Bell says allegations are ‘completely unfounded and untrue’
By Erica Johnson, CBC News Nov 19, 2017 9:00 PM ET
Bell call centre employee Andrea Rizzo says she had to take a stress leave because of the constant pressure to meet sales targets or face possible termination. (Tina Mackenzie/CBC)
A longtime Bell Canada employee describes working in the company’s Scarborough, Ont., call centre as “a non-stop nightmare,” where she says she is forced to sell customers products they don’t need, don’t want, and may not understand, to hit sales targets and keep her job.
Andrea Rizzo, 50, has worked for Bell — Canada’s largest telecom service provider — for 20 years, and says the pressure to upsell customers who call in has become relentless.
She says employees are expected to make a sale on every call.
Rizzo is currently on stress leave, and worries about the repercussions of making her concerns public, but says the status quo has to change.
“I feel bad,” says Rizzo. “I’m not really listening to what the customer called about. All I’m thinking in my head is, ‘Oh wow, this customer just said they didn’t want the service, it’s too expensive. And I’ve sold a service to them that they will not know how to use, or really need.'”
Andrea Rizzo, seen here in a photo taken in 2001, around the time she was switched from Bell’s billing department to sales. (Andrea Rizzo)
Every customer a target
Rizzo says many of the customers who call in are on a limited income, and clearly can’t use the products she is pressured to sell.
“We have a lot of seniors who call,” says Rizzo. “They tell me they’re blind, and I still have to sell them internet.”
“I’ve sold a service to them that they will not know how to use, or really need.”– Andrea Rizzo, Bell client representative
She says she talked a 90-year-old into signing up for internet service knowing the woman was blind and couldn’t use it.
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