Cookie Consent by Free Privacy Policy Generator 📌 Just had my first interview in 3 years


✅ Just had my first interview in 3 years


💡 Newskategorie: Programmierung
🔗 Quelle: dev.to

I was laid off in January and it's been a struggle since then. I've applied to over 300 jobs and I have several iterations of my resume, which I now think is perfect (for now). Although many people have advised against it, I've started applying directly to company websites out of frustration that Easy Apply listings bore no fruit.

I'd also decided that although I am looking for a job in IT, I needed to spread my net a little wider in case I needed to start from "the bottom" in customer service and then perhaps move up into the company's IT department if the opportunities arise.

I applied directly on this ISPs website , took a 30 minute assessment ( this might have been the only fun assessment I've ever taken), and they called me the next day. I had a phone interview with HR/gatekeeper and was invited to an in-person interview the next day. I purchased a suit last week just in case of an occasion like this, so I was prepared and received many compliments when I arrived!

The Good

First Impression

I felt truly welcomed when I arrived by HR! She was vibrant, and spent some time with me explaining when she first came to this country, how she made it to the company and her career at the business over 13 years. She explained benefits, the company culture, answered any questions that I had, and gave me interview tips.

Environment

The work area was mostly a cubicle set up and but it wasn't crowded and everyone had their own personal space. While walking around, it was nice to see people express their personality with pictures, action figures and the awards they've received while working there. It also helped that it didn't seem hectic. I've worked in call centers before, and everyone was miserable since it felt like you couldn't take a second to think or breathe before the next call came in.

Talking to the managers

The interviewers seemed very down to earth, and the questions were basic, but I did have some concerns (more on this later), but overall they seemed liked active listeners who genuinely wanted to hire the right people for the job. Everyone seemed to stress that you cannot take anything personal in customer service and I made sure to let them know that I understood as I've worked in customer service in several industries. But now that we're in the age of the internet where everything depends on your connection, I can understand why people can be quick to become irate and why it's important to put yourself in the customer's shoes to see their perspective.

Room For Growth

This was one of the reasons that I applied to this company, because I felt that since they are one of the top ISPs, they would have room for me to grow, even if I were to start in customer service, over time, I could move into the cybersecurity department of the company.

The pay is great

No need for an explanation here -- the pay is much higher than most call center jobs and you get free internet and you only pay part of your phone bill.

Option For Remote

Once you are trained and your performance is satisfactory, you are offered the option to be put on a waitlist for working at home. If your performance suffers while working remotely though, they'll make you work in-office again!

The Bad

Metrics

Metrics, metrics, metrics. If I recall correctly, they had 5 different metrics that they evaluated you by, but from what I gathered, time spent on the call and First Call Resolution (FCR) were the most important.

One example was if a customer calls and you scheduled an appointment for a technician to stop by, and maybe you forgot to tell them that they can check for their appointment date and time in the company app, if the customer calls back within a week, and they are asking for their appointment date and time, that will lower your score for FCR. I was a bit put off by this as, there are so many people that would forget, or you have the folks that will call in because they would rather call instead of checking an app ( I am not sure why people do this, it's like they are allergic to convenience), and that could mess up your metrics.

Call center energy

Let me explain lol If you've worked in a call center before, you know you're not expecting for people to be walking around , singing songs and smiling. Although, I mentioned earlier that it seemed like a calm environment, everyone still had a look of "OMG I really cannot wait to go home."

Listen, I know nobody wants to be at work all day; it's hard to explain, but if you've worked long enough, you know the difference between wanting to go home because of hard work and wanting to go home because of the combo of hard work and this job being something you're only doing to make ends meet.

The Ugly

AI grading transcripts

The first interviewer mentioned that they have transcripts of your conversations and AI evaluates the transcripts, then grades it as Neutral, Good or Bad.

YUCK.

I do understand the convenience of using AI for this, but I also feel like this is a slippery slide. There are so many things that could go wrong with this, like nuance/context, slang being used that can be misunderstood from the customer's end, etc. I know that using AI saves the company lots of money and they've probably saved a ton from getting rid of call auditors, but it still feels so icky for me.

Personal nitpick

There were two interview questions that irked me, but this is a personal issue:

Where do you see yourself in two years?

I don't know. That wasn't the answer I gave but... I don't know. Two years ago, I didn't know I'd be laid off and looking for a new job. Two years ago, I was happy at a company and wanted to grow there ( I did, but I still wanted more!). I made it through two lay off rounds and then was laid off on the third.

I'm not sure what answer was expected here -- perhaps the usual " I see myself here working as a supervisor, yadda, yadda", but this economy has been way too volatile for me to even think about that. I bob and weave, then get in where I fit in.

Are you interviewing with other people?

I answered , " You are the first." Instead of answering yes, because I didn't know how to answer that. I felt it was a strange question and wondered if they would pass on me if they felt I had other options.

Later on, I asked folks on Facebook, and a hiring manager and an executive recruiter advised that I always answer yes. The reason is , more than likely, they are interested in hiring you, however, Hiring managers want to gauge if they should snatch you up right now, or put you on ice until they look at other candidates. I feel this is such a slack footed way to engage as if you have a quality candidate, why not just snatch them up right away, especially if you have several spots for the same position?

It almost feels like your partner knowing you want to get married and then they only propose because you're leaving lol Weird.

Overall, I gained so much from this experience! As someone who knows their interviewing skills are their weakness, I know that I did well with the two interviews and there were minimal "ums". I kept myself calm, gave thoughtful answers and remembered to ask questions for the interviewers -- after all, I am interviewing them as well!

I received two more voicemails with requests for interviews, and I have a video interview on Tuesday which I am studying for all weekend. Whether I get the job or not, I'm so happy for the practice!

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