I worked for West in Omaha about twenty years ago. Our biggest complaint was that points were assessed if you did something wrong in a call. For example you had to spell the customer's name and address back to them. For most of the year, if didn't spell back a common name like 'Smith' or 'Johnson', it was no big deal and no points were assessed but when it was coming time for your vacation, points were assessed for every little thing. If you were within a week of earning your vacation you could be just about sure that they would find a way to fire you.
Then 30 days after you'd been fired you would get a letter in the mail that you were elgible for re-hire. The end result was that you would lose your vacation and seniority. After going through this twice I decided it was time to start a union. I contacted the Communications Workers of America and started having meetings with other employees who felt the same way and there were plenty of them. I made no secret of what I was doing but perhaps I should have. I was fired again in a matter of days. I sued West in small claims court which was a mistake in a right-to-work state like Nebraska. I called witnesses to prove that I was fired for attempting to start a union, which is highly illegal.
The judge said I would be notified of his decission by mail. He decided against me. I couldn't believe it and I called the court to ask what in the world he based his decission on. His clerk told me that the judge was not obligated to explain his decission. At that point I called the National Labor Relations Board and if you are treated unfairly by West or any other company that's who to contact. Once the NLRB entered the picture I received all the back pay that I was cheated out of as well as my vacation pay and West was forced to rehire me and remove anything derogatory about me from their employment records.
I had no desire to go back and I never worked for West again. West was made to past a large notice on the wall of the break room saying that they would not threaten or fire any other employees who wanted to start a union and they would not threaten to move to another city to avoid unionization. However I cannot help but believe that their opening of large telemarketing centers in third world countries is an atempt to avoid paying living wages and dealing with people who have a right to unionize. The best thing I can tell any of you is that if you have been treated unfairly call the National Labor Relations Board and file a complaint.
Read the employee handbook carefully. In lieu of a union contract, the employee handbook constitutes a contract and they have to live up to their own rules. Often they don't. Don't let the fact that they are big and you're just a little guy intimidate you. They're counting on that to win. And organize, organize, organize. Nobody's going to hand your rights on a silver platter. You're going to have to fight for them.