Well said... I do agree some days were very easy and I loved it, but those were rare. I always had Pain in the ***** jobs but I bet you would of handled it 1/4thof the time as I was new. I did get into it with my manager once he was talking down to me and I put him in his place. He was a good guy overall but he would always push push push I would love to have had5 jobs as my quota. They said you needed 8-10 and wanted us to sell phones to customers as well. Again, the hours what's up with that? they would scheduling me 10 days straight with no DOR. I guess it's good for overtime cause i was taking 60 hours a week but I hated it, I had no time for anything else I would get home at 9-10pm couldnt work out and was afraid to take more then 15 mins for lunch (for being under quota) so I always skipped lunch or ate crappy quick fast food and gained weight. It was too much for me and eventually it caught up to me and I couldn't take it no more. If I was hired as Part Time then give me part time hours I don't mind 3 days a week. but 10 days straight, just too much.
When I quit, talked to my manager, he said "I hope it wasn't because the way we were pushing you, we only do that to ya know, keep things going. You didn't have to work that hard." something the lines of that, what the..?
anyway. I kinda miss that job in a weird way, I really like working with dial tone. I was checking the site but they are not hiring at the moment.
So what really is the difference between BTS and you guys, I was under the assumption you handled Business instead of Res which was easier and you didn't use S.E.F.A.S you had a laptop to get your orders etc. And of course paid more for not as much work. (don't get mad at me) this is just what was being said around the yard.
Jul 26th, 2009 04:35 PM #31
Last edited by yatta; Jul 26th, 2009 at 04:39 PM.
Jul 26th, 2009 05:56 PM #32
- Join Date
- Oct 4th, 2008
The reason they do that is because Bell works on a flawed system for management; Managers get bonuses if they produce certain productivity numbers amongst their crew. Unfortunately, what upper management is blind to is that if you have more jobs getting done...Chances are the quality will drop.
Business-related work is done by Bell biz-techs(the guys with the minivans) as well as BTS...lots of Meridian system BS and all that
Then you have cable techs...We work in the manholes, in cable pits, up on poles for sometimes extended periods of times..Fixing damages, wet cables, splicing in new aerial terminals, doing buried splices, encaps etc. I'm on the preventitive maintenance crew so what we do is rehab entire leads of cables, fixing things that have been constantly bypassed(LT's) rather than fixed and freeing up spare pairs. And on the demand side of things...They do alot of that as well but work directly with the customer - getting them dial tone no matter what...even if it means hanging a temp from 15 homes down. You guys can refer to cable...Bell techs can't - It's get it done because nobody else will.
The problem with much of BTS is that especially with alot of the newer guys, is that they don't fully understand what's involved with the infastructure - Fault locating isn't their job and it's not supposed to be, but that's the most complex aspect of twisted copper...Especially with IPTV being released soon and many changes due to happen - I highly doubt many of the BTS guys are going to be able to work with the new plant.
As for the laptops...Well in our case, we NEED laptops because we have to look at the maps to see how the cable is running...We dont' just go off of terminal outs as per assignment - We have maps of all the cables, what goes in the manholes, what splices are there, where they go from there, where conduits start, abandoned cables, dead counts...etc etc
Either way, point is that BTS doesn't really have it as bad as some people think. The only thing I'm worried about for them is the split shift part of their new contract that is ruled as "voluntary" - I doubt it will stay voluntary for very long.
Jul 26th, 2009 08:59 PM #33
Thanks for that reply. I am now more educated in what Bell Techs actually do. Bell guys were cool with me, if I bumped into them. I would ask them questions like how long you been working with the Company and do you still enjoy it etc. They were not mean or nothing. Which is good cause I felt like a total noob near them lol. One time I was actually doing a repair and had a hard time finding a PED it was barried in some plants or something and he nicely pointed out to me and we laughed about its location, then he gave me a heads up on a stike coming lol
anyway. it sounds like things are a lot better from when I was doing I&R. Could you explain with this Volunteer split shift thing means? Thanks.
Jul 28th, 2009 12:28 AM #34
- Join Date
- Mar 2nd, 2004
In regards to I&R and not cable repair, Bell techs do less work. If a BTS guy goes to a repair, they are responsible for everything from the ped to the house. I have seen waaay too many Bell repair techs refer to BTS because the problem was inside, when it really wasn't, they just sloughed the job. More than enough Bell guys just trained on the job (here's a Norstar 3X8, just figure it out and don't let the customer see you reading the manual in the back room). Hell, I saw 5 guys in 1996 trying to figure out how to program an SL1 they put in a hotel (well one guy was typing with his index fingers while another read to him from a manual and the other three chatted because they had no clue, they were just charging time).
