Tuesday, November 20, 2007


Packing is a big enough pain in the ass, but when you add in the clusterfuck that is an exit clearance, you get a very tired, very annoyed Donut.

For all of you federal employees out there: did you think that starting your job was ridiculous, what with the background checks and listing every single place you've lived and every single person you ever met EVER?

Exit clearances are worse.


In my case, my organization (oh, who cares at this point - I'm sure that most of you have figured out by now that I work at the Smithsonian) has offices all over the goddamn DC metro area and I have to go to twelve different places.


First, I have to go to the Library, even though I have NEVER HAD A LIBRARY CARD, and sign something that says that I never had a library card. So, time well spent.

Second, I have to go to the credit union. I don't have an account there, but I have to go nonetheless.

Third, I have to go to the Archives. I still haven't figured out why.

I can skip three offices, because I don't work with collection items, am not a foreign scholar, and don't have any outstanding lawsuits with the Institution. As far as I know.

Fourth, I have to go to the Comptroller and someone will walk my papers around to various people to get signatures. Really, that's what the receptionist told me when I called yesterday.

Fifth, I have to go to the Office of Contracting, to... I'm not sure what I'm supposed to do there.

(Did I mention that these two offices are in Crystal City?)

Sixth, the Accountable Property Officer has to sign off saying that I don't have any desk chairs in my back pocket. Or whatever - I'm not really sure.

Seventh, I have to go to the Office of Human Resources for my exit interview. "Why am I leaving? Well, though I enjoy being paid practically minimum wage, I'd like to pay off my graduate school student loans before I die."

Eighth, the Office of Protection Services, to turn in my badge. Sniff. And it says something about "medical records," which... I don't know.

Ninth, my office, to turn in keys, official records and files, manuals (obviously I would want to keep these forever), my government driver's license (what?), and my uniforms (I wish I had a uniform - I wouldn't play "try everything on and decide I hate everything I own" each morning).

Basically, this takes up an entire day. Whatever.

Okay, off to the credit union!


Anonymous said...

best of luck to you. i am five years away from retirement from the smithsonian... maybe if i begin the paperwork now, it willl be time to actually leve by the time it is all done...

Heather said...

Thanks, anony! I was told that the exit clearance process was due to be automated soon, so hopefully you won't have to go through as much as I did.

(Though I don't see that happening, it being the Smith and all).

nutmeg96 said...

So, if you don't do all the steps in the exit clearance process, do they fire you? :)

Heather said...

nutmeg - Ha, wouldn't that just be typical? No, though - if you don't complete each and every step, you don't get your last paycheck. Jerks!