Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Provincial rate

(Click on the image for larger viewing. These figures are not accurate. These are just assumptions, symbolic, sarcasm, or however a reader may call it.)
Working in a call center or BPO (business process outsourcing) company, comparing basic pay from previous companies is not uncommon. It was the first training day for an American account, a Fortune company. Basically, each of the new employee types his details virtually for ATM payroll, company badge, etc. So we had time to discuss anything, especially basic pay, benefits, incentives and mostly matters related to money.
One guy left a company after a year, with zero back pay. That's from a 3-letter named company that used to be manufacturing computers but has been an outsourcing company as well. Another guy left a company after receiving the contract signing bonus in a month from date of hire. Some of them left their previous companies after unresolved salary disputes. They call it salary dispute when you don't get the pay based on the time you have worked. I have learned a lot of corporate terms in Manila. What is really new to me is the term 'jumper.' One is a jumper when he works from one BPO to another. I don't really know the criteria of becoming a jumper. Maybe it's having more than one BPO employment in a year.
The company I am working with right now has training bond or cash bond for 6 months. That is, you will have to pay a certain cash when you quit before reaching 6 months of residency in the company. This is however fair for the companies. They spend money for the training expenses like salary for the trainer, electricity, handouts, trainees' salary, etc. It's also one way of dealing with spoiled Manila agents who keep on quitting work prematurely. I was once a nurse recruiter and it's a trouble when manpower suddenly changes due to staff immediate resignation or AWOL (absence without leave).
Another fact that I learned today, which is sadly true and is happening, is the difference of salary between agents in Manila and provinces. In Davao City, an agent earns a monthly rate of PhP 9,500 to 12,500 compared to a PhP 14,000 or more in Manila. These figures are not accurate but the trend is.
Manila, Davao, or Cagayan de Oro. If these cities are working for XYZ American company, they receive calls from the same country. They handle the same irate callers. They get the same surveys: bad customer surveys that may cost them their jobs. Same job roles and descriptions: talk while documenting, talk even though the person on the other line curses you, apologize, apologize and apologize (even though the customer warned you not to apologize again [but you have to verbalize it as per protocol]). Same protocols. Not the same compensation. A company saves a lot if established in the provinces. Cheaper space rental, cheaper utilities (water, electricity), cheaper taxes, and cheaper salaries to provincial fellows.
If XYZ American company pays QRS BPO $2 per minute of call received, the former pays the same amount to any BPO, irrespective of its geographical location.
Call center agents must be paid equally all over the Philippines. Same salary range for agents on the same graveyard shifts.

No comments: