If you have talked with me, my skepticism with regards to Avyd and what they are doing should not be much of a surprise at this point. (I hesitate to talk about it much because there are good people I respect who are doing business at and with Avyd and I am of course always worried about causing hurt.)
I need to say something about this, though.
Today, they are talking about the support they’ll offer as part of their service:
Welcome to our support system, handled by full-time staff and custom made to service the avid gamer. #Avyd pic.twitter.com/97gqZD9lsE
— Avyd (@Avyd) June 21, 2016
This reminded me of the job posting they’d put up a couple of weeks ago, about which I’d intended to say something more directly.
The listing is here, but I’m assuming that it will expire at some point, so I’ll put the pertinent bits below:
- Customer Service Representatives are responsible for handling our Client’s highest level of service issues to ensure customer issues are resolved in an efficient and timely manner. Agents provide knowledge and expertise to all online customers to effectively resolve any service-related, while balancing both the needs of the customer and the business.
- Use empathy with the customer; allow them to vent frustrations, while staying in control of the conversation and maintaining focus.
- Must be able to multi task
- Follow up with customers to ensure issue has been resolved
- Will be answering customer support tickets, inbound calls, and support chats.
Successful Candidates will have:
- Previous Customer Service experience
- Proficient in typing and computer skills
- Energetic and motivated personality
- Gaming knowledge
- Available to work nights and weekends as needed
- Be fluent in English
- Team player
- High School Diploma or equivalent
What We Offer:
- Unparalleled work environment
- Unlimited growth from within
- Paid training
- Continued development beyond entry level
- Travel opportunities
- Career advancement into management
On its own, that’s mostly fine. It’s a lot of attention-splitting, and the bit about nights and weekends without specifically stating what that means is a little concerning.
And then you get to the stuff about “growth” from the support position. It’s so much of a focus that it’s literally half of the bullet points in the list of “What We Offer.” It’s a red flag, especially when you hit this part:
Job Type: Part-time
Salary: $10.00 /hour
I don’t suppose I need to state that this is in an office and not remote, because the job posting should lead you in that direction on its own.
This is troubling because it doesn’t see support as a worthwhile career in and of itself. I am growing to understand that my current employer is somewhat unique in this, but I want to see the idea and the respect for support professionals continue to grow.
User support has been my full-time, salaried and benefited career for the last six years. It supports my entire household. I have had different responsibilities and been on different teams, but through the whole thing, I have been well-appreciated and been given the ability to build my career on having pride in the fact that I make our customers’ and clients’ lives easier, and that the ability to do so in an exceptional way is deserving of being a full-time employee.
The wage and (lack of) benefits in this Avyd job posting is sadly reflective of how a lot of tech sees support. Support is a place where you go to wage slave until you earn yourself a place as a supervisor, when you make a bit more and maybe get full-time, and then after even more time you might end up in charge of support for something and possibly get a salary and benefits. Or you have the (often just a) pipe dream of learning another skill and changing job responsibilities, which is seen as a promotion simply because you aren’t doing support.
I’m proud to work somewhere that prides itself on seeing professional support as a career, helping people build that career by supporting them and helping them develop, and giving those people good compensation, good opportunities, and good resources with which they can make the services we provide amazing experiences for the customers who pay for them. We make all employees who don’t work in support do a rotation in support every year, and every new hire regardless of position does front-line support for the first three weeks.
User support and respect for the people who work it is foundational to the culture here, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. No matter your industry, I encourage you to consider making it just as important to your company as well.
And yes; we are hiring.