While the call center industry is continuously growing, the employee turn over or attrition rate remained consistently high, which reflects unhealthy employment in the industry that companies still are unable to address. Every year, there are many people entering the industry. However, every year, there are also many people leaving the industry, shifting careers and simply moving from one company to another. What causes this high attrition rate. Most agents cite comparative similar reasons for leaving a call center company such as dissatisfaction, health problems, pregnancy, career change, immigration to another country, among others.
The high attrition rate in the call center industry has its advantages and disadvantages. The first advantage is that high employee turn over assures companies with new, fresh and more aggressive youthful talents to power their services. Because turn over is fast, companies save money in paying old employees, who so often are getting more compensation for their loyalties rather than their improved service. This is in contrast to other industries plagued with old, Jurassic and retirable people such as the education industry, that needs to be replaced. The downside of high attrition is the cost. Call center companies must constantly be aggressive in recruiting and training new and inexperienced personnel for its manpower supply. The need for continuing recruitment is revealed by the fact that some call center companies even outsourced their HR recruitment functions.
Despite its advantages, high attrition or employment turn over is generally regarded as a symptom of an unhealthy industry. People do not leave unless they enjoy the industry. Hence, call center companies are exerting efforts to minimize or reduce employment attrition rates. The best way to approach this is proper development. Most people applying in the call center industry are not really familiar or knowledgeable about the industry. They usually get only second hand stories, accounts and knowledge from people from the industry.
Companies should tie up with educational institutions to better develop manpower, employees, staff and agents for industry. Aside from developing the basic skills such as communication and computer skills, development of prospective employees should also focus on the culture of industry, which includes the night shift schedule or night work, western oriented management, the English speaking ambiance, and other socio and psychological circumstances of becoming a call center agent. Work life balance is one of the known yet understated reasons behind the high attrition rate in the industry. Development of call center employees in an educational institution should include addressing these issues so that new graduates are fully prepared in facing and overcoming the challenges in the industry.
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