I also had 3 friends that went from ETS to Bell and they all told me that they had only repairs and would refer half of them to ETS so they did not have to do them. They would brag about being on the golf course for the entire afternoon while they know the ETS guys were still working. They did not know each other, yet the stories were to similar. I went to a house where Bell and ETS were having a pissing match for two weeks throwing the call back and forth to each other with referrals. The customer was extra pissed when I was the only tech to swap out the carbons and fix the two week old NDT isssue. If the ETS guy was an inexperienced idiot, why didn't the experienced Bell techs pull the carbons before their referrals?
Standard job loads were 8-11 calls a day with repairs (most repairs are insanely easy). Problems between ETS/BTS were started by the Bell guys going on about how ETS knows/does nothing, meanwhile they worked along side the same people they were insulting for years. Put them in a yellow van and now they are incapable of the same job? Please...
Don't be fooled into thinking that BTS just does inside home wiring and the occasional drop either. Single Line/ Multi Line res/bus inside and out.PBX and SL1 and BCM installs. Apartment building wiring, terminal construction and dedication, jacking and testing. Existing riser replacement due to age or damage. New riser installs involving coring and conduit placement. All sizes of jobs like Crappy Tire head office at Yonge and Eglinton (a 5800 set Option 81C Flash cut, Manulife (chopped up into 3 phases due to size of cutover). NSL enterphone interfaces and the list goes on.
5 Completions is a bull$hit quota. I could stay at breakfst until 10:00 and have that done by 2:30-3:00. If those weren't all complete installs with outlets, then they would get done faster.
Here is the agreement so you can see who gets what at BTS:
IPTV will be very challenging for most because either you like and understand telecommunications and get it or do the job for money only and will never truly get it. I have always been involved in things that relate to that job, so I found it easy. Every place I go, the old guys try to hold me back with "you haven't been here long enough so you don't know." They are just real scared or real dumb, the old guys that really know their stuff don't care because they are bus lengths ahead of everybody with knowledge and they know it.
Ther are people working on their 22nd year doing residential because they don't get it . I made it through about 10 different jobs in 4 years including teaching the use of and technical support of laptops/secur id and technicians support when they first converted from paperwork.
Split shifts suck unless you live close by and want to work late. You would work from 8-12 and call it quits and then come back for 4-8 because that is when the public is booking the most calls.
Most new techs everywhere suck, it is a issue plaguing all MSOs, not just BTS. Now that you take your truck home instead of leaving it at a garage, information/stories do not get shared amongst techs every morning, like they used to. In the old days you used to help your buddy out when you got ahead, or vice versa. Now you can't drive out of your area because of the GPS in your truck, so no help for anybody else. This really slows the learning rate down. The whole situation is sad.
I will still get a kick out of IPTV because this new service and the solution it rides on will cause a slew of problems you have never seen before. I hope Bell is smart enough to give out the proper tools to diagnose the wacky problems they will have.
Jul 31st, 2009 05:53 PM #35
wow, thanks for sharing that. Interesting...
you mentioned that BTS also does PBX and SL1 and BCM installs. I assuming they are taught this? Do tpt's do this?
Last edited by yatta; Jul 31st, 2009 at 06:34 PM.
Sep 5th, 2009 12:08 AM #36
- Join Date
- Sep 4th, 2009
- York Region
BTS is not a good company to work for if you are just applying. With the new contract BTS now has a new rule to follow as far as being upgraded to regular part-time or regular full-time. It must be 40% Full-time 20% part-time and 40% temporary. If you work anywhere away from the city you will be waiting a long time, years and years 5+.
As a temp you have to work every weekend ( you might get 2 sundays off in an eight week schedule). With the new contact, temps are forced to work all holidays including x-mas ( all stat holidays). You shift will change daily, if you were working 1pm-9pm, they will call you at 8pm the night before to tell you; you are working a 8-5pm instead. You are on call basically(no second job for you!) In the winter they will sit you(which means you do not work your scheduled day and do not get paid). You might be lucky to get 3 days a week outside of major urban areas. They now only guarantee you 1 day per week in the winter. Eliminating all chances of collecting EI, which would pay you more. You get no employee discount or pension and you have to pay for 50% of your benefits.
Top wage for a temp is as of right now is $17.36 (goes up in increments over the next 5 years to 19.10 or some bs like that). This includes you doing Install & Repair for residential telephone, high-speed, buried service wire fault locating, some business, and now central office work, for $17.36 and hour!. Not only is that bad for all those skills you just acquired, you are doing the same job as regular part-time and full-time employees making $6 dollars less than they are per hour! If you think thats bad, Bell central office workers get paid like $34 an hour to just do central office work, they may also do cable repair, I am not sure.
