While everyone else is taking the long weekend during the Holy Week with sands on their feet or sakura blooms in Japan above their heads, my brothers and sisters in Business Process Outsourcing industry are enduring the monotony of the cubicles. These are still normal work days after all.
Through my wanderings, I’ve met a lot of travelers who are call center agents and information technology specialists. We would hear “lang” suffixed on these occupations but part of the economic growth of the country is attributed to the industry. And hey, we share a good fraction to tourism too!
In our small chit chats, we can’t help but relate with struggles and benefits that only travelers from BPO industry will understand:
1. We maintain at least two calendars. One is the Philippine Holiday which we normally ignore. And depending on the accounts we hold, we have Australian, European and USA holidays to consider. We learn how to celebrate the Queen’s Day, Boxing Day, and Thanksgiving to name a few in the Philippines.
2. Presidential Proclamations about holidays are almost useless because Boss Approval overrules. #TunayNaBoss
3. Brightside, when booking plane tickets, holidays outside PH are off-peak in the radar of the airlines so the cost of trip is cheaper. Things get better when day offs fall on weekday too.
4. Whenever college and high school friends tag you in a get-together, we can’t decide immediately because the rotation schedule is not yet released.
5. Unless it is a company outing, we couldn’t organized a larger group getaway because of business continuity. There should be a sacrifice, an outcast if you will, that will man the queue.
6. Some weekends are not totally free. Because system upgrades are done during the times where the customers are not using the infrastructure.
7. Others bring smartphones for capturing memories of their travels. We bring ours, and even laptops, for emails and on-call emergencies. We are anxious yet hopeful that the automated OOO (out-of-office) replies will be respected.
8. Our eyes roll whenever the meeting time for an out-of-town weekender is a Friday night. The shift ends on a Saturday morning remember?
9. If we forgot the phonetic alphabet, we improvise like A is for Asia, B is for Boracay, C is for Chiang Mai, D is for Dumaguete.
10. We see leaves as good as cash. We have different names for SL. Sinungaling Leaves. Scheduled Leaves.
11. Human Resource people befriend us because they expect we know things like resorts where the company can hold outings or hotels where to stay.
12. It is possible for us to go the beaches straight from our shifts. Or back to our shifts straight from the airports.
13. That moment when locals around us speak a language that we don’t understand, “Anybody here knows Java, Python, C++ language?”
14. When the airline websites are buggy, we’re like “Where can we file JIRA ticket for this?”
15. So we join an open trip and it’s introduction time among participants. They learn that we’re working in an account known for its printer and they’re like “Our printer is broken. Can you fix it?”
16. Coffee is way of life. But when other non-traveling officemates invite you for Starbucks every day, we imagine the tickets that could have been bought by the price difference compared from a vendo machine. And the taste and satisfaction are not even close to Ifugao or Vietnamese coffee.
17. When we meet foreigners in our country, we can break the ice by speaking with the accent of their country because we have heard so much of them.
18. During no tickets in the queue, we use the Internet in bookmarking blog posts and travel quotes in minimized browser windows.
19. We are loved by our officemates because we bring souvenirs to them when we get back.
20. We are confused with humanity. We love the strangers we meet in travel but we sometimes hate the customers and clients we deal with.
This entry was posted on Friday, April 3rd, 2015 at 7:25 pm
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Posted in: List of Likes and Lifehacks