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Call center will handle tech support

PENN YAN—The Connection call center coming to Penn Yan will be handling tech support calls for an Internet/WiFi company.
Harvey Johnson, vice president of call center operations for The Connection, said he could not name the company, but that it was a global Internet company. He said employees would be fielding mostly inbound calls.
Johnson said the call center will take tech support and retention calls. Initially, the call center will operate 12 hours a day. He said this could grow to 18 hours a day, depending on the company.
Currently, The Connection is hiring the Penn Yan center’s management team, including call center manager, program supervisor, and human resources manager. That will be the first of three hiring phases. Johnson said the workers answering the phones will begin training in the first week of April. He said training will last two weeks and be done at the Olean call center. He explained workers will have paid hotel rooms to stay in and can go home on the weekends.
The Connection’s Olean call center opened in 2008, creating 300 jobs. Mary George, city of Olean’s community development coordinator, said The Connection is continuing to recruit in the area. She said the company has brought in a number of workers from northern Pennsylvania when the call center first opened. She explained that with more workers coming into the area, home ownership funds became available to workers who wanted to live in the area.
George added that when the call center was first opened two years ago, local businesses were concerned workers would be taken from them in the job pool. However, she said she hasn’t heard any negative comments now. In fact, the Olean call center is planning on expanding the call center’s job force by 200 more employees.
Like Penn Yan’s future site, Olean’s call center is mostly for inbound calls. George said the call center handles Internet services and student loans. She added having the call center in Olean was a “spring board” for a project to create parking at a nearby Dresser-Rand property for workers.

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