a call to the computer center. Same place you call when the computers go down. They hae a new one sent out in 2 days, you plug it in and send theother one back.

    Like my waxer as a example, it was bought in 1987
    Yep. And they're still good blockers. Used to run alloy back in the day.

  7. #57
    OptiBoard Apprentice Slugathor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FullCircle View Post
    *sigh* that price is for 4 gallons. Stop buying things. You aren't management, you aren't using the corporate card. Just stop.

    Your answers are appearing as quotes because I did that.

    To replace the printer requires a call to the computer center. Same place you call when the computers go down. They hae a new one sent out in 2 days, you plug it in and send theother one back.


    Yep. And they're still good blockers. Used to run alloy back in the day.
    I never said I bought those 4 gallons. I was curious as to how much it cost. When we ran out (whichs happened a lot) I went out to buy that 70% stuff from walgreens.

    I know I am not management. Frankly, I dont really care anymore if we run out of something, I have yet to recieve compensation for it, even though my GM said she would take care of it.

    As for the printer, I am just stating how long it took, that is all. I have no control over that stuff. The LM and GM took care of that part.

    Whats this alloy?

  8. #58
    ATO Member OPTIDONN's Avatar
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    Oh boy! This makes me miss my LC days! Slugathor...don't always assume that there's a better opportunity some where else...there's morons every where you go. LC is a great place to learn the basics. Stay for another year or so before you leave.

    That's great that you want your ABO but don't stop there, go for your Master Certification as well!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Slugathor View Post
    No, I have passed the written part. Havent taken the inspection part yet (RQC couldnt keep us for more then 4 hours for the test, he had over 5 ppl and only one set of glasses for that part of the test. Will take that part probably in 2 weeks).

    I know I shouldn't be doing it. Do I want to do it? No. I have to because my GM and LM are making me do it.
    Reading through all of this, one thing comes to mind...it's obvious your managers lack all of the skills required to be successful managers and mentors. It is absolutely inexcusable to have an 8 month old 'green' employee bearing the brunt of all management's mistakes. The optical industry is a great industry, don't let this mess taint your opinion. Call in the 'Donald' (1-800-LCSNITCH) , and fire their sorry a$$es. It's confidential and I'm sure LC Corporate would love to hear about this. When I worked there 20 years ago, LC Corporate actually employed a retired FBI investigator that would simply run a paper trail, and VOILA! They will then replace those positions, hopefully with dedicated, knowledgeable, experienced managers.

  10. #60
    ATO Member HarryChiling's Avatar
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    I have spent over 200 dollars on antifreeze for the chiller
    That chiller must be bleeding coolant, sounds like it needs hoses replaced or something. Find the problem and fix it or it will eat you up, it's far easier to maintain a lab then to run it into the ground.

    From the sounds of it you got a diamond in the rough, a bunch of idiots running the ship. All you need to worry about is learning the ropes and when the time comes takes the reigns and make it better. Or keep looking for that great optical gig that pays a fortune, it's like a [glowo=yellow]pot of gold[/glowo] at the end of a [glowo=black]rainbow[/glowo]
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  11. #61
    OptiBoard Apprentice Slugathor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HarryChiling View Post
    That chiller must be bleeding coolant, sounds like it needs hoses replaced or something. Find the problem and fix it or it will eat you up, it's far easier to maintain a lab then to run it into the ground.

    From the sounds of it you got a diamond in the rough, a bunch of idiots running the ship. All you need to worry about is learning the ropes and when the time comes takes the reigns and make it better. Or keep looking for that great optical gig that pays a fortune, it's like a [glowo=yellow]pot of gold[/glowo] at the end of a [glowo=black]rainbow[/glowo]
    Yea. Despite all the ding dong that hits the fan everyday:shiner:, I do learn a lot. Our 113 generator busted yesterday and me and a coworker had to fix it for the first time in like 3 years. Come to think of it, I better run the polisher pumper in some hot water, dont think anyone has maintained that in like a month .

  12. #62
    Master OptiBoarder Ginster's Avatar
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    Yes,I remember,

    I started out At Vision Works owned by Eckerd opticals in Miami Fla. I've even worked some wholesale labs in my 25 Yrs'. I now work for an Ophthalmology Practice here in Texas. I could not imagine being without the skills and knowledge I learned while working for a lab. I would love to see a lab forum. And yes I remember the three pin fining and polishers, and the old generator;s that where bigger than me.:p

  13. #63
    OptiBoard Apprentice Slugathor's Avatar
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    Ya know, I recently went into a privately owned store and talked to the owner a bit. He let me see his lab and I felt like I was on another planet. It was really tiny, but the machines inside the lab beared no resemblance to what I use at my LC store(everything is ancient-from the 80's and 90's). All the machines have LCD panels and are whisper quiet; I think one of the machines is a marker/edger combo but I cant be sure. I am worried when I do leave, I will have to relearn everything about the manufacturing of lenses again :hammer:

    So anyway, I thought I would give you a update on the previous mess I was discussing about. Turns out my LM switched the day and month on my promotion fax thing. Just got certified today with one of my lab coworkers. Was seriously thinking about taking the ABO in may but I need to focus on finishing up my BS.

