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September 23, 2018

Employee Referral Program (ERP)

If there's one perk in the call center (BPO) industry that I haven't avail for the past few years, it will definitely be the referral system. Due to the high attrition rate of agents in the BPO industry (either they're terminated, resign due to fatigue or found a higher paying job), there is always hiring. You can even walk-in anytime to a call center and you'll definitely be entertained. Some BPOs even have a dedicated recruitment hub that caters to job applicants on a daily basis, even Saturdays.

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I am actually thinking of making the most of this referral system. After all, it's usually 10,000-20,000 depending on account. These are the usual referral incentives that we can get for every successful applicant that we refer. Most of the time it's given in 3-4 pay-outs: one hired, after 3 months and once regularized. Sometimes, I think of printing out referral slips/leaflets with my contact number and email address on it but that will incur some cost and time to distribute it. I would have to spend a day probably near Citibank Eastwood for distributing leaflets.

Since I have a blog, I could probably advertise it here. Every single poster that appears on Concentrix's Facebook page, I can probably re-post it here. I can also try to be a member of Facebook groups that caters to job applicants or probably join a recruitment caravan on malls and job fairs. The possibilities of getting referrals are endless. However, I might need to invest some time also in giving tips and practicing these applicants for the question and answer portion of the interview to increase my changes of having successful referrals.

I will have to create articles on tips and tricks to pass that interview. Well, if you're a high school graduate and badly need to work, then I would highly suggest you apply for a call center job. If you're lucky, you might find a BPO center that offers continuous learning program, provided that you can still function efficiently as an agent. If you're single, then you could definitely earn from your salary as a call center agent and take units in college. The other thing that's advantageous in the call center industry is that promotions are always there (again, due to attrition).

Here are some tips if you wanted to work in the call center industry:

1. Start with an Internet Service Provider (ISP) account. These accounts are always hiring and has the least requirements in the call center industry. You can start at a local ISP account, but I suggest you go international. The best way to learn the basics of supporting an ISP account is visit a local computer shop or a friend that has Internet at home. Ask them how to do basic troubleshooting and familiarize yourself with the equipment involve -- the computer (monitor, CPU, keyboard, mouse), the telephone cable (RJ11), the modem, the ethernet cable (usually yellow or blue and a.k.a. RJ45), the browser (Firefox, Internet Explorer) and filters.

2. Start watching American TV shows and movies. You don't need to have the accent. A neutral, Filipino accent is okay as long as it's understandable and doesn't have a very strong regional accent. Try conversing with your friends in English more often.

3. Prepare at most, 2-page resume. Don't follow the format of those Bio-Data that is being sold. Just be simple and concise with your resume. Don't put your picture on your resume yet. Reserve it after the job offer. You also don't need to mention your height and weight, parents name, etc. Mention your Education, Work Experience and Seminars attended as well as your hobbies and interests.

4. Practice typing faster. Use free typing tests on the Internet or download a copy of Typing Master. Aim for a speed of at least 25 words per minute and 90% accuracy. It will also be helpful if you could learn how to Google for answers faster using the correct keywords based on the questions. Also, try to answer abstract questionnaires or those number sequence questions. It will also be helpful if you'll increase your vocabulary and your synonyms, antonyms and homonyms. Reading a dictionary will also be helpful.

5. The most common question in the initial interview is: "Tell me something about yourself that is not in your resume". The aim is for you to speak up and express yourself in English. Just make sure that you don't mention topics that you're not comfortable talking because from this initial question, the interviewer will derive more questions. Talk about your family, your hobbies, and other things that you are very much involved in.

6. Next questions are usually the descriptive questions. Questions like: "How do you sell a pencil/ice cream to a blind person/Eskimo?" The interviewer will like to know how you convey ideas over the phone. It will be easier if you can do video calls to clients but that will probably take a few more years. Practice describing something over the phone. Other questions might be "How did you get here (at the venue) from home?". The interviewer wanted to know how you will ask a person to perform task or navigate. It's very important that your instructions are clear.

7. Prepare for other questions like "Why do you want to work in a call center?" (to try something new, improve your skills and earn), "What is your advantage over the other applicants?" (try to mention that you are all qualified for the job but you're more attentive to details or happier or more dedicated at work). You can YouTube these questions and try to personlize your answer a bit.

"How do you see yourself 5 years from now?" (you should still be part of the company you're applying for).

8. Don't lose hope if you don't get hire after applying 5, 6 or 7 times. I got hired after applying 20 times. Beat that. Just take note of the questions that you get in the initial or final interview. Google for better answers. Practice it with a friend then re-apply.

9. It will not harm if you could Google a little info about the company that you're applying for. Also, if you're asked if you believe that the customer is always right, please answer YES (although in reality, it's not). It will be plus points if you ask a question if the interviewer ended his/her interview by saying "Do you have any questions?"

Good luck on your job application! You may also email your resume to elmerlovesoreo(at)gmail.com so I could proofread it and offer suggestions on how to improve it. Then I'll forward it to our recruitment personnel for a possible appointment with you.

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September 19, 2018

To All The Boys I've Loved Before

I first heard about this movie on Twitter. I guess it was Inquirer's Preteen account that posted a picture of Peter Kavinsky with the title "To All The Boys I've Loved Before". I thought it was a gay movie and Peter Kavinsky was the protagonist.

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Aside from Noah Centineo (Peter Kavinsky), the other cute guy in this Netflix movie is Israel Broussard as Josh.

Then, I've been hearing some rave reviews on the movie, which was released from Netflix. So when I saw that it's available for download, I jumped into the bandwagon and watched it. It's not a gay movie and the protagonist is a teenage girl named Lori Jean. Peter Kavinsky turns out to be one of her 5 crushes / love a few years ago.

