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News : Alorica Shuts Down Second Plant

#contactcenterworld, @OfficialAlorica

Kingston, Jamaica, April 14, 2020 -- Call centre Alorica has shut down its Kingston branch – its second closure in as many days – as concerns swirl about coronavirus contact tracing and the vulnerability of employees in the business process outsourcing (BPO) sector.

Approximately 140 staffers at Alorica’s Portmore offices have, over the last 48 hours, undergone testing for the new coronavirus after two co-workers were confirmed as positive for COVID-19.

"Continuing with our commitment to keep our employees health and well-being top of mind, we have decided to temporarily close our Kingston site as well, starting tomorrow (Tuesday)," read a statement issued to workers Monday which The Gleaner obtained.

But workers who routinely utilise buses hired by Alorica have admitted to being at risk of contracting COVID-19 because of cross-training of staff between the Portmore and Kingston offices. Kingston staff also interface with Portmore staff when they arrive at the Portmore Informatics Park for transit to the city.

The BPO staffers have called for "a clear transportation policy" to be put in place to alleviate their fears.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, an employee of Alorica said that she was alarmed that no adjustment has been put in place to deal with issues related to the group transportation policy.

"I am very worried now because it seems to me that the same bus that takes people here to the Portmore branch could be the same one being used to take us to the branch in Kingston," said Simone Parsons*.

"I wait here (outside the Alorica Portmore branch) daily for the staff bus and I have never been so worried, because now that two persons are positive, it is easy to do the maths.

"Scores may be positive and some may use the same bus," she said.

Calls placed to at least three different Portmore-based call centres, including Alorica, went unanswered yesterday.

High-density incubators

BPOs have been a fast-rising job sponge in Jamaica over the last decade, accounting for a workforce of almost 40,000. The Holness administration has exempted call centre workers from curfew orders that are set to expire on April 21.

BPOs are high-density environments that could be incubators for viral spread, especially if social-distancing guidelines are flouted, or where compliance is a logistical nightmare. Alorica Portmore reportedly has about 600 workers.

Yesterday, scores of workers were tested at Alorica Portmore.

One health official said it was a prudent move by the South East Regional Health Authority to get a handle on the fast-spreading virus by testing those who would have likely been in contact with the positive employees.

"Persons are being tested at this location based on the numbers expected, as there would not be enough spacing at a health centre, and also we wanted to make sure those coming actually work here. We can control and confirm that they are from Alorica," said a healthcare worker who identified herself as Nurse Smith.

Beatrice Larmond*, an Ibex call-centre employee who boarded the company’s contracted bus to Spanish Town yesterday, told The Gleaner that she, too, depends heavily on the service, but is now reviewing her options.

"This is such a scary time for everybody, and even on the staff bus, I try very hard not to touch any rails or seating. Nothing is provided for us while on board, not even little hand sanitiser, so I keep my hands off everything and wear my mask as well," she said.

One bus driver said that he discontinued the sanitisation of hands because he was the victim of disrespect by travelling workers.

"I stopped disinfecting the workers’ hands because not all good efforts are appreciated. But I still have sanitisers in the bus for whoever wants to use it," said the driver, who asked that his name not be used.

Last Friday, the health ministry reported that a 21-year-old woman from St Catherine, who works at Alorica call centre, tested positive for the respiratory virus. By Sunday, a 19-year-old Clarendon man was also confirmed as being infected. He, too, is an employee of Alorica.

*Name changed on request.

#contactcenterworld, @OfficialAlorica

Posted by Veronica Silva Cusi, news correspondent

About Alorica:
Company LogoAt Alorica, we only do one thing – we make lives better. How? By creating insanely great experiences for customers — online, on the phone and through social media. From acquisition and sales to customer care and support, Alorica provides a host of world class services, including customer relationship management and back office support. We’re proud to passionately serve clients as diverse as we are — including communications, financial services, healthcare, retail and tech companies, many in the Fortune 500. We call the OC home, headquartered in Irvine, CA, with more than 100,000 employees across the globe.
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Today's Tip of the Day - New Opportunities

Read today's tip or listen to it on podcast.

Published: Wednesday, April 15, 2020

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2022 Buyers Guide Automation

1.) Agara

Agara is an autonomous virtual voice agent powered by Real-time Voice AI. It is designed to have intelligent conversations with your customers, vendors, and partners without any assistance from human agents. It can handle a wide variety of calls including inbound customer care calls, outbound lead generation calls, appointment scheduling calls, and overdue payment recovery calls.

Agara is available for several industries including banking, insurance, retail, e-commerce, airlines, and telecom. Powered by advanced Real-time Voice AI that understands speech in real-time, automatically determines the right process to follow and guides the caller along in the process with natural conversation.


EVA Voice Biometrics
Powered by Auraya's patented ArmorVox engine, EVA is a voice biometric extension that provides secure and seamless identification & verification capabilities for Amazon Connect. EVA provides delightful customer experience by removing the friction of providing PINs, passwords or secret information in order to prove caller identity. EVA comes standard with active and passive modes and a simple yet powerful agent interface. This allows for personalised self-service and a more friendly and efficient experience when interacting with an agent.

Outdated security methods such as PINs, passwords and security questions have become insecure and unreliable. Forgetting passwords and security answers o...
(read more)

Call Adapt

Soundboard Software
Call Adapt is a cloud-based digital soundboard application designed for contact centers. It works with any type of call and integrates with your existing dialer system. Powered by smart audio technology, Call Adapt gives your agents the ability to converse with customers in real time using programmed keyboard shortcuts. The result is perfect pitch delivery and less time spent on repetitive tasks.


Cognigy is a global leader in Conversational AI Automation. Its platform, Cognigy.AI, enables enterprises to automate customer and employee communications using intelligent voice and chatbots

Consilium Software

Consilium UniCloud™
UniCloud™ is an intuitive platform that allows Enterprises to deploy and manage their Unified Communication (UC) and Contact Center (CC) services with ease and entire provisioning can be completed in seconds using this comprehensive tool supporting digital transformation. The latest release 7.0 of UniCloud™ is a multi-tenant platform that transforms the delivery, management, and integration of collaboration and contact center solutions, for both Cloud and On-Premise deployment models.
With its single-pane-of-glass views and quick provisioning tool, UniCloud™ is instrumental in reducing the time to provision an entire multi-cluster Cisco collaboration platform, including contact centers (C...
(read more)

eGain Corporation

eGain Solve
Proven, Easy, and Guided Journey to Automate Customer Engagement in a Digital+AI World


Automated Language Testing
Emmersion offers automated assessments to quickly and accurately test speaking, writing, and grammar fluency in 9 languages and counting. We help contact centers improve CSAT scores by screening for top talent and retaining top performers.

OpsTel Services

The SPEED solution solves for service level issues while cost optimizing the environment with automation.

Provides an enhanced way to speed up & optimize invoking temporary agent skills configuration changes into the contact center environment.

Speed allows you to schedule both future changes & temporary changes that auto-revert back to the original state when scheduled time expires.

Speed features:

*Automated / Scheduled Temporary Agent Skills Configuration Management
*Immediate Temporary or Reoccurring Schedule Skills Configuration Changes
*Easy to Use/Operations Administration Focused
*Descriptive Monitoring Activity Dashboard
*Detailed “End to End’ Audit Trail and Perfor...
(read more)

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