As much as the public may dislike telemarketers, telemarketers don’t have the easiest job in the world. Certainly it is the most thankless. Aside from the constant abuse they get from customers, they have some of the worst pay plans in the civilized world. We’re going to take a peek at some of the ways that telemarketers get paid.
The most common form of telemarketing pay plan is where the telemarketer simply gets paid for the hours he or she works. Since most telemarketing jobs are only part time, most telemarketers only put in about 4 hour days. Not all this time is spent on the phone. Depending on the company you work for you may spend 3 hours on the phone and then 1 hour doing your paperwork. This is usually a recap of all the calls you made, how long you were on each one and how many sales you made. Also included in this report is the number of completed calls against the number of total calls made. Then a breakdown is made of each non-completed call such as no answer, hang up, etc. Some companies take one of the 3 phone hours and use it for what they call company training or meeting time. So effectively, the telemarketer is on the phone for only 2 hours. This breakdown is important because not all companies pay at the same hourly rate even within the day itself.
For example; your typical company will pay about $7 per hour regardless of whether or not that time is spent on the phone, doing paperwork or in meetings. However, other companies have a variable rate scale based on what you are doing during the day. For example, they may pay $7 per hour for the time on the phone, but only $6 an hour for the paperwork time and meeting time. The effective rate of pay is called $6.50 per hour and that’s what they are hired at in their contract, which is then broken down into the various tasks.
These are the lucky ones. There are those who are simply paid a flat fee for their time that day, regardless of how many hours. For example, some companies will hire you to make a certain number of calls for the day. They will pay you $25 for the day’s work. If you finish the number of calls in 4 hours then your pay rate is about $6.25 per hour, but if it takes you 5 hours to make those calls then you’re working for $5 per hour. The people who make out best with these types of jobs are the seasoned pros.
Then there are those who are paid by commission only. They get a certain percentage of whatever they sell for the day. If they make no sales, they make nothing. The benefit of these jobs is that the commissions can be quite large if the product they are selling is a high end product. Most people who take straight commission jobs are those who are again, seasoned pro telemarketers as well as sales people.
Probably the most popular pay plan though is the combination salary and commission. These people usually work a 40 hour week and are paid a salary for that week. The salary is usually very low, sometimes only about $200 a week, which is about $5 per hour. However, the commissions paid out, if the person is a good telemarketer, can bring their weekly paycheck up to 6 or 7 hundred dollars. Again, these are people who are very confident in their sales ability.
Telemarketers are a special breed. They have a hard job and generally don’t get paid very well. Maybe we should feel sorry for them instead of holding them in such contempt.
Your Independent guide to Telemarketing