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Fired for a violation of company policy

by Elizabeth

I worked for ***** retention. They have a zero tolerance for call avoidance. I was in training from November to the first week in January. The training was to include 2 weeks of retention calls but due to the fact it was end of quarter and sprint wanted to end it with less churn our class did not take retention calls. We only took customer care calls which are different from retention. We had concerns and were told there would be coaches on the floor to help us since we did not have the opportunity to take and learn retention calls. That never happened. They put us on the floor cold. We had to wait to ask questions while maintaining AHT of 10 minutes. Often 2/3 other new hires were waiting for a manager along with seasoned employees. On February 24th I became ill during work and before leaving took a call from a man with a Business account. He was asking for discounts and had Business Essential Plan which I had 0 training on. No discounts are available for this plan and I told him this. He continued to press about discounts and I offered Account Services and transferred him to them. During training this number was available for us to transfer customers and still remains in the Sprint training class. It was my understanding on Business Accounts they had a point of contact and this was the proper procedure to get them to for assistance. However, my manager said this was not the case. When I asked her could I apply any discounts to this account she offered nothing, said no. Nobody was available at the time I had the call however, I thought this transfer valid and explained that to her. She said he had a regular sprint price plan on one set of numbers to which I responded even so, we are not able to apply any discount on a business or heirachy account. And he had the business essentials plan on most of the other lines. He spoke about receiving past discounts as well. None of this I was familiar with from training class. She then said it was still call avoidance because I did a transfer instead of asking more probing questions. She did not offer what probing questions, just mentioned he had a sprint plan on a few of his lines and that I did not look further into the account to find this. I explained this was a mistake and not a direct intention to avoid a call. I was sick and went home shortly after that call. Also, prior to the call I had to wait 45 minutes for assistance on another call. The EMT who was supposed to take issue resolve no calls was fired the next day for call avoidance so she was aware how difficult it was to get assistance in our group. She told me I was on a first level warning and said any call transfers had to be approved. I followed that instruction on every call thereafter. That was February 25th she provided this information. On March 5th near the end of my shift she took me into a room off the floor and said the first level warning she gave me came back to her and I was terminated because they have a zero tolerance on call avoidance. I told her it was clearly a mistake and mentioned we never had the opportunity in class to take retention calls with assistance before being placed on the floor. I had

been on the floor for less than 2 months but did make it past the 30 day probation. My idle time was the lowest in her team including employees who had been with Sprint for longer. I was not warned or reprimanded for any other issues. I also advised her I was very sick that day and went home early because it was difficult to work that way. I also made her aware on that day I did not feel up to handling calls due to illness. I think it was unfair to issue a first level warning with coaching and then a week later fire me. When I told her I was going to apply for unemployment she said the call was recorded. I told her okay but the point is I thought it was the correct procedure and did not repeat the mistake after the first level warning.

Also, other new and seasoned employees sit in idle to avoid calls. I had the lowest idle rate on our team and sent home a daily report to myself once because her attitude toward me was very rude from the beginning.

Other employees transfer calls and often the manager will tell us to transfer calls. After the first level warning I asked her on every call that required transfer and she approved them. Once I had to remind her about the first level warning when she asked, why are you not transferring the call? So, transferring is not reason enough to be terminated. A transfer to avoid a call is reason. However, in my case I was new and not aware the transfer was not proper and never did this before. I think there is a lack of consistancy in what management considers call avoidance. Also, when I was sick told her I had RA (rheumatoid arthritis) and was having difficulty coping that day due to pain. The cold weather we are experiencing has caused a slight flare. On that day I had a fever and a headcold...let her know I was not myself, having difficulty focusing and felt it best to end my shift and go home, which I did.

Hi Elizabeth,

You present your case for benefits very well. You didn't really ask me a question .. which is nice so I can just respond to with a little advice.

What you did well is really not of importance .. it's just a sidenote which supports that you weren't the type to be guilty of "intentional call avoidance".

So if the occurrence that caused your termination is examined or "listened to" it should be clear that you weren't just trying to slough off the customer.

Additionally, the lack of training becomes a relevant point .. since you missed out on that particular training.

From a customer point of view .. I have an issue with what I know of "call avoidance" policies.

Customer service reps who adhere to these policies .. regardless of the fact that I know what and why they are doing what they are doing .. are always what make me feel like I'm getting the runaround and my "issue" is not being heard.

