5:00 O’Clock ShadowAnonymous
What some people don’t realize about the QA department is that the vast majority of the testers are temps. The game company keeps testers on only for as long as they are needed for a particular project and will then discard them in a manner most people discard Chinese food menus.
As a result all testers learn to fear 5:00 pm when the project they are working on is starting to come to a close. A typical day shift ends at 5:30, but if a company wishes to get rid of you a member of the management rounds up the unlucky few at 5, makes sure you have all of your personal belongings, and then instructs the fired-testers-walking to follow them for a “quick meeting”. This meeting involves a thank you for your hard work followed by the ceremonial handing over of the security badge and finally topped off with being escorted out of the building.
Case in point; I was working on a project that was almost complete.
As the days wore on members of our team were being picked off and sent to other projects. With our team slowly dwindling like sand in an hour glass you could feel the tension in the remaining members each time someone from management so much as walked by our table.
Finally, with our team but a shell of its former self, our lead walked up and hovered over us awkwardly for a few moments. I glanced at the clock on the computer monitor. 5:00 pm. I looked up at my lead.
There was a hint of melancholy in his eyes. We had become pretty good friends over the course of the project.
“Gather your personal belongings and follow me please. We need to have a quick meeting.” he said.