Amtrak to close Riverside call center, eliminating 550 jobs

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Amtrak to close Riverside call center, eliminating 550 jobs

Postby ThirdRail7 » Thu Nov 15, 2018 7:45 pm

Does anyone want a building in California? They'll probably get a pretty penny for it.


Please allow a brief "fair use quote:

https://www.pe.com/2018/11/14/amtrak-to ... -550-jobs/

Griffin’s memo also noted about 90 percent of Amtrak’s customers now book their travel online and that over the last five years, the number of calls received at contact centers has declined by close to 3 million calls. He wrote that “at our busiest time, only 25 percent of our agents are on the phone at the same time.”

Workers and union leaders who represent Amtrak employees, however, claim Amtrak has contracted with a third-party operator in Florida and are paying workers there less money. The minimum wage in Florida is $8.25. Griffin’s email does not mention the outsourced operation.

The memo did say Amtrak will sell the Riverside facility.
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Re: Amtrak to close Riverside call center, eliminating 550 j

Postby eolesen » Fri Nov 16, 2018 12:28 am

Hardly a shock. The same downward trend has been happening in the airline and hotel space in general, and it doesn't help that Kalifornia has the country's most complicated labor laws.
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Re: Amtrak to close Riverside call center, eliminating 550 j

Postby ThirdRail7 » Fri Nov 16, 2018 10:23 am

I still think 90% is a high number. Additionally, there is a lot more to their jobs than making reservations. At any given moment, there is a some sort of disruption, chaos or general mayhem on part of the system. People need to know their options. Sure, you can robo call them to let them know their train is cancelled, but what happens when they call up to find alternatives? Are you going to keep them on hold forever as their options dwindle? It would be reasonable if the website kept up with the disruptions in real time but that page often lags...if it is updated at all.
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Re: Amtrak to close Riverside call center, eliminating 550 j

Postby ryanov » Thu Nov 22, 2018 1:35 am

I've waited nearly a full hour (might have been more -- I can't really remember) on the phone during a not-so-long ago outage (I believe it was after a storm last March) and there's no good way to deal with rebooking options without calling on the phone. That's one of several things that there's no alternative for.
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Re: Amtrak to close Riverside call center, eliminating 550 j

Postby Tadman » Thu Nov 22, 2018 2:33 pm

Agreed, the agents can be far more helpful than the website. That said, you have to holler at Julie for five minute first. I can’t stand Julie, she’s one step from useless.
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Re: Amtrak to close Riverside call center, eliminating 550 j

Postby dowlingm » Tue Nov 27, 2018 6:11 am

Does seem odd for Amtrak to resolve overcapacity by moving to a scenario where all call centres are in a single time zone...
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Re: Amtrak to close Riverside call center, eliminating 550 j

Postby umtrr-author » Tue Nov 27, 2018 8:35 pm

dowlingm wrote:Does seem odd for Amtrak to resolve overcapacity by moving to a scenario where all call centres are in a single time zone...


No, but it can certainly discourage people from calling in... or riding Amtrak in the first place...

...and where have we heard this before-- oh, that's right, a non-trivial amount of the passenger rail system before Amtrak...
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Re: Amtrak to close Riverside call center, eliminating 550 j

Postby Suburban Station » Tue Dec 04, 2018 8:03 am

Formal negotiations between Amtrak and the Transportation Communications Union on relocation benefits were scheduled to start Friday, Nov. 30, said Sal Rodriguez, assistant national representative of the union. The two-week communication lag, he said, was a union strategy to marshal political support.

https://www.pe.com/2018/11/30/shaken-am ... elocation/
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