Monday, July 9, 2012

WHY YOU SHOULD NOT CONSIDER WORKING IN A CALL CENTER

Hello, Folks! As what I have promised you last week, I'll be writing about the CONS of working in a Call Center. On this post, you will see every single detail you need to know Why You Should Not Consider Working in a Call Center. First and foremost, this post is written not to discourage any Call Center Agent wannabe's out there. Our aim is to let our dear readers to know the truth about this job. This post might help a lot of people to gauge themselves, if this kind of job is really for them. I hope that this post will enlighten our family, friends, and readers about the real nature of our job. Call Center work is not an easy job. Let's get it started!


Call Center Industry is one of the highest paying Industries in the Philippines. I have seen all the good and the bad side of this job. Take it from me, since I've been working as a Call Center Agent for almost 7 years now. I also asked some friends who work in the same Industry (from other companies) to give me some pointers on this post. As what I have discussed last week on my post about the TOP 5 Reasons WhyYou Should Work in a Call Center; this job is very lucrative for most Filipinos. But, not many really understand the hard-work and the sufferings that we have to endure just to keep our job. I'll also give some short tips in each topic that might be useful for those who are still planning to work in the Call Center Industry. We work to live, and to support our family. Sometimes, we put "Health" as the last priority in our list, which is not supposed to be. We often ignore the consequences that this job is giving us. Aside from taking care of our health, there are also several things that are often being ignored. Here are the Cons of Working in a Call Center...

CONS OF WORKING IN A CALL CENTER


Sleep Deprivation - Since, we work in the Philippines, and most Call Centers here handle U.S. Based Accounts. We have to sleep in the morning, while our family members are either at work or school. And, wake up at night, to go to work, aside from the fact that we are missing a lot of things from our family. Not many people realize how difficult it is to sleep in the morning. Our Body Clock tells us to go to bed at night, and wake up in the morning. Yes, you will get used to it, but it will take several weeks or even months. And, how can you get used to it, if your schedule usually change every month? Believe me; this is not easy, especially for newbies. Time Management will play a big factor to avoid Sleep Deprivation.

Tons of Stress - You have to ask yourself, how really tough you are. You have to get used to hearing complaints, dealing with irate, rude and abusive callers. If you don't, it may lead to anxiety. Because, you still have to worry about passing your monthly metrics or scorecards. Each account gives different requirements for passing a metric. The burdens alone from weird, racist and out of this world customers will surely make you cry, especially, for those who are just in the nesting or transition period. You have to fight stress, or it will kill you! One thing that I remember my boss told me. I shouldn't get affected by those callers, since; their frustration is just about the service. So, I shouldn't really take it personally. But, the truth is; this kind of job sometimes makes me feel like I'm a slave. I get yelled at, insulted or even called names by Callers that I'm trying to help. This kind of job will just make you feel that you are lacking of dignity. Because, as much as you want to fight back, you can't, since, you have a job because, of these crazy callers. You can't even be sarcastic or rude, since, you could get fired. But, on the other hand; the truth is not all Callers are rude, there are still many who are very nice, cooperative and fun to talk with. Fighting stress will become easier as the time goes by. Just have fun and enjoy the company of your colleagues and friends! There's really no secret. All you have to do is, once you leave your work, leave everything behind. Do what you love most, treat yourself, play with your pets and spend more time with your family and friends.

Verbal, Emotional and Mental Abuse - Our job is to take in calls and help callers with their concerns. In this job, you will encounter different kinds of people; from educated and nice, down to callers from hell. Aside from the racial slurs; hurtful and disparaging comments to your age, sex, and nationality are actually expected in this kind of job. Even to those people that you are trying to help. They will expect you to do magic on most of the time. And, if you won't be able to fix their issue, they will accuse you that you don't know what you are doing. There are just people who love to give burdens, and make things more difficult and complicated. Or, from the beginning of the call, they would just be sarcastic and disrespectful, or they won't cooperate at all. Since, you need this job; all you have to do is to swallow it all. I agree to what most supervisors or Team Leaders will say about this; that the Callers are just angry because of the situation, and they are not really against you. Yes, it is easy to apologize and empathize. But, let's face the reality; it still can affect you as an individual. You would feel bad for yourself, or you may ask yourself why the hell you accepted this very degrading job. Believe me, when I was still in the transition period, I almost had to think of grabbing a blade and slitting my own throat. It's a mental torture at its finest! If you are not well prepared for this kind of job, you might not last in this Industry. I guess, it's best to prepare yourself for the worst. You have to be good in swallowing your pride and you have to be more patient, or crazy callers will overwhelm you! I know that it's not normal, and they shouldn't be tolerated. Just always put in your mind that you won't have a job, without these callers. We can't stereotype, and judge every Caller, since, not all of them are the same. You have to choose, it's either they affect you, or you affect them! There's always a way to pacify an abusive caller. After you end a bad call, just shake off all the negativity and take a deep breath to help another caller! I know that it's not as easy as it looks like, but, it's something that you should practice each day, if you really want to pursue a career in this Industry. 

