What is an ideal career for a college graduate?
By Dylan Griffiths, Global Support Centre Co-Ordinator
So what is a media and communications graduate doing on the phone, talking to an engineer about cleaning fibre at a telecoms tower somewhere in Singapore? Now more than ever, career paths are long and winding roads where you are propelled as much by circumstance as qualifications, where transferable skills and a rounded education may be the most valuable assets you have.
I started work at the Indigo Global Support Centre (GSC) just over a year ago having heard from a friend that it was interesting work with real career prospects. (The GSC provides support services for our global customers) He had already been promoted and was enjoying the work. My concern, as I filled in the application form, was that I didn’t have an engineering background. Even though the job description didn’t ask for it, I was worried that I might be out of my depth.
What I discovered is that recruitment is synonymous with training in a company like Indigo, and you get to learn on the job. Coming straight out of college, it was daunting at first but the first few months were made easier by the professionalism of the people around me. Indigo provides a friendly and welcoming atmosphere any young person wants when they start a job; I was mixing with many people of different ages and backgrounds who were all willing to help me progress.
New comfort zone
I now find myself dealing every day with big-name global clients. Maintaining a good rapport with customers is essential because it’s what the support side of Indigo’s business is all about. On the other side, you have to be able to hold your own in technical conversations with engineers.
Our purpose-built GSC is the first point of contact for clients when they have a problem and it’s my job to connect them to our engineers who can fix it. We support over 10,000 sites in more than 90 countries, so it’s never dull with no two days the same. My role as a support co-ordinator is very much the middleman, the facilitator for resolving a wide variety of issues.
Early trepidation about spending so much time on the phone is a distant memory; the first confused encounter with Salesforce Field Service Lightning – the software we use for managing appointments – long forgotten. It’s amazing how quickly you can feel comfortable with something that seemed so unfamiliar at the start, how talking telecoms has become second nature.
I’ve had shifts where 60 engineers are out on jobs across half a dozen countries, so you need to be good at juggling multiple tasks. Of course, it helps that I have a team leader on hand with 13 years’ experience if I get stuck. All the time at Indigo you are part of a knowledge pool that you can readily tap into if a problem feels insurmountable.
Gaining skills and experience
All the time I’m learning new skills. There is experience gained with using software tools like Salesforce, but I’ve also acquired people skills that are harder to evaluate but just as important. Although it’s not face-to-face contact, you learn to build rapport with people, particularly engineers who you will be speaking to the most during busy days.
You become quietly accomplished at reading people’s moods, whether it’s a client in a panic or an exhausted engineer. Indigo social events, such as the company Christmas party or team-building activities, are really important as well as great fun, because you can put a face to the engineers you deal with every day and there’s an opportunity to get to know each other better.
Another attractive aspect of working for Indigo is the chance for professional development. As May Cook alluded to in an earlier blog, GSC employees can follow a natural career path, becoming a co-ordinator, call handler and eventually team leader. Career development is something that is actively encouraged, and you feel like you will be rewarded if you show willing to grow as a professional while contributing to the growth of the company.
Transitioning from GSC to Field Engineer is another option. Working in a contact centre, you are at a different end of the process in terms of how the business works, but pathways are available to help you make the shift and train up if that is the direction you want to travel.
Perhaps the biggest revelation has been my appreciation of telecoms as a business sector. We all have a sense of its importance because we all spend so much time on connected devices, but it’s fascinating to get the inside track and see how the industry actually works. And from the pipeline of vacancies within Indigo, I get a real sense of growth and opportunity. In these uncertain times, it’s great to have some certainty and work in a sector that shows no signs of slowing down.
If you fancy a career in Indigo Telecom Group, contact us today.