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It is eight in the morning as the office boy unlocks the door of the office and switches on the light and the air conditioners. The aisles are deserted, seats empty but he has not a minute to spare, his punctuality and vigilance are paramount to maintain the efficiency of his colleagues, yet for all he does, his place will forever remain in the background and his importance and contribution at the workplace overlooked. This begs the question, who is an office boy? According to popular definition sites, an office boy is a man who works in a corporate environment,doing menial tasks such as handling or sorting of mail, fetching refreshments,lunches, filing documents, running errands for his boss and handles several more tasks along the lines of these (Office boy definition, 2017).
An office boy’s job starts before the bankers,accountants, managers and secretaries even file in; briefcases in hand,grumbling and complaining about the workload, traffic and the sweltering heatoutside and ends long after they are all gone . It is he who has to prepare theworkplace for them to work in; make sure their desks are in order—dailynewspaper folded neatly atop, cubicles are clean, air conditioners humming andblasting the halls with chilled air and a “delicious, refreshing” pot of tea isboiling on the stove to keep the workforce in a productive and active mood andit is he who at the end of the day, has to clean the mess made by them.
He is the ‘chai wala’, the emergency janitor,electrician, the occasional cook and server, the one who runs all errandswithout complaining about the heat, rain or cold. Some might debate that he isnot that essential of a cog in the corporate machine; the chief executives,presidents, vice presidents and directors have the greater load on theirshoulders but an office boy in Pakistan is no less. A look at the specificationsof this job required by different companies in Pakistan at Mustakbil.comand Rozee.pk, famous job hunting sites, gives a fair idea how much responsibilitylies on the shoulders of an office boy (Office Boy Job Description, n.d.)
An office boy serves as a supervisor in hisown domain. He might not be making spreadsheets or handling acquisitions andmergers but what he does supervise aids in the comfort of the rest of theemployees. From handling minimal clerical work to monitoring use of officesupplies and ensuring their availability, possessing basic knowledge of Englishand conservational skills, handling queries and requests from visitors, servinglunch, making tea, checking cleanliness, answering calls, often driving hissuperiors around and running errands of all natures, an office boy works noless than any other employee in an organization, seldom going as far as toassist other administrative staff in performing their wide range of officeduties and helping the receptionists, secretaries and other administrativeofficials. However his salary is less than most and only above a few; the veryjanitors and guards he supervises. His job title does not guarantee him promotion,incentives or insurance of any kind (Office Boy Jobs in Lahore Pakistan, May 25, 2017).
The salary for this jobvaries in accordance to the level of skill required by the company offering thepost, with an average being Rs.15, 000 per month. In instances where the officeboy must serve as chauffeur and personal assistant to the senior officials aswell, the salary can be as high as Rs. 25,000 but in some cases it can be aslow as Rs.6000 as well. For all that he is paid; the dedication required by anoffice boy is no less than that required by the highest ranked employee in anorganization. The entire workplace depends on the office boy for its smoothrunning and maintenance and that is no small feat in itself. Most job descriptionslist the qualities of: dedication, honesty, respect and alertness asprerequisites for this job (office boy/peon, n.d.).
The level of educationrequired for the post of an office boy in all major cities of Pakistan ranges frommetric to intermediate graduated. This comparatively low educationspecification combined with the little or no work experience required, meansthat many students who are short on funds choose this as a part-time job orfreshly matriculated students looking forward to support their families choosethis occupation. A major drawback of this job position is the miniscule chanceof promotion or upward mobility in the organization’s hierarchy. The minimaleducation of the office boy restricts his progress in the workplace. The mosthe can progress is by attaining the job of a personal assistant orreceptionist. This drawback coupled with the lack of incentives, support orsecurity provided by the job, an office boy in Pakistan, especially one with afamily, barely manages to make end meet. With his arduous tasks and longworking hours, the life of an office boy in Pakistan is far more comfortable (Office Boy Job Description, May 14, 2012).
Office boy definition. (2017). Retrieved from Your Dictionary: http://www.yourdictionary.com/office-boy
Office Boy Job Description. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.gov2egov.com/PANINDIADOCS/JDFILE/205401.pdf
Office Boy Job Description. (May 14, 2012). Retrieved from BestSampleJobDescription.com: http://www.bestsamplejobdescription.com/office-job-description/office-boy-job-description/
Office Boy Jobs in Lahore Pakistan. (May 25, 2017). Retrieved from Mustakbil.com: https://www.mustakbil.com/jobs/pakistan/lahore/office-boy/
office boy/peon. (n.d.). Retrieved from Jobs section: https://www.jobssection.com/jobs/view/office-boy-peon/