What’s it Really like to Work in a Call Centre?

It’s highly likely that in the past you’ve had to make use of call centre services, probably in an attempt to fix a problem or change the details a company holds on you. Everyone knows that this can often be an arduous task, but what’s it like for the person on the other end of the phone?

Very often, a thought isn’t spared for the person taking the calls. They’re often used as something to take your frustrations out on, but what is it actually like for them working there?

It’s more complicated than it seems
In the view of the general public, carrying out call centre services seems to be quite straight forward. Most people figure that when working in a call centre your job is to just pick up the phone and speak. The truth is that it’s a bit more complicated than that and the staff members are not just reading from a script.

Call centre work requires people to think on their feet and be good problem solvers. They need to be able to pick up new skills and have a willingness to learn the products and services that they’re talking about. Call centre staff also need to have the ability to handle some of the more difficult customers, because they’ll be dealing day in, day out, with people who are calling to complain.

How it actually works
Call centres are based on targets, like most jobs. The staff members are targeted both on how long it takes them to answer a call and how long they remain on the phone for, amongst other things.

The angry customers do exist, but aren’t as common as you might think, as many customers are only eager to get a problem sorted. Most just prefer a simple conversation while they try to get something fixed.

Good points
Those working in a call centre will know of its advantages. Providing someone works hard, there are plenty of bonuses available.

Those who put the effort in may be rewarded with a promotion. Others can use the new skills they’ve gained or perfected in team working and problem solving to help them shine in interviews for other jobs.

There is a lot of money available to those working in a call centre, too. While the job itself often pays well, extra money can be earned when working weekends.

Call centres are often places where long lasting friends form, due to the amount and variety of people working there. Staff will be regularly talking to each other when asking for help and open plan offices can help to increase the team spirit.

Bad points
As with everything, there are bad points to working in a call centre. Not everyone will earn lots of money and the staff will sometimes have to deal with some very impolite people.

Some call centres are behind in terms of technology, refusing to update the systems to be faster or to utilise unified communications in favour of updating other parts of the business.

In addition, although this is becoming less common, some call centres still don’t treat their staff very well. However, a job in the right call centre can offer a rewarding and lucrative career.

This article was written by Amy Fowler on behalf of Maintel, who offer a range of call centre services and methods of unified communications. This article was written by a guest author. Would you like to, submit a guest blog post?