    As for my store not having the best management, my RQC was telling me that it has been a problem for a while. While I was taking the inspection test, he was telling me that san francisco had like the highest turnover rate in the nation. My LM has seen several GMs go through the store in just the past couple years.

  14. #64
    ATO Member HarryChiling's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slugathor View Post
    Ya know, I recently went into a privately owned store and talked to the owner a bit. He let me see his lab and I felt like I was on another planet. It was really tiny, but the machines inside the lab beared no resemblance to what I use at my LC store(everything is ancient-from the 80's and 90's). All the machines have LCD panels and are whisper quiet; I think one of the machines is a marker/edger combo but I cant be sure. I am worried when I do leave, I will have to relearn everything about the manufacturing of lenses again :hammer:

    So anyway, I thought I would give you a update on the previous mess I was discussing about. Turns out my LM switched the day and month on my promotion fax thing. Just got certified today with one of my lab coworkers. Was seriously thinking about taking the ABO in may but I need to focus on finishing up my BS.

    As for my store not having the best management, my RQC was telling me that it has been a problem for a while. While I was taking the inspection test, he was telling me that san francisco had like the highest turnover rate in the nation. My LM has seen several GMs go through the store in just the past couple years.
    The nice thing about working on older equipment is that it was very manual so you learned the concepts on how to fabricate lenses, the new equipment does everything for you so it's easier to work. All the equipment does the same stuff it's just now more automated so you'll be fine.
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    Good Memories

    I have read through this post and it brings back alot of good, and bad, memories. I started at a LC over ten years ago. Went from frame stylus to LM and then straight to burnt out. :hammer: However; I learned most everything I know from the time spent there. I started with an old 108CT, two Weco 440's and a Horizon II. I was lucky enough to have a LM that taught me the "old" way of doing things and how to figure all job information on paper without the crutch of the computer. All I can say to anyone getting started in optics is learn all you can and ask as many question as you can think of. With the new edgers in the market now there is a void on true optical knowledge in the field. If you can learned on the older style equipment, the new equipment will be simple. They are designed so anyone can run them, but if you know how it truly works you will be able to use the new stuff to their fullest potential. I work for an edger distributor and I see it every day. People with the simplest question that they can not figure out because they don't truly understand what the edger is doing.

    Basically...stick with it, learn all you can and become a true professional in our field!

  16. #66
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    Quote Originally Posted by EdgerGuy View Post
    I have read through this post and it brings back alot of good, and bad, memories. I started at a LC over ten years ago. Went from frame stylus to LM and then straight to burnt out. :hammer:
    You were a Frame Stylus????
    What was it like running through all that nose cheeeze?
    LOLOLOLOLL:D


    p.s. only a true edger guy could mix up a stylus and a stylist.:bbg:
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  17. #67
    OptiBoard Apprentice Slugathor's Avatar
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    It's been a while since there has been a post but i thought i would reply to some of the more recent posts.

    I would love to understand how to figure out the "white" manually. My LM boasts how he was taught how to do it. So I asked him if he would teach me and he said it was such a long time ago he forgot :finger:. This is pretty much the only thing left that I do not understand fully. I mean, I can look at the "white" and tell the retail people if it will work or not, I just dont understand fully how they calculate the laps, prism rings, and other such things. Honestly, I am not sure what more i can really learn other then the "white." I feel like I have hit a ceiling which can only be broken with getting my ABO (I am taking it in Nov. :D). The LM told me that he was gonna watch me and another tech about the lead tech position, but that was like 5 months ago.... I am guessing it has to do with our slow business. Today, our Optometrist was told to stay home, so we had no appointments :drop:. As for nose cheese (shivers)..... I just cleaned a pair of what looked like WWI glasses for a old man today. As I was cleaning em, i noticed the cheese wasn't like the usual variety. It was crusted all over the frame where the bevel of the lenses slot into.....I think it was blood, cause it smelled funny. Thank god i was wearing my gloves. That reminds me, yet another item I have to put on the dry eraser board to be ordered, I swear my LM wont order more stuff until surface is down or the GM is breathing down his neck. Just curious, is it a serious health hazard if there is no air filtration system over the tint machine? I swear whenever I turn that thing on, it smells like behind:angry:. Also, I am assuming its really bad if you dont wear a mask when you roll and polish a lens with that green gunk? The LM refuses to buy the masks for some reason, I am getting to the point where I should buy my own personal masks.

    Anyway, I hope I pass the ABO exam (using Michael Disanto's Certification Review Book). I have survived this much, might as well and try and make a career out of it :shiner:.
    Last edited by Slugathor; 09-29-2008 at 12:47 AM.

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