Very frustrating for a customer, because I decide long before a rep does .. that they aren't the one to help me.

But because I know what I know .. I always keep the rep's job in mind and grin and bear the employer policies that are chewing up my time .. by the end of the call .. I almost feel like a "co-worker".

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fired within 90 probation period
by: Anonymous

I was fired today. Since coming in to work at 7a they had me lingering around "waiting for mngmnt" and they had me speak to like 4 different managers finally they made their descosion after my shift that they could not override and policy was they had to terminate me because of the 90 day probation. Situation is this. I called in (unscheduled) that same day went to the doctor and came positive for strep besides unable to speak i was contagious. I went back to work days after with a messed up voice but i worked. When i got home that day 12/31/2011 i was crying in pain for hours until i decided to go to the er 01/01/12 ends up being ear drum was swollen really bad infection unable to work due to headset aside from awful pain. Well point is although i had doctors note for every single day. Aside of me meeting my MATTS (retention) they had to fire me because probation period u cannot miss work. They said if i was out of the probation i would have been excused. They "felt bad" but they let me go. I don't feel bad because it was out of my control but i do feel sprint does play SOME dirty policies on customers and employees. I was exactly one week from 90 day probation to be up. But we will see if they prevail when i file for unemployment. OH! GET THIS. WHEN I got back i still had a cough and i decided to seclude myself and sat away from others. They made me sit closer and they said don't worry EVERYONE is sick in here. This is WFM telling me go ahead and spread the germs most of us are sick anyway. One note. Sprint is very rewarding but its so stressful. No joke i was ill my 2nd week on the floor due to constant pressure of comparison to experienced reps. But bonuses make up. LOL. About the rest doing call avoidance. Sorry to hear that. Most trainers show you how to avoid that. But yes sprint monitors everything and idle to them is like waisting $$ which is nonsense because were clocked in and were doing SOMETHING. Again seriously if anyone from Sprint is reading this. Don't be so mean to us new ppl by constantly sending us reminders how low ranked we are compared to. To long time employees who have been doing that for years. Idk about you guys but they wanted under 680 AHT. Or else we would get a write up. There's managers who let u go for dumb performance reasons just because you affect their bonus. Others like mine were just nice ppl willing to help. The fact that my manager did not pressure us we met our matts too bad i only had her for one week since i got fired. She did try helping me tho. That's why IM not cussing sprint out.

Forced to resign for transferring a call
by: Robin Bell

I worked for Sprint around the same time as Elizabeth and her and I had the same experience in training i.e. customer service calls only. When we got to the floor I did not see my supervisor for almost two weeks and had not met him prior. It was a nightmare, callers would be holding for what seemed an eternity while I looked for help in resolving the customer issues.

On 2/17/10 I was called over to my supervisors' desk and asked to listen to a call I had taken. I remembered the call because it had been tranferred to me from another department and the transferring rep stated the customer wanted money for her time; I told the rep I cannot issue credits but the call was tranferred to me anyway as was often the case. Our department was the dump for all sorts of garbage calls that the other departments did not know what to do with and we were forced to take those calls. Although I worked retention and was told the only calls we take are those calls whereby the customer clearly states they want to cancel.

He wanted me to put in writing my wrong doing which I felt I did nothing wrong and I was not going to put anything in writing. During this whole meeting he told me that I would be better off resigning to spare myself the humiliation of being walked out and also that Sprint would show my in a favorable status when contacted by perspective employers i.e. I was eligible for rehire. This is not true as I would later find out. Further, he told me that if I were to wait to be walked out and try to file unemployment Sprint would fight it and say I was fired for misconduct. I tried to hang in there and wait until they fired me but the stress was just too much. I was getting physically ill and my stress levels were through the roof.

I called him and told him I would take his advice and resign. Also, that same day about an hour earlier my co worker was also subjected to the same scenario and again for tranferring a call that should not have been tranferred to her. She was given the same options insofar as you are going to be terminated when DOnna C. returns within the next couple of days. Based on what she was told and because of the stress she too opted to resign; she had been there for 4 1/2 years but never worked under this supervisor who I believe had a problem with older women on his team.

Subsequently I was denied unemployment as was my co worker and now have my case under appeal.

I would appreciate any feedback from anyone that has had this experience and especially if they were able to have Sprint made accountable for these shawdy business practices as it relates to the treatment of their employees.

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