Lack of Time and Social Life - Most Call Centers here in the Philippines serve U.S. Accounts or Clients, we work at night, and get our rest in the morning. For most Technical Support jobs for Internet, Technology, Mobile, and Wi-Fi Service Providers, we have work even during Christmas, New Year's Eve, and other special holidays. Those precious times should be given to us as our rest day to keep with our family. But, our rights are often being ignored. I understand that it's in our contract to work even during holidays. That's why we can't really do anything about it. But, just like any ordinary people. We also have family, relatives and friends that we rarely see except during holiday season. It really sucks when you are at work, while the other side of your brain is thinking about your family! I remember the time, when I had to spend the New Year's Eve at work. At exactly 12 midnight, I was by the window, looking at the fireworks outside of our building! This may sound weird, but, I noticed that tears started running down in my face. Of course, there are foods and lots of gadgets to be raffled. But, I would still choose to be home and spend the holiday with my family. Filing of Vacation Leave is also often very difficult. You can't really plan ahead of time, since, you won't be sure if your Vacation Leave request will be granted. Aside from that, the schedule itself is really difficult. The risk of working at night is very high, especially, for ladies. At around 1 or 2 in the morning, you could be an easy prey for those hungry thieves or criminals. Since, we have to work at night; we usually rest in the morning. By the time that we get home, most of our family members are either at school or work. Then, once we wake up at night, we only have a couple hours to spend with our family, since; we still have to manage our time. We still have to allocate time to prepare for work and for traveling. This is our daily routine, which kills our social life. It also hinders us from spending more time with our family. This may sound cheesy. But, the reality is our parents are growing old, kids are growing up, and we can only hope for our rest day to see them. In this Industry, you will learn how to sacrifice so many things, especially, if this kind of job is your only choice. Our schedule can also change without prior notice. 

No Job Security - Unlike any other ordinary office jobs, where you just have to finish your paper works and you can call it a day. If you fail to pass your scorecards or metrics in a given time (usually within 3 months), there's a huge possibility that you will lose your job. Everything seems to be revolving around numbers. Neither the Company nor your bosses are often being controlled by the numbers. You can only count in your hands those people who really care! Of course, I understand that we all have to perform and get the job done, or even exceed the expectations. But, who the hell wants to fail their scorecards?! NO ONE! But, since, it is our duty to perform in our job; we are expected to pass all the metrics and scores that are being required by the clients. However, the anxiety and stress that this brings us is just immeasurable. This is another burden that you will have to carry each day, until you pass all your metrics. It's just like crossing a thin wire just to get to the safe place. And also, if you committed a terminable offense, then, you can say your farewell to your colleagues! Being rude or sarcastic to a caller is really a ground for getting you kicked out of the job. But, simple mistakes like, forgetting to verify the account can also get you fired. I am not saying that it's impossible to keep this kind of job. I won't be working as a Technical Support Representative for almost 7 years now, if it's not possible. All I am trying to say is, it seems that there's really no job security in this kind of job. Let me give you another reason why you could easily lose your job. If your company lose the account; it's either you will be asked to be transferred to a different account or wait until they find you an account. That's how life works in this Industry. I guess, it won't be a bad idea; if ever you get into this kind of work, aside from working really hard to pass your scores, metrics and avoiding any terminable offense, you should also start saving for the rainy days! 


These are just several things you should put in your mind, before even planning to apply in a Call Center company. I hope that this article helps you gauge if this is really the right job for you! Until next time! If you like this post, please, don’t forget to subscribe below. Thanks!

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16 comments:

Herbert said...

