November 7, 2009
I missed my first day of work, the most crucial date in my employment.
While it’s just an orientation, the gravity of the offense still weighed heavily in my mind. To make up for this, I decided to attend the next orientation, which occurred a week later.
I didn’t knew that an announcement was made near the end of the last day in our language training. Our grades were provided early on, and having confirmed that I passed, I was dismissed and were allowed to go home. I didn’t linger long, even though there’s talks of bonding session with the other trainees, which I was intentionally avoiding because I’m positive that it’s just an inuman session.
Apparently, the announcement was made about 30 minutes before the end of the shift (3pm). I was long gone by then. The next day, being not present, most of my co-trainees thought I didn’t get thru.
Employment officially starts with yet another class, where we’re thought about the product and the tools of the trade, and a general walkthrough of the daily grind on the floor. Training ends with a practical exam testing our knowledge of the product and mastery of the tool.
The class was generally uneventful.
* * *
My first schedule was 1am, and surprisingly, I have no difficulty making an adjustment. Still, being addicted to sleep, I still need to gulp cups of coffee to remain energetic on the floor.
* * *
Now, about that piece of good news saying that you can finish calls without talking to the customer, there’s still a bit of bad news attached to it. It only applies to 20% of calls, or only one for every five calls. And regarding the product, we’re also informed that only 10% were tackled. The learning process continues on the floor. Makes sense.
I learned it the hard way on my first call. Sadly, the customer’s issue is not yet included in the tool, which means that I need to talk directly to the caller, and I got dizzy for a moment while trying to initiate a conversation to the person on the other end. In an effort to make an impression, I decided not to call my superiors for help and tried resolving the problem on my own. Sadly, I ended up arguing with the caller for 15 minutes and it eventually ended in a supcall. Bad way to start a new career. 😦
* * *
Two weeks later, I was coached for a call and was given an opportunity to listen to it. The good news is that I sounded fine, with none of the pitch problems I normally have. And for the record, I haven’t heard of anyone complaining about me having heavy accents or bad grammar, a common problem for beginners on the floor.
* * *
I honestly don’t remember what I did with my first salary. I think I used some during my birthday, but generally speaking, I didn’t spend it.
* * *
One month on the floor, I received my first user feedback, and it’s an excellent score. Apparently, it wasn’t just your supervisors and QA’s who can now grade you, the callers themselves can give you one also. For every phone call received, if there’s an email address on file, a survey will be sent out to it, allowing the caller to grade the agent. Eventually, I received several more, all good, no poor scores of 1 (poor) – 5 (average), which is all that mattered anyway. And considering that obtaining surveys during those days were much harder.
* * *
As per business requirements, my account began gradually reducing agents on the floor around this month on a weekly basis. I said I ‘m ready, considering that there are other accounts available, particularly one which is a tech account, something I’ve been yearning for. But weeks came and went, most of my friends were gone, but I’m still here. I usually meet them outside, and when I’m asked what’s my account, I merely replied, “I’m still here in my old account,” with just a tiny hint of envy.
By the middle of March, we’re down to about a hundred. That’s still a huge number. And then it all just happened, we were just singled out. But it’s too late. Sadly, the account where I want to enlist to no longer accepts additional reps.
* * *
It took me a month to get into another account, I was in limbo prior to that. It’s quite ironic that those who left earlier were now my superiors, and these has gotten into their heads. I was utterly pissed and deliberately underperformed. So it’s not surprising that when the first wave of dropouts were listed a month later, it’s not surprising that I was included.
* * *
I fought hard for regularization, and was lucky enough to acquire the papers two weeks before being kicked out of the account. I got a raise also.
I had 30 days to look for another account. I tried several and failed all of them.
And then, I’ve heard the news from the grapevine. My first account is in need of additional reps and the number of agents on the floor can’t accommodate the calls received on the line. I can only be grateful for this. I’m still holding a grudge, but it’s a bad time to be very choosy. I needed work badly, and having just been regularized, I don’t want it all to go to nothing.
Returning to the floor felt like coming back home. Maybe this is really the right account for me. I didn’t have any issues from this point forward.