Regular attendance and punctuality in the call center industry is extremely important because the nature of the customer service work entails timely service which can only be delivered at work at the right time and at the right place. The work of call centers is not something that allows for flexibility in time like researchers. Instead, call center agents must come to the office at their designated work schedules so that they can provide their services to the customers who needed their assistance and aid at that particular time of the day. Attendance and punctuality is not really a problem among Filipinos. However, it only becomes a problem in call centers because of the night shift schedule of work because of the time difference of the market or clients that they serve.
Because of the importance of attendance and punctuality in the call center industry, policies relating to tardiness are often directly associated with benefits or extreme penalties. In particular, the policies are usually used to give recognition and give generous rewards to employees for outstanding attendance. Attendance is usually linked to performance and rewarded with recognition through certificates, incentives with gives as well as promotion opportunities. On the other, habitual absences and tardiness are often penalized with suspensions, pay deductions, and even threats of dismissal. This is the basic policy of call centers for tardiness which often only differs in the leniency of the company provided to their agents.
Among the other common policies on tardiness that call center companies adopt is the use of a point system in which an agent gains or loses points for punctuality and lateness respectively. The agents accumulate points which have a corresponding reward or penalty. For instance, an agent who comes to office on time for five days gains five points. A perfect punctual attendance for a month is rewarded by an additional pay. For example, one is given an addition P1,000.00 for perfect attendance. Lateness or tardiness on the other hand results to losing points in which an agent also loses the chance of getting the P1000 bonus for perfect attendance. For instance, one absence automatically disqualifies an agent from the P1000 bonus. The most that one can get is P500 pesos for the month. However, this potential reward is still subject to deductions as an agent gets penalized for more absences and lates.
Other common tardiness policies included the provision of scheduled log on schedules for agents which is usually 10 to 15 minutes before their schedule. In some cases, the accumulation of certain number of lates or tardiness will be considered. For instance, an agent who becomes late for five minutes accumulates this five minutes to become one hour to which a corresponding salary deduction is meted out. Still, the other common policy for tardiness is the provision of a hierarchy of penalty for tardiness. For instance, the first incidence of tardiness is meted out with an oral warning, the second instance will be meted out with a written warning and so on and so forth.
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