Contact Center(s): Teleperformance Portugal
Project(s): Friser (Pescanova) – the first of dozens
Function(s): Sales, Customer Support and Recruitment Coordinator
Duration: 19 years
Currently: CCTalents – General Manager
Professional website: www.linkedin.com/in/a
Birthplace: Lisbon, Portugal
Music: The River, Bruce Springsteen
Movie/TV Series: The Right Stuff
Food: Brás style Codfish
Brings a smile: Life itself
Social website: www.facebook.com/antonio.alfac
What did you thought a contact center would be like?
Back in 1996 I knew about it through some college buddies that were working in the company; that made me apply to earn some money while studying. I didn’t knew much about it, only that I would be picking up phone calls – something I avoided at all costs at home. Tried it… and stayed there for almost 20 years!
Typical day in the project?
Arrive on time, log in the system and wait for calls to be automatically routed. I started at this funny service, back then, home-delivery of frozen goods. We sold the lot – baby carrots, hake, Brás style cod, etc. – yet all frozen. The breaks between calls allowed for a quick chat with colleagues; the same happened when there where not many calls. The team’s work environment in the company was amazing. Those were four fun hours a day, but in fact that was just the first of many projects.
I know no other like it. I think the majority of people don’t even dream about the friendship ties you can create in such an environment. In my case (as many others I’ve witnessed) I also had the bonus of getting to know the woman of my life.
Luck but also hard work, of course. After being there for 8 months I was offered a supervisor position; to accept it, I asked to be able to perform the internship from my studies, Organizational Psychology, at Teleperformance. As there was no internal recruitment department, I challenged the company to create it myself and that became a story spanning two decades. In the meantime, I also laid the foundation stones for the quality and training departments, being responsible for the latter for a long time, among other initiatives that allowed me to grow as a person and as a professional.
So how is it, then, to work at a contact center?
It’s a great career opportunity. It has a great work environment that allows for you to build a fabulous CV, project after project; more than anything it’s the kind of job that can be performed by people from all ages. I was told many times on my first interview that this is not a dream job, and one can accept that argument but as a matter of fact, for me personally and for many others it was a lifetime opportunity.
We’re launching CCTalents, which comes to fill a gap in the recruitment market, that is, contact center specialization. We’ll raise awareness about all of Portugal’s contact centers, showing visitors how solid can careers be in this sector.