Agree with you Sir Jomi though I never worked on a call center but my wife did for almost 8 years and this are the most usual things i heard from her. :(

joy said...

the reason why me and my husband discourages our eldest son to work from a call center,not only his health is at risk but his safety too, going off to work in the wee hours :(

jehzlau said...

Really nice write-up. Hehe. Dami kong kakilala na nagkakasakit dahil sa stress. Dapat matibay ka talaga pag nag work sa call center. >__<

Bennix said...

I agree master Jomi, some of the reasons you've mention I only realized now when I am presently working in a BPO industry but we really need to take risk para mabuhay at aasang mkahanp pa ng mas mgandang opportunity.hahah

Jerome said...

Very well said.. As a newbie like me this article is really helpful..My training will be on July 16 for the position of TSR(Network troubleshooting, just like you sir jomy)..I should now equipped myself lots of energy and be a Tough minded Optimist to easily go with the flow in the nature of CC industry.

Kikay Trekkie said...

lahat naman ng industry may 'metrics' quota or some measure of finding out if your slacking off or doing your job well. and complaints is the bread and butter of our industry, without which we would not have jobs.
wag kasi personalin hahaha gaya natin, this call center job is a means to an end so we'd have money to pay for our real passion hahaha blogging LOL

isp101 said...

@Herbert - I actually admire those people who endure the hardships, difficulties and sufferings in the Call Center Industry for years! Wow, 8 years?! That should be considered as an accomplishment! Send my regards to your wife! Thanks for dropping by! =)

@joy - That's very true mommy joy, napaka delikado talaga. Ilang beses na ako muntikang ma holdap, I'm just so thankful 'coz God is good! You could ask your son to find another Call Center that offers morning shift schedules. Thanks for visiting! =)

@jehzlau -Sobrang stressful at toxic talaga ang work sa Call Center. Kaya you should really balance everything, and keep yourself healthy to endure the everyday torture! Thanks for visiting, Master Jehz! =)

@Bennix -That's true bennix, we have to make a living, especially, if this is your only option, you really have to be strong! Thanks for dropping by! =)

@Jerome -Hey, thanks for commenting. I'm glad I was able to help you with my articles. You really have to ride the wave, and think positive! I'm wishing you all the best! God bless! =)

Nonoy said...

Mahirap talaga mag work sa call center;kelangan sanay sa stress at mahabang pasensya.at indi rin talaga pang long term na trabaho; :-)

betchai said...

very informative post, i heard along from some friends how stressful the job is, after reading this, it makes me understand more why it is stressful.

Henry said...

Talagang napakanda ng pagkagawa ng post na to, saktong sakto sa paghihirap ng agents pero balak ko pa rin ituloy call center career ko. ^_^

Arvin U. de la Peña said...

medyo mahirap daw ang pag work as call center agent, pero sulit naman daw ang sahod....sabi lang iyon ng kaibigan ko..

Anonymous said...

Well said Jom, could you please make a post next time on how to deal with stress and alternatives on how to deal with irate customers and such? Also a small tips on what supplements(food, vitamins) and whatnot that could help us specially in our new era of nocturnal lifestyle. Thanks for all your post by the way.

Anonymous said...

Hi my name is Jess, maybe you could give us some help on how to last longer in a call center because based on my observation no one last longer in this type of work, mostly they can go either for 2-3 months then out of the service immediately.

Jess said...

Sir Jom! How much is the tax deduction in your salary and how much money left do your received every end of the month from your call center work of course.

Jess said...

Sir Jom, its me Jess again. Let me rephrase my comment above. "how much monthly deduction for SSS, Philhealth, and Pagibig?" how much left to your salary?

isp101 said...

Jess, I'm really sorry for the very late reply. I've been so busy in the past few weeks. Honestly, I'm now on my 7th year in our Call Center, may mas matatagal pa sa akin, may 8th and meron ng 9th year na mga friends ko. May mga tumatagal naman sa Industry na ito, it's all about dedication, hard work and patience. Oo, nakakasawa na madalas, kasi paulit ulit yung ginagawa niyo, pero this job is lucrative compared to other standard jobs. I can't discuss with you how much I'm earning, but, I'm already reaching the highest salary of a regular agent. Tax is awful, sometimes the deduction is big, when you get a lot of incentives and bonuses. I remember getting a tax of around 6k in just one payday, just imagine that! I hope this answers your question! I wrote a few new articles, you might wanna read them! God bless!

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