Call Center in Amarillo
Posted in the Atmos Energy Forum
#1 Jun 30, 2010
Atmos is building a new call center in Amarillo?
So, here is the deal. Atmos Energy doesn't care about Amarillo. They moved from Amarillo to Dallas many years ago and don't care (remember they started in Amarillo in early 1900s). They took money from the City of Amarillo/AEDC in 1998 to build and open the present call center with the promise of many jobs. The money given was about $10,000/position added. In those days, the call center had about 250 jobs. Do the math - 250x$10,000=$2,500,000. That is a lot of dough. Now where are the jobs you ask? Or better still - where's the money? Remember the rate cases in Dallas? Furniture, alcohol and food. Atmos spends like crazy. Have you ever been to the Atmos booth at the Amarillo BBQ contest? If you like drinking - come on down...
Atmos has been slowly moving jobs to Dallas and Waco (their other call center - former TXU center - remember this later in the conversation...). They have moved their business office functions to Dallas (billing adjustments, bankruptcy and collections). Their dispatch operations were moved to Dallas. HR and IT of the call center (basic skeleton crew - we'll mention that also later!). Many CSA and Supervisor jobs moved to Waco. The Amarillo Call Center used to be a 24x7 operation but isn't anymore so there isn't a need for additional employees. I wonder if Amarillo knows this? Hmm, probably not. The home-based CSAs don't work in Amarillo. Actually, they don't even work for Atmos. They're outsourced. TXU was outsourced - wait, there are those letters again!
West Texas made the following comment - When is the AEDC going to create some jobs for the WTAMU graduates...so they can stay in Amarillo? If the best and brightest young people keep having to leave town to find work, then your town will eventually start to decline." It is funny that you mention this...
Very few WT/Amarillo College students work there. Atmos won't work around the student's hours. I have seen people come and go.
Actually Atmos recently hired (in the past year) a new Director for the call center. He not only came from outside of Atmos but from outside of the city of Amarillo. There are two very, very capable managers in the call center who could have done this job but Atmos choose to go outside and outside of the city. He was replacing the previous General Manager who was brought in from Dallas (and did I did mention that he worked for TXU and a great friend of the VP of Customer Service?).
So, TXU... Atmos purchased the TXU gas company in 2004. The only problem is TXU is taking over Atmos. The VP of Customer Service is originally from TXU and is trying to recreate the TXU environment. The VP is taking away all of the family atmosphere we had with Atmos. TXU, as a company, built the brand new call center in Waco then suddenly sells the call center, its assets and outsources the whole lot to Cap Gemini. I bet that this is in the card for us at Atmos. They are moving everything to Waco and making it the bigger call center because guess who run the Waco center. The guy who was previously General Manager who is good friends with the VP and originally from TXU.. This all sounds like a novel but it is all true.
d2l4r "here is an equation for you West-Texan, 140 Employees + 70 or so Computers = How many IT folks?!? Apply within the IT department at Atmos - you are miserable!" The problem with this is that Atmos already has IT staff. There won't be any hired. No only that - it is a pitiful skeleton crew of people working there.
In conclusion, I would like to know how many of my tax dollars are going to build this center. As a taxpayer in Amarillo, I have already donated too many dollars in the past.
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