The protagonist looks like Nadine Lustre to me and the movie looks very much like a Nadine-James Reid movie. What started out as a contract between Lori Jean and Peter Kavinsky turned into something... real. I have no idea why the plot and twist of the film really reminds me of a Filipino movie.

Anyway, the movie is good and it's about puppy love, family, friendship, high school, peer pressure and knowing one's self and worth. Noah _ who played Peter Kavinsky is commendable for his acting. He's good and I believe he portrayed the character well. However, I find the actor who played _ to be more attractive and expressive with his eyes. It's probably just me.

To All The Boys I've Loved Before is avaible on Netflix and it's worth watching.

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Noah Centineo stars as Peter Kavinsky.

September 14, 2018

"Me Before You"

"Me Before You" is a 2016 romantic starring Sam Claflin (from the Hunger Games) and Emilia Clarke. It's a tearjerker but also shows other aspects of life -- being jobless (or how sudden a change of job status could change), family, inequality between the rich and the average household, love, life after an accident, personal happiness, euthanasia, wills and testament, etc. Sam Claflin stars as rich guy Will who suffered paralysis from the waist down after an accident. He has a nice family, rich, has a gilfriend, and a nice job. Everything changed when he was hit by a speeding motorbike.

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He was an athletic guy -- into cliff diving, snowboarding and other extreme sports. He ended up in a wheelchair and being assisted by a male caregiver. His mother hired Louisa (Emilia Clarke) as a second caregiver to persuade her son Will to continue living. Well, Louisa doesn't know this yet at the start of her work. She just discovered this after evesdropping on the conversation between Will's parents after receiving a letter from Switzerland from a company named Dignitas.

She felt that she have to give up this job because she doesn't want to be part of this -- as her mother called it, murder. However, since she needed the money, she decided to continue working but this time, she researched ways on how to make the most of the time Will has. That's when she came up with this bucket list that looks pathetic for Will but he just played along, not for himself, but for Louisa so that she could experience other things as well. So they went watching horse race, tried to eat at a very expensive restaurant, watch a classical music presentation and went to this dream vacation at a beach resort.

Unfortunately, even after being happy with her, he's still determined to continue his euthanasia. He agreed for a 6 months extension to this decision for his parents. The film ended with Louisa being in Paris, wearing the yellow and black "stockings" he gave her on her birthday, eating croissant and having coffee in one of the most romantic part of Paris. Will mentioned that this is his most favorite place but he doesn't want to return to this place in a wheelchair. He said that he missed the time he was here and being noticed by all the French girls. Louisa was reading his letter explaining that he left her some fortune, not enough to live a very comfortable life, but will give her freedom to go places.

I felt bad for Sam's character since he's filthy rich and there are a thousand ways to enjoy life even in a wheelchair. However, his character explained it very well. The justification for his euthanasia. Each person has his or her definition of happiness and a certain way of living one's life. This is not the way Sam's character wanted to live his life. Thus, euthanasia. This is in extreme contrast with the mother of Louisa who wears a crucifix. She's the voice of the Catholic teaching that euthanasia, for whatever reason, is still murder. In this movie, the European support for euthanasia outweighs the belief of the mother of Louisa. It's truly something to ponder about.

Aside from being a romantic, yet tragic, movie... "Me Before You" is worth watching. It reminds us of our humanity -- which we should treasure each and every day that we're living. Find one reason to be thankful when you wake up in the morning. In Sam's case, he said that it was Louisa. I like the soundtrack of the movie -- featuring 2 songs of Ed Sheeran. I also love the acting of the girl -- it's very real and shows true emotion from a genuinely caring girl.

Thumbs up to my officemates Ryan and Jho for suggesting this movie.

July 30, 2018

Theo and Hugo

It is a borderline French gay porn and indie film set in Paris and was released in 2016. The scene starts in a club where orgies are held. Theo and Hugo met, had sex and then decided to go out on a stroll in the streets of Paris at dawn. The streets are mostly empty. They rode a bike, bought some kebal from a store that opened early, went to a park to talk more. I can't remember whether Theo was the top during the sex act, but the top guy decided to penetrate the bottom with a condom (they refer to it as a rubber).

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The conversation turned into a heated argument because the bottom is apparently HIV positive but is taking meds regularly. The bottom guy encouraged the top guy to immediately visit a hospital after calling the AIDS hotline. They proceeded to the hospital one at a time. Eventually they meet there, and got advised from the nurse. This is where the education part about HIV happened. Apparently, if they take some pills within 24 hours (and continued it until the 28th day), the risk of being infected with the AIDS virus will be gone. They were advised to go back to the hospital 4 days after to have HIV tests.

After going to the hospital, they decided to go to the top's apartment, riding the 1st metro train for the day and chitchatting with an elderly rider. Upon reaching the apartment (which he refer to as a maid's chamber), a hot scene was shown where the bottom really appreciated the top's asset. Eventually they decided to visit the other guy's apartment.

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This film reminds me of the 2008 Pinoy movie "Day Break" starring Coco Martin, wherein there are only 2 actors in the entire movie and the movie's settings is just within 24 hours. The film is mostly dialogue's between the two characters. In Theo and Hugo, it's about meeting a potential boyfriend -- how it all starts. Sometimes, love can really happen in weird places. Sometimes, all it takes is eye contact. Towards the end of the movie, I believe it was Theo who sums up a gay relationship -- where it starts, where it's headed, how long it might take (same 20 years), and eventually breaks up. What's important is how the two parties enjoy their time together.

I love this film.

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