So, I'm possibly getting an offer shortly for a new job. I just started my current job as a contractor for an electric utility (doing engineering work) a couple weeks ago, but when I was in some training (specialized training, by a vendor coming in for a week) last week we were discussing the system operator job and watching them work for a bit (since we were doing something that kinda supports them).
I've always thought that would be a cool job, and I mentioned it to one of the managers who happened to be in there. This week my current boss tells me that the other managers are interesting in having me become a system operator. I don't know a whole lot of details yet, but here's what I do know.
It's shift work, 12 hour shifts at a time, 5-5. There's a 6 week schedule.
All day shifts are 5 AM - 5 PM (usually more like 5:30 because of the handoff), nights are 5 PM to 5 AM (again, more like 5:30 AM).
Wk1: M T day, S Su day
Wk2: W H F day
Wk3: relief. usually you work a week's schedule for someone, they don't move you between day/night if at all possible.
Wk4: M T W nights
Wk5: H F S Su nights
An engineering degree isn't required to be an operator. You have to go through training for 3-6 months, but the manager said I'd definitely be on the 3 month side of that. Because of the training, they want at least a 2 year commitment, but would prefer 3 years.
I'm currently a contractor, making a very good hourly rate. They'd convert me to a salary employee and I'd probably take a pretty good pay cut. I just don't know the numbers yet.
My main question is about the shift work. I've never been someone who falls asleep easily or stays asleep all that well, but I'm learning to get better at it. The fact that I'd only work 17.5 days on average every 6 weeks kinda appeals to me. It's also a schedule that makes it possible to take 2 weeks in a row off by just taking 2 days of vacation.