News : Call Centre Industry Facing “Dramatic Change'
Glasgow, Scotland, Feb 24, 2015 -- The call centre industry has entered a period of dramatic change, with digital interactions set to replace voice calls as the preferred method of customer engagement in the next two years.
The volume of non-voice traffic received by contact centres, which employ about 90,000 staff in Scotland, is expected to rise by 87 per cent in the next two years.
At the same time voice traffic handled by centres is expected to fall by 42 per cent, a survey of 901 organisations in 72 countries has found.
The trend has been presented as the biggest change to affect the industry in 30 years, putting pressure on operators to ensure they have the skills and technology to deal with digital traffic.
But it has also been presented as an opportunity to grow employment. While it was previously thought the fall in voice calls would result in lower demand for staff, the number of skilled workers required to field the increasing flow of digital communication is expected to rise.
Paul Scott, of Dimension Data, which has been analysing trends in the sector for the last 10 years, said the rate of change now being seen in the sector is "dramatic".
He said: "What the data is telling us now is that within the next two years most contact centres, or call centres as they used to be called, will actually be handling more digital interactions, that's non voice traffic, than voice.
"That's a really profound change in our industry, from the way we handle calls [to] the kind of skills people need to deal with digital. It changes all of that."
According to the research, the shift will lead to a net employment increase of 16 per cent in the sector in the next two years, with more staff needed to deal with contact through as many as eight different channels
Posted by Veronica Silva Cusi, news correspondent
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Published: Thursday, February 26, 2015