This is a bit of a silly problem, but there are no paper towels in the restrooms and kitchens at my new workplace (which is a quite large software company). There is only a hand dryer in the restroom and napkins in the kitchen. However, it is very inconvenient and impractical to use napkins to dry ones hands and kitchenware because wet napkins get torn apart and you have to pick little bits of wet napkin from your fingers, cups, etc... And you definetely can't dry your face with a hand dryer in the restroom (there are no napkins there), and I personally don't really like to use a hand dryer at all.
With all these arguments gathered, I've created a request for maintenance department to provide paper towels in the office (the company has a helpdesk system for such things). Before doing this I actually knew that they've already turned down one employee with such request, but it didn't really make sense to me so I thought that somehow I would push this through.
Not surprisingly they gave me the same "we're sorry for your inconvenience, but our office policy doesn't include paper towels", in which by "office policy" they refer to the list of supplies, furniture and such which is "standard" for our office. Obviously my question is how do I persuade them to revise this policy and provide those damn paper towels? :)
What I've tried
- Suggested to conduct a survey among employees to make sure this is actually needed (and not just for me)
- Stated that in my opinion such a policy that doesn't take into account employees' wishes just doesn't make sense
- Noted that the list of "standard" office supplies doesn't include napkins either, so this aspect of the office environment is probably haven't been developed well
- Asked them to provide me with a process or a contact point for changing this policy
What did I get in response
- A statement that says that the process of altering the policy doesn't involve "conducting surveys or signing documents"
- They CC'ed the whole thing to my PM which in turn CC'ed my TL
- As a result, my TL tried to convince me to give up and close the issue. I replied to TL that the issue makes sense to me so I won't just close it and that them (maintenance department) involving him and the PM is in my opinion unprofessional since it has nothing to do with project activities.
- They've tried to close this issue (twice already) with "Can't Reproduce" (!) reason. The whole "Can't Reproduce" thing might be a helpdesk workflow issue :)
What I didn't try
- Communicating with the maintenance department in person
- Gathering supporters on my own. This seems like causing to much trouble which the company definetely won't appreciate.
I am fully aware that this is a very minor issue, but on the other hand, this is what's bothering me that such a small matter is so hard to resolve. I'm also getting stressed over this fruitless "negotiation" process and feel like I am being a difficult and annoying person, but I also don't want to just give up (probably on principle) because the whole situation really doesn't seem right to me.