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Article : Call Centre Projects on Rise but New Jobs Decrease in UK & Ireland

Professional services firm Deloitte & Touche released data from its fourth annual survey of the call centre market in the UK and Ireland. In 2001, 84 call centre project announcements were made with plans to create 19,793 jobs.

The report shows that while 2001 saw a 33 percent rise in the number of projects announced compared to 2000, there was a 21 percent fall in the actual number of jobs created. The project size also fell by 40 percent from an average 396 jobs created per project in 2000 to 236 jobs created per project in 2001.

Of the top seven call centre regions, Scotland, the North East, East Midlands, South East and Yorkshire & Humberside have seen strong growth in terms of number of project announcements in 2001. Scotland had the most projects at 13, creating 3,230 jobs last year. Ireland, the most popular location for call centre projects in 1999, secured only three projects creating 660 jobs in 2001, while in 1999 it created six projects and 3,045 jobs.

There was significant growth for the financial services and outsourcing sectors, which comprised 42 percent of all projects announced in 2001 and 53 percent of all jobs created in the call centre industry. Financial services projects created 5,836 new jobs last year while outsourcing activity accounted for 17 percent of all projects and 24 percent of jobs.

"Overall project sizes are decreasing year on year. The rise in projects coupled with the dip in total jobs created indicates that the call centre industry in the UK and Ireland is maturing," said Alistair Davies, Director at Deloitte & Touche.

Other Survey Findings Include:

  • Inward investors announced 22 projects in 2001, creating 4,819 jobs, compared to indigenous companies that announced 62 projects creating 14,974 jobs

  • In 2000, inward investors were involved in 30 projects, creating 11,525 jobs. The results for 2001 last year show a 27 percent decrease in the amount of jobs created by foreign-owned companies

  • The average number of jobs created per project has remained the same with indigenous companies typically having a higher number of jobs per project than inward investors

  • In 2001 there were 15 projects announced involving five hundred or more jobs. The largest project created during the year were:

Vertex (outsourcing) created 700 jobs in North West

London Electricity (utility) created 600 jobs in North East

DAS (retail) created 500 jobs in the West

Telecom Service Centres (telecoms) created 600 jobs in Scotland

Saga Group (financial services) created 600 jobs in the South East

Data is from the fourth annual Deloitte & Touche survey of call centre announcements made in the UK and Ireland. The data has been collected from project announcements involving plans to create 50 or more jobs.

About Deloitte & Touche:
Deloitte & Touche provides specialist location advisory services to corporate clients and major economic development agencies. The firm's economic development services include benchmarking, competitor and market intelligence, and project support. Corporate clients range from major multi-national corporations with mobile investment projects to UK corporates that are planning to relocate existing operations or establish new operations.

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Published: Thursday, June 6, 2002

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