I agree this is a cushy job for a regular full-time technician, almost $27 an hour after 5 years, weekends off, holidays off, employee discount, pension, benefits, 8-5pm regular hours. ahhhhhhhhhh you could almost have a life outside of bts with a job like that. Too bad the company will never make up another full-time employee. Its a sad state this company is in if you ask me.
Don't waste your time with this job if you are just applying. It is just that; a waste.
Sep 6th, 2009 11:47 PM #37
- Join Date
- Nov 7th, 2004
ive worked at BTS as a Student Technican for this summer and last summer. Tomorrow is my last day before I go back to University. They do treat their students pretty well, u must ask for your time off early. You will get a bursary which is nice. You will have lots of safety meetings and such. Every job is like an adventure, u learn quite a bit of life skills like how to use a drill and screwdriver and a ladder PROPERLY, without fatigue. U have to think quite a bit in this job, the more you think, the faster you can find and fix the problem. You learn about customer service, you learn customers are crazy and some are full of BS. If your working out of Hymus and servicing toronto, you will climb every day or at least every week. Last year i worked out of Hymus, this year I worked out of Markham. You workout in a way this way, but honestly climbing is very dangerous and you find ways to do it safely or ways around climbing (PO it, I KID I KID) ... This year i learned how to strip BSW (Buried Service Wire) like its a flicking science ... I can do it in under a minute, cause im a pro like that without slicing my finger or my hand on the shielding and bleeding everywhere *gloves and the utility knife and the needle nose is ur friend for BSW * (haha). Next point ... Climbing is the worst, followed by Static and Shorts. I would hate to do this job as a career path. I would hate to do this in the Winter. I will not be working here next summer. I dont know why someone would do this except for three facts. You are need money and are a student, you are uneducated, or you are a full timer and can take your truck home and finish early. Sometimes you can finish your quota within like 5 or 6 hours then you can just go home and chill. then it makes sense. Anyway I havent spell checked or anything, just writing out my thoughts. here you go. This summer i was paid 14.20 and time and a half for overtime and triple time for holidays. What else ... its defenetly a physical job. If you are going to do this make sure you get a nice manager, your health and safety and union reps are there to help u, dont take **** from managers. Most managers are quite good or dont really care ... they keep off your back for the most part.
GET TO KNOW THE MATERIAL HANDLER. He is your best friend, buy him coffee and stuff, he assigns you ur truck every day and is generally a good person to know as he knows the ins and outs. He will make sure you have air conditioning in your truck vs being a sweaty bum in a hot truck. If something took longer than an hour to do, make sure you and ask for help from an SME, another technician, a union rep, the material handler or the manager. there is always an easier way to get things done. What else ... scotch locks are your best friend, test everything twice, make sure u punch down on the right things. You cant get cocky and say its only two wires, this job will humble you, you wouldn't believe some of things that go wrong, its an adventure every job. protectors go bad. anyway ... yeah so thats about it. Don't abuse the company too much either ... Sometimes you can fix the problem (seldom but this summer I had maybe 4 such cases and just had to leave). Dont take ******** from customers, let them know u dont appreciate being yelled at and its your right to leave at any time and it is. Just jump and ur truck and leave ... let your manager know/give them their number. I havent had to do this yet tho ... almost 1 time tho this summer. Ummmm Listen to what the customer has to say and you will pick up on things, in one way its great to do some, like for repairs, sometimes they like to lie to get free stuff etc ... ull figure out what info is usefull for the task. For example (today i had this) ... on your order it says no dial tone ... this is a reoccuring problem according to the customer. So yeah u show up and ask the customer. "Yeah this happened before 7 YEARS AGO" ... Immideatly u know the customer is an idiot and its not a reoccuring problem ... etc etc .. customers dont read manuals etc, dont try things out, usually its something simple. "Hey my modem doesnt work" Is it filtered? Is it plugged in? etc etc LOL ... but again its a crazy job, sometimes the problem can have you climb and change many things before the problem disappears. One job can take literally 2 mins and the other 2 hours and you want to shoot urself in the head.
This is prolly my most unorganized post ever on RFD, but yeah i hope i helped.
Sep 15th, 2009 01:59 PM #38
^ You can't choose your manager. you get assaigned to one. And if you are a student for the summer, each summer you come back, you report to the same manager as the year before. yes working there is very physical, but depending on how much effort you put in it, you will definitely get lazy. Also, you have a quota of 5% rework that you must meet each month, any higher and your manager will be on your ***** , big time!
btw, Girish, is that you?
