All talk, no walk….telephone banker

I work at Bank of America (or I should say used to work, I will be out of a job by August). I am a consumer banker at on of their call centers. I take customer’s calls, provide customer service and support and some financial counseling. I deal with the customers that have lots of money and try to upgrade their accounts and offer them more products and services so that if they ever think of leaving the bank it will become very hard for them to move all their financial assets, this in turn makes the bank more money. That’s basically what I do.

It sucks! On a positive note the benefits were very good. I had child care and tuition reimbursement. Paid time off and sick leave and good health insurance.

The atmosphere is depressing. You sit in a cubicle for 8 hours and have a headache by the time you get home from listening to the other 100 people that work with you talk and talk around you all day. Customers usually take everything out on you as if you are the one who is the cause of them not being smart enough to balance their checkbook. I have always been polite to customers who call because a lot of times the errors were the bank’s, and I must add that the technology we have to handle all the information we have and all the processing sucks! The systems are not very user friendly and that is why, many times, some employees say they’ll fix something for xustomers but they don’t. They dont want to deal the crappy systems. For being the one of the largest banks in the US, they could do better, I think. I know it’s not the customer’s fault so I always do what I promise them. Many times I have missed my breaks and eaten into my lunch time.

But I get it done. That however is very seldomly recognized nor appreciated by management.

But get this, Bank of America has a mission statement. One that they contradict ALL the time.

Doing the right thing is one of them. Well, I will have to say that is a load of crap. In the department I work in, we are responsible for meeting a sales quota. We have to per day sell so many checking accounts, so many savings, so many credit cards, CD’s and IRA’s. Now, if a customer calls and is mad and yelling at you because their account is negative you are supposed to offer them a credit card or a savings account!

To me doing the right thing is not to tell someone obviously likes to spend more than what they have a credit card!
Another thing, since I started working there, they would make us promote banking online and using self-service means so that call volume would not be so high (or so they said). Upper management told us that if we educated customers to self service their accounts, we would not have to put up with balance inquiry calls and mundane things of that nature and we could concentrate on taking more challenging calls and meeting our sales quotas.

A few months latr they told us that they were closing down the center and laid off 600 people. The reason: “They no longer need us because customers are self-servicing their accounts.”

What a slap in the face! We all felt like stupid little children being talked into giving up our candy.
Doing the right thing? Is leaving that many people, many of them single mothers, which are my friends, with out a job through trickery and a load of B.S. doing the right thing? If you ask me, Bank of America can shove their missions because that is the palce they came from to begin with. In a sick way I’m glad I lost my job.

I have a degree in international business and am passionate about the enterntainment industry. Someday I hope to be working for an international entertainment comany like Warner, HBO, Miramax, etc. I am trying to get in that field. Except it is very hard if you don’t have the right connections. I am also a very good public speaker and I am also interested in Public relations or Advertising. I think I will succeed in these areas because I am very outgoing and I can get along with anyone. Really. I could make some of those angry people that called the bank end up loving me by the time the call was over.

I see myself…hopefully geting not only a job but a carreer that does not require me to sit in a cubile. I want to travel, and show what I am capable of. I am fluent in Spanidh soI hope to take lots of trips to South America. I don’t ever want to work for another comapny that makes me feel so “disposable” like Bank of America did.

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