Long Term Service

Is it worth staying at a company for more than 5 years? My simple answer is no. Not unless you want to progress into management and climb the ladder of hierarchy.

I’ve been at the same company for 12 years. I was asked, in the past, if I wanted to train as a team manager but I turned it down. The reason being that I’ve done the ‘responsibility’ thing at other companies. I’ve done the jobs where I’ve been in charge of other people, where I’ve been in charge of departments, jobs where I’ve had to exert authority, or where I’ve been in charge of personal details. Jobs where the responsibility meant that I needed to work over often as I needed to make sure that things got done, materials were got in on time, orders could be despatched on time, or staff knew that they were being taken care of in the company. I’ve had the nice job titles that impressed people.

It all changed when, at a particular manufacturing company I was working for, I found that the guys on the shop floor where earning more money than those of us working in the offices. What I mean is that they were earning per week what I and others were making per month. I then found a very nondescript job of entering data that paid the same money and was shorter hours, and it was right across the road from where I lived. Since then I’ve looked for the money and an easy life. 12 years ago I figured the call centre fell right into this category.

For several years I earned a lot in commission from the sales I made. It paid off big time. Then the FCA decided that agents (in any company) should not have commission as the proverbial carrot to motivate us. It was decided that a basic and a small bonus based on quality of calls was what was needed. I lost a lot of money in commission, as did many of my colleagues. However, at my age this job suits me. I feel too old for the responsibility that had in my 20’s and 30’s. I don’t want it any longer. I just want a job that I can do and then it leave at work, so I can go home free from stress.

Over the 12 years I’ve been in different departments and I’ve learnt a lot about the company. You’d think that experience would be greatly appreciated and looked after. Far from it. Those of us who have been there many years are being pushed out of the door, whether they’re trying to fire us for stupid things or whether they’re giving us a 1% pay increase, they are trying to make life difficult for us. People who have been at the company just a short while have had £500 pay rise while us ‘oldies’ have had £150 to put it in a nutshell. They’re saying that they’re trying to level out the pay structure. Experience means nothing.

I’m now in my 50’s and regardless of what the government says, companies do not readily employ older people. I just want an easy life at work but I want to be treated fairly. I want my experience to be worth something. But it seems that loyalty to a company means nothing. Unless I’m eager to climb over people, lick ass, and climb the ladder I’m considered worthless. And how many people in their 50’s want to do this? Ageism is alive and kicking in British companies regardless of what is being said in public.


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Why Work In A Call Centre?

I began to write a blog about the day to day experience of my working life. I’ve been working at the call centre for over 11 years now and this seemed like a good way of getting rid of stress and of laughing at some of the stupid things that can happen at work.

I have never mentioned the name of the company I work for – I don’t particularly want to be on the end of a lawsuit, although I sometimes think that being fired would come in very handy. I also don’t mention the names of any colleagues or customers for the same reason. Saying that I think I manage to convey what is going on reasonably well.

You may wonder why I’m working in a call centre. Well the reason is very simple. I got sick of being treated like a pack horse and being plied with responsibility while being paid peanuts.

I began my working life as an office junior after a year at secretarial college. I picked up the ropes very quickly and eight months later I landed a job as branch secretary/PA to general manager at a different company. A few years later I left to have my daughter.

After maternity I began working at a foundry as a buying assistant/materials controller. I loved it. I stayed for several years but in the end it was the pay that made me look elsewhere. Along came the position of secretary to three lawyers. After a few years there I moved on to a new company as materials controller. It was here that I had my eyes opened.

I remember one of the foreman on the shop floor complaining about his pay. He was in charge of people using machinery and would he would let me know if any raw materials were running low. He showed me his pay slip and said it was for one week but the company had short paid him. They were paying him more in one week then what I got for the month and I was far more qualified. I then found out that the guy who swept the shop floor and did the occasional delivery was on more than double what I was receiving. He had no qualifications whatsoever except a driving licence.

Well that did it. I wondered why I was working for pennies and being laden with so much responsibility. So I began to look at the job market. Guess what? I found a part-time job inputting data for the same money I was getting as materials controller. I went for it. Typing in figures and having my afternoons free. And it was a five-minute walk from where I lived.

After that I went into sales. I realised that this was where the money was and it was up to me to put the work in. No responsibility and I could double my basic pay easily every month with commission. I’ve done this now for several years.

Of course all good things come to an end. The commission was not compulsory so it could be removed at any time. Now the Financial Conduct Authority no longer want sales staff rewarded by monetary means, so the commission has disappeared.

Working in the call centre is no longer as profitable as it once was.

Long Term Service

I remember when I started work, many years ago, I was advised that it was always better to work at a company for a few years and then leave for a better job and more money. I followed this advice for quite a while, until I found my present job that paid loads in commission.

I’ve now been at the call centre for 10.5 years, and I’ve worked in 5 different departments. I’m very comfortable in the job, although there has been some ups and downs along the way. I’ve even thought that I may be there for a few more years yet.

Over the last couple of years I’ve found myself with more calls and more lines than other people. When I’ve queried this I’ve been told that it’s because of my experience. It’s made me feel under extra stress, and penalised because I’ve been there some time. On the other hand, it’s nice to be able to help colleagues if they have problems, and show them a few tips on the system.

With the changes in the company of late, many of which are due to the FCA who we are regulated by, a lot of the commission that we were earning is now being removed. We can’t do anything about this as it’s not compulsary. The company is also standardising the pay structure, which is something that is done in many other companies.

Personally I will be losing money as my bonus is being cut. Although we are gaining a pay increase, people who have only been at the company for a few years will be gaining as their basic is to be raised by 2-3 thousand so that it can be a standard rate. I’m on a higher basic because of the length of time at the company.

Now this is all making me wonder whether I have done the right thing by staying at the company so long. After my experience has been taken full advantage of, I now find that new people will be earning what I was on 2 years ago. It’s like a kick in the teeth, being told that new people are to gain a lot of money, while those of us who been there for many years are to be penalised. Some of my colleagues have been at the company 15 years or more.

Now, of course, I’m thinking of looking for another job. I’m pretty sure I won’t be the only person. I think it’s a real pity that loyalty and experience can be treated so flipantly and tossed aside with such ease.

Chinese Whispers

We’re having a lot of changes at work at the moment. There were briefings given out last week while I was on leave, so I’ve yet to get the full details. I have been given a brief overview by our lead agent, and also the opinions of my colleagues. I seem to be getting different information from each person though.

When we are given important information we each take in the bit that is important to us personally, and then we subtley adapt it to meet our requirements. We then pass this information to other people with the slight change, or coloured by our own opinions. This information can then either become good news or bad news.

I’d rather get the information from the proverbial horse’s mouth. I’m one of those people who can’t accept what I’m being told until it comes first hand, or I’ve experienced it, or I’ve done enough research to formulate an opionion based on both positive and negative information.

The current briefings are about pay and bonus structures. Very imporant stuff for any employee. I’ve decided to hold my opinion until I’ve had the full information. And although I will listen to the opinions of my colleagues, I will not allow them to worry me.

Margaret Road Wednesbury WS10 7QT 07505067286 naturalmatrixtherapy@outlook.com By appointment only, so please contact me to discuss available times.