I remember this exact date (March 2, 2019), 2 years ago, where I broke my chains from my 1st company that I served for 3 years. It was a great ride for me, working with people from a diverse environment from different backgrounds, until I decided to leave so I can shift my career into a different path.
How did I get into the Business Process Outsourcing industry?
I was a fresh graduate from ABE International Business College last May 2014 and took B.S. Information Technology. I was able to finish college but used most of the things that I learned back then. Our expectations while were studying is, once we're finished we'll get a job based on our course.
In reality, we need to gain experience in that certain field. That is why we ended up being rejected by recruiters ending up entering the BPO industry. It took me 6 months to find a job after graduating college. From my previous article, I told on that fateful day that changed my life.
No connections within the company, it's just that I was depressed on the day before, when a pastor showed up in front of me while taking a good look at the sunset of Manila Bay. Prayed and then walked towards the crowd the following day, from Makati's Central Business District to MRT Ayala Station where I stumbled upon ePerformax's Cafe2Go Booth.
Stonewalled Tactics of Recruiters
We were being stonewalled by the recruiters and they choose who has more experience in the field rather than the fresh graduates. And it is based on their criteria for the profession needed, you'll need 2 to 3 years experience, that's the minimum. Others would go way beyond that. 5 years of experience? How on earth would you find that rightful candidate?
Another tactic they'll use is this specific reason "We'll call you back once we have an update with you", meaning no callbacks. For us applying back then, it means we didn't pass for their qualifications, and we end up roaming around the city.
Applying for their company you should have a connection inside as they'll vouch for you. These stonewalled tactics are still used today if you want to apply for that position you're working for after years of studying. That is why most of us apply and get a job from BPO companies. But the sad part is for our parents questioning why we chose this profession.
Questioning our Profession by our Parents and Relatives as Call Center Agents
From our parents, even our relatives would end up questioning our profession. Yes, we're able to finish college, but ended up working for BPO companies like ePerformax, Teleperformance, VXI, TaskUs, TeleTech, Harte Hanks, Telus, and other companies based here in the Philippines.
Importantly, there is nothing wrong with it why we chose this path. Great benefits, and good money, as we try to explain it to them until they got the full meaning of it. I remember 6 years ago, days after I celebrate my 23rd birthday watching Heneral Luna at SM Megamall, I got a message from my sister, and it's about my dad.
That was around 9:00 or 10:00 pm, and I was about to go home. My father went to her in the afternoon, then left some documents as she hands her over to me a processing application to Canada. I know what you're thinking. It is a great opportunity, but I refused it. Why?
First, I just signed my contract at ePerformax, as I am willing to do the best of my ability to perform, work hard and get everything I want. Second, I refused it, pretending to my father that I would go along with him in Canada until I told him the truth so they can be with his mistress.
My father was a womanizer, an irresponsible father, and only thinks of himself from the moment when my sisters were born, and even for me. I grew up with a broken family, and I'm the youngest. Both of my sisters now have families of their own, and it is very hard for me when my father is not around. I was an innocent kid then until I found out the painful truth when I grew up as they told the story from my mother and sisters.
That was the last time I spoke to him about why I don't want to go to Canada. Because, I was happy with my new profession, and I'm able to help out my family. If that happens, well, he's going to monitor my every movement, do this or don't do that. My father, still thinks that I'm still a kid. I'm already grown up and think wisely as an adult.
I even promised myself that I don't want to become like him if I'll ever have my own family in the future. My mother respected my decision, my 1st sister does, but my 2nd sister doesn't like it, because I wasted that opportunity. From her point of view, yes it's a great opportunity. But from my side, I didn't because of my father's plan to be with his Filipina nurse & mistress.
Tears are pouring out on my eyes while I'm writing this and remember that grim and dark days of the 3rd week of October 2015. It's just that my 2nd sister opened up that issue again, but I'm already moved on to it. Now, they're together with his mistress in Canada without me.
My father said harsh things to me, that I'm selfish and prideful. So what? I don't care, and I have got nothing to prove to him. I guess that was a long story. The diploma is only just a piece of paper with your name and the course you've finished for years as I have told this my parents and relatives.
Education is not being measured based on your personality, it is based on how you interact with other people. Anyways, aside from our parents, let us also not forget the critics questioning our profession.
Questioning our Profession by the Critics outside the BPO industry
From ordinary people to radio jocks that you hear on the radio station. Applying to becoming an agent, and the duties & responsibilities of being an advocate is no easy task.
Why? You'll have an assessment where it tests your skills if you're fit for the position, followed by an initial interview where you'll be asked a few basic questions. If you pass, you'll be endorsed for a client interview. If not, then you'll have to follow their procedure to re-apply for the next few months, depends on the company's procedure.
Same thing as goes for the client interview. If you pass, then you'll be given a contract showing your basic pay, benefits, your checklist for employment requirements, and the exact date when your 1st day of training begins. If not, then you'll have to wait for another few months to re-apply.
Speaking English throughout the shift is challenging for us agents. Being an agent is not an easy profession, as you'll deal with irate customers depending on their profile from pre-teens to adults, including senior citizens who just want to have a conversation. As you'll get the process of every concern, the results are very rewarding.
You'll get recognized for your efforts as a performing agent, rewarding you with a bonus from gift certificates, appliances, freebies, and metric bonuses that are separated from your basic pay & benefits, which you'll eventually get on every payout.
I've been recognized as a top-performing agent multiple times. As eBay's Member 2 Member (M2M) Email Rockstar of June 2016 at ePerformax, and the Top Performing Agent of the 3rd Quarter of 2020 at Teleperformance, before my last program Microsoft Office was transferred to Jaipur, India.
It's not just simply copy and paste queries, overall you'll need to use your critical thinking skills to resolve the issue and use our available resources in front of our screens. As I say again for the last time, being a call center agent is not easy, and I also include not a no-brainer profession.
Everyone's a critic, as they say. For the critics, I dare you! I double, triple, quadruple dare you! Try to apply to become an agent and see what happens. If you get lucky, congratulations in advance! If not, then Karma will breach into your doors. Shame on you for insulting & criticizing the Business Process Outsourcing industry.
Why I left ePerformax? My first company?
It was a roller coaster ride for me that I served 3 years for eBay under ePerformax. I am grateful that they gave me the opportunity to be trained, to work with different walks of life in a diverse environment, gained knowledge & advice by doing the right thing. Because we exist to help our customers by giving the quickest, easiest, simplest way and making our community great along the way.
My life was in a complete circle. I had the financial freedom, I can go anywhere, eat, buy anything I want until I fell in love with a transgender. The benefits that I enjoyed so much disappeared, one by one. Followed by the rules created by the Operating Supervisors at that time which made a big impact on our productivity.
I got burned out because of the repeated cycle day after day, and your Team Supervisor expects & by pressuring you to perform more until I have thrown the towel to the ground and decided to leave. Leaving the company was the biggest decision of my life. Even if I am no longer part of that institution I will continue to perform and to show everyone out there that we are the best, not the biggest.
What's next for me?
Being an agent for 4 years, I learned that you can never please anyone. You'll never know what's coming from that phone call or the message you're getting on your email. For all the advocates out there, a snappy salute to everyone working in the BPO industry.
Now that I left my previous company, Teleperformance. I tried to apply with different companies the moment I got demotivated using this platform. Now that I'm back, and I guess it is time to say that I'm done serving my time to the BPO industry. My life doesn't end here, there will be new opportunities to come with endless possibilities.
Hey man, I was reading the post and know you aren't in Brazil or Portugal, but I got to ask... Santos is a Portuguese name, right? Portuguese descent? Cheers