And it’s no surprise. Someone leaked that layoffs would be happening (today) weeks ago. AOL must be scratching their heads going “Who told?” Well we don’t know either. But we find it quite amusing.
Anyway, it should be called Happy Tuesday. Because people will just begin to see how much more life has to offer than a thankless, unrewarding job. A job that is one level above fast food, yet promised so much more.
To other “techs” in pseudo “technical” positions around the country. Think about this: If you have a hard time describing your job on a resume, that’s because your job is a joke. Real positions are well defined and easy to explain. If you have to think (like I did) and start listing out things you do instead of giving the name of a profession; your resume will not benefit from this job. Get out now.
Here’s what you can do: Go to school.
No matter how much it costs, or how much effort it takes. If you can afford it do it. At least get concrete certifications if you can’t make it to college. Though certifications are only as good as how up to date they are. Degrees are forever, keep that in mind. Getting an education is about the only reliable way to prevent yourself from being used as cheap labor. There are an unlimited amount of people out there that can fill a tech job. There aren’t an unlimited amount of them with degrees.
Anyway, I wish all those that were laid off well. I really do. Hopefully all will find more rewarding prospects in the future. It’s been real.
– Irqportzter #3
An evil has awakened in this land, and whilst my people fought for their very souls, you, AOL, LLC waged war against us!!!
As seen from a warehouse in Dulles, VA, it looks like AOL is getting their shit packed in, literally. Massive layoffs are imminent, my friends, and we can only hope they come swiftly. Someone will say that AOL will relocate to advertiser-friendly New York next spring. Someone will say what is lost can never be saved, I hope in this case, they’re correct.
These past few years have been excruciating and horrible. FST which was once a mecca of AOL tech knowledge, is now just a dumping ground for unwanted calls and pseudo-busy work to keep the funding coming. The management knows we have been trapped in a servitude of grim proportions, yet they fail to acknolwedge it. They pretend, “all is fine and dandy in this nest of love” though they too, are merely prisoners in this dead end job.
Our superior boss lives and works in VA, the stooge isn’t even on site. Though his shelter from perceived uselessness will soon itself become a ghost town.
I can’t believe that our developers know as much about this product as we do. The moment I knew AOL was doomed was when we asked the ACS developers how to fix ACS. They replied with “well, I could take countless hours and go through the code and scripts and eventually work out the bugs and have it working 100%, but thats what FST is for”, (semi-verbatim wording) That’s downright pathetic. In other words, developers lack sentience.
I only take solace in the fact that a real company, which had something to sell and wasn’t just in the right place at the right time – like AOL (but I digress) – a real company will simply laugh at their incompetence and send them packing to work at Burger King. That’s where that level of failure belongs.
Many senior techs are useless and unwilling to admit it. Especially the ones that have left and moved on to other positions, where their uselessness is hidden. When you asked them for their knowledge, they often answered with something off topic, if they don’t know the answer (which was often).
Me: “How do I manually uninstall Mcafee anti-virus (version whatever before we gave up on it)?”
Senior Tech: “Ummm, Have you tried add/remove programs?”
Me: “Umm, yeah how about answering the question I asked.”
Our team meetings have become a joke, we don’t even talk about technical issues and recent “data collection”. Instead, we play games like “tech trivia” and musical chairs. Very useful. When we did talk about technical issues, it was dominated by a few loud mouths who knew as much about teching as the people who used to work at the other callcenter.
I say “other” callcenter, because that’s all we are too, a callcenter. I may as well be selling Avon, because that’s about as useful as what will be on my resume from working here. It’s a useless, unrewarding place where you feel less and less human by the day. Since we’re going to close down soon anyways, why take calls anymore?. The data is irrelevant, counter-productive.
Heck, there’s only like 6-8 of us on the phones as it is, why don’t we just take some extra time off the phones and work on our resumes? I have found some useful info on http://www.howtowritearesume.net/. Let’s help one another escape this hell. Why wait til the ship sinks only to scramble and look for other work? Let’s be prepared ahead of time.
I wish the bell would toll soon for us, there is nothing here for me, I need the end to set me free.
Yes sah. We got canned here at AOL, as predicted. Our Tucson site will be closing in December 16th and along with it our jobs. We get one month severance package (yay). I only wish they would start the severance early so I could chill while finding another job.
In any case here is how the day went. On Wednesday, October 18th I went into work and I saw the Channel 13 news van. I figured, either someone got shot, or we’re getting laid off. It was that simple. And I was correct on the second account. I walked in and immediately was greeted by the Workforce management person. They had us go into a room where we listened to a Human Resources person give a spiel about why our site was getting shutdown, and what our benefits were. Well we know this was going to happen (refer to this article).
It was funny, because I was already going to jump the second I got another job offer, so this did not have the “scary” effect they supposed it would have on me. I do however, feel sorry for those who were counting on this job as it will no doubt affect them unless they can get employment quickly.
In any case, I left with a bottled water and a threat not to talk to the media or we risk losing our severance package. (Good luck figuring out who I am). Obviously that went over well. I don’t know why they didn’t want us talking to the media, maybe the media would paint them in a bad light because they are keeping India call centers open. But people should’ve known that was going to happen the second the India callcenter’s opened.
They don’t “augment” workforces with India, they replace them. And it’s so common now no one will make a big fuss when it happens. Any remaining employees working for Dell or any other big company that outsources, your jobs are in jeopardy whether your company admits it or not. I suggest education and training, and looking for a more reliable position. I will not give away my plans as I feel it may be used to identify me, but needless to say I will not be in bad shape.
For those who got canned, we salute you!
At one time there was a great deal of speculation concerning AOL layoff rumors. That speculation is no more. It is now clear that all of the Tucson sites will be laid off in the near future (i.e. less than 6 months from now).
It’s an inevitable state of affairs if you look at AOL’s changing business model. They are changing revenue to be advertisement based and not subscription based. To accelerate that, they are giving free service to those who have high speed and do not want tech support. Clearly they are stepping away from a software platform, and embracing one that is web based. Hence no need for techs (us).
To make the possibility even more clear, they admitted to needing to layoff 5,000 people (duh), 3,000 of which will come from Europe. The other 2,000 will likely be us here in Tucson, and whatever callcenters remain (I think Abequerque). It is our belief that India will stay on to be the last techs. Why cut the cheap ones first? (thinking like an idiot bean counter).
So anyway we post here to put any speculation to rest, and plan for the future. Yes we were those guys that walked you through deleting files and reinstalling CD’s. Yes we wrote disgusting articles shortly after talking with you. We were those guys.
We hold little ill-will towards our employer. Much like you would not hold ill-will toward a retarded kid that hits you with a baseball he was playing with. You can’t get mad at him, because he’s retarded. The same holds for our company. I could go into a lengthy diatrabe about corporate stupidity. Let me just say, I have never understood the figure of speech “right hand doesn’t know what the left hand is doing”, more clearly than I have in the years I’ve been working at this company. For those about to be canned, we salute you!