Oct 22nd, 2009 10:06 AM #39
- Join Date
- Oct 15th, 2007
I can give some feedback since I used to work as a technical support for Bell in Montreal,QC
My job consist of taking calls from customers and give them support with their cellphone's problems.
The environment is great, people are chill and relax (compare to the customer service department). Each of us had their own desk..a big one on top of that, it is really professional.
annual salary is around 38k to 40k and it can go higher. You are getting pay 18$/hr and can go to 19$ the next year depending on your performance...When I talk about performance it is not selling. They will check the % of solutions, your time on the phone etc. Really easy to achieve if you like cellphones, technology etc. Also there are bonuses everymonth. The top 10 performance can win 100$, Tickets for hockey, cellphones etc.
On top of that you will have a free phone ( the basic one like old samsunc, htc etc. not the blackberrys)...and you also have a free line with unlimited calls and free data... I shoulve stay for the iphone...free data+iphone= AMAZING!!!)
Oh yeah you also have 35% offf your phone products, internet or home phone...I was paying around 40$ for both of them.
It is a cool place to work since there is always new phones, new problems, new technologies issues. and you get pay very well...
Now that Bell is going to HSPA and will get the iphone next month...with all the new gsm phone that they will carry...it is definitively a good place to work at. Oh yeah HSPA is only a transition phase before they reach LTE..which is 4G ...
I am a geek,passionate with technologies...so yeah I really liked this job.
I hope this can help.
P.S I am french speaker...dont mind my errors..
Nov 7th, 2009 02:38 PM #40
- Join Date
- Nov 7th, 2009
- Cornwall, Ontario
being a bell tech not bad
hey im a wife of a bell tech and its not that bad you have the good and the bad but your supposed to follow saftey instructions and protocols(thats why you have almost 1 month to 2 months worth of training now dont you?!!!). if you do the protocols etc there is a lesser chance you will get hurt. 95% of the techs that have gotten hurt or killed is because of not doing there job correctly and not following the right safety measures to ensure they dont get hurt on the job. thats why theres safety meetings every week or when ever they are and the pay isnt that bad its 15$ a hour which is getting pushed up to 17 something a hour. so i dont know what you all are complaining about! and when you become full time you get everything for free! on top of that you get your tools a truck gas insurance truck repairs and everything for free! so i dont know what u men are talking about there are are far more dangerous jobs out there!
Nov 8th, 2009 10:15 AM #41
- Join Date
- Mar 13th, 2009
Are you implying most people should be paying for the maintenance and insurance on their company owned vehicles?
Perks are supposed to be things that most other people in similar lines of work really want and don't get.
With regards to there being far more dangerous jobs. Which jobs are more dangerous that have similar salaries?
I fortuntely got out of the IT industry awhile ago. I made the jump to the public sector after 10 years of slogging it out for almost nothing in IT and have basiclly doubled my salary and do maybe about a fourth of the work I used to.
Nov 8th, 2009 05:47 PM #42
Jan 11th, 2010 04:40 AM #43
- Join Date
- Jan 11th, 2010
- Niagara Region
BTS hiring again
Couple of questions if anyone knows.
Does BTS techs install dishes up in the middle of a residential roof? Or just at the sides/edge?
Someone here mentioned wasp nests, and other critters. Anyone refuse work orders due to environments they considered unsafe?
Are the new split shifts voluntary for TPT (I know they are voluntary for RPT and RFT).
They're hiring nearby now, St. Catharines and Burlington. How long could I expect to get on RPT?
Jan 19th, 2010 01:52 AM #44
- Join Date
- Feb 10th, 2003
I do the same thing on the west coast...
Our sat installers don't stand on roofs, supposedly. You can put a dish on the roof itself as long as you can reach. Having said that, guys do walk on roofs.
There are wasps in terminals, and there's nothing worse then surprising a nest. But if you take the proper precautions, then it won't happen. Before you go up, you smoke the pole with a very heavy hammer. This ensures that the pole isn't rotten, and it will wake up any wasps. You'll see them swarming from the ground.
If there's swarming wasps, then get a can of wasp spray. It has good reach, and it kills very effectively. Start spraying a long way off, and drench the terminal before you open it. If there's a real nest in a terminal, I go through half a can, and they're all dead.
Mar 30th, 2010 05:30 PM #45
- Join Date
- Dec 24th, 2007
I just got a job offer from BTS yesterday. This thread is a little discouraging after reading some of the comments. Plus, I have to pay $1500 for the training...
Last edited by blackstar360; Mar 30th, 2010 at 06:09 PM.