Review of my time employed with Alorica Clovis Center
|I am considering righting a letter to my employer, but am not certain if that is the right thing to do. I know I need to make the letter more concise. I just don't know if the overall tone and wording is appropriate.
To Whom It May Concern:
I felt the need to write to management identifying the issues I had while I was employed with the Clovis Alorica Center. It is my hope that in providing this information the training at Alorica will be improved and that each representative will be provided the tools to be an affective employee and problem solver. It is my belief, that no employee should feel inadequate or that they are unable to meet the responsibilities required of them.
I will start by addressing the pros and cons of working for Alorica. Pros include: standard minimum wage with unlimited over time; class room environment that helps one to adjust to a busy call center as to not feel alone and without support; and lastly career/growth opportunities. The cons include: lack of effective training, lack of floor support during the evenings and on weekends; and theft.
Going into Alorica, my expectation was that I would be trained to provide professional valuable customer service to consumers. I enjoy helping people. I figured this would be a great way to gain fulfillment and thorough training so I can be competent. It never entered my mind how challenging this position would be and that I would not be able to meet those challenges. Also, I had no idea the unprofessional environment I was throwing myself into. None of these expectations were set during the interview. Then again, I did not think to ask.
I was excited about the five week classroom training. I assumed there would be so much valuable information that would be presented to me. There is an amount of material that needs to be covered, yet the trainer did not seem to cover the material with enthusiasm or aptitude. His demeanor in general was approachable, laid back, down to earth, respectful, and knowledgeable. However, he did not effectively impart that knowledge to the class. The manner in which the modules were presented was that of a formality as opposed to useful tools/information that will make us great representatives. I determined that the trainers did not make the most of the material and show the students how its use will translate to the production floor. The trainers also do not take the time to set the expectation of how hostile callers will be. They have speakers come in and out of the classroom remarking how much opportunity there is, but never telling us about the difficulties, and how to overcome obstacles so we can last long enough to take advantage of those opportunities.
Training was provided in the form of games. However, none of the games helped me to use the material we were supposed to be learning in the modules. In using games as a teaching device, I would think that one would make the most of hot seats and various games by timing the games so that the entire class would go through the basic processes of making a plan change, applying credits, changing features, filling out forms such as TOPS and ITTS in order to work on handle time. The person with the best time could show the class how they would precede thus reinforcing the modules and getting class participation so that the training STICKS. Hot seats are great, however I feel the classroom should have been the hot seater’s floor support as to assist each individual in problem solving and getting used to resolving concerns. I would think games about positioning bad news would have had been better than playing Taboo. Games that help students relate and connect with customers are also vital. A couple of the trainers did do some activities to help the class connect and go over basic procedures, but not to the extent that would have had a strong impact. In the final weeks, I would think the training would take on a practical aspect. It would have been great, if we were trained so that each student graduating from the classroom could perform basic procedures with a general flow sequence in at least a ten minute period, of course with floor/class support.
The certificate given at the end of classroom training should have meant something. In my opinion, the certificate should have meant that I know how to de-escalate a call, when to transfer, how to negotiate a credit and what four factors to consider, how to position bad news, how to handle basic repetitious calls, how to handle a disconnect, and so forth. Hardly anyone in the graduating class was prepared and equipped to independently handle such calls. The only helpful thing from training was a list of items we should know how to handle on the floor. The trainer did not even go over these tasks with us as a class. Each individual was left to practice and figure out how to handle the items themselves. In the class, it would have been ideal if the list were used along with hot seats so that each student could get an idea of how to handle a live call in a timely fashion. As important as handle time is, I wonder why this was not emphasized during classroom training. I wonder why the class was not TRAINED to provide quality service with a decent handle time.
I cannot over emphasize the point, that the training environment does little to nothing to prepare students for the stress of not being able to satisfy most customers and not having a resolution for their concerns. There is so much that can be done to help prevent some of the stress. Effective training can go a long way to lowering employee turnover and increasing stats. Stats are preached in nesting and on the floor, yet no preparation occurs in the classroom to get us in the mindset of achieving stat goals.
Once I graduated to nesting, I still did not know about stats. I did not know how transfer rates and credits affected the stats. All I knew was I needed an ERP above 8 for production and resolve of yes for nesting. Teaching stats in the classroom would have set the expectation for the floor and allowed some people to know if they should proceed past graduation or not. For those, who chose to stay it would have been a huge benefit to understand stats and how to achieve them. This would have made nesting that more valuable. Also valuable would have been practicing a sequence of procedures for handling most basic calls. During nesting, I should not have been as clueless as I was about how to resolve basic concerns. I should have been prepared to handle the elementary repeat calls that happen day in and day out. I should not have had to raise my hand and go look for support as much as I did. I should have been equipped with the knowledge needed to feel independent and ready to help someone.
Let me not forget to mention the fact that half the VZ Learns we did were just marking complete. Many of those VZ Learns would have been useful as there were assignments about positioning, handling escalations and disconnects, and negotiating credits. I should have pushed the matter further, but I did not. I inquired in nesting as to how to be able to complete those assignments, but the solution was not a viable option.
Floor support was good 85-90% of the time, albeit sometimes ineffective. Our huddles were also not time wells pent. We did not discuss the solutions to the challenges on the phones and how to affectively handle them, we mainly vented. We occasionally went over procedures, but mainly just verification. In hindsight, I see many things I could have worked on in nesting to better prepare myself for production. However, I doubt my team leads would have been that helpful. I found that a lot of team leads were more interested in getting the caller off the phone than resolving their concerns. A lot of the answers I received were blanket and did not meet the customers need/ concern. Also, some of the team leads did not even have the correct information. I was given incorrect information a number of times which I am certain caused many three day repeats.
I truly feel Alorica can be a place where someone who is embarking on their first job/ career path or switching careers can come and be trained for great opportunities IF the training was actually available. I believe I could have been a great training assistant and maybe a great trainer someday, but the opportunity is only there for those who catch on fast, are good at positioning, debating, connecting, and are able to acclimate to the floor with the little training that is provided. Others of us actually require the training for the opportunity to prove real.