When you are considering life long career options it would be fair to say that working in a call centre is not the first thing most people think of. In fact for a lot of people they could think of nothing worse than working in a call centre! But for the millions of people across the globe who have worked in call centre at some point in their career they will tell you there are many positives you gain from working in a call centre.
Sure, like most industries there are a few bad eggs out there but the majority of call centre operators realise their greatest asset is their people and rather than just a transient job, its now a full time profession where you can spend an entire career.
Anyway, we thought it was about time we started promoting some of the positive elements of working in a call centre so we’ve listed our top 15 below.
15 great things about working in a call centre:
1. You make lots of friends
Whether its being in the ‘trenches’ all day together, sharing similar shift times or the enormous focus call centres place on building teams there is one thing for sure, working in a call centre is a great place to make friends.
When call centre staff are surveyed about “what is the best part of your job?” typically the number one answer is always “my team/friends”.
2. You can earn good money
For a job that doesn’t require any formal qualifications you can earn amazing money. With starting salaries typically above $45k and with sales call centre agents often able to earn over $100k per annum you would be hard pressed to find a better alternative.
And this assumes you are still working on the phones, once you start climbing the corporate ladder there is even more money to be made.
3. There a great opportunities for promotion
Not everyone wants a career in call centres. But for those that do, there are great opportunities for promotion. From roles within the call centre including leadership (e.g Team Leaders, Operations Manager) through to a range of other roles including Quality, Training, HR, Workforce Management, Reporting there is wide range of opportunities.
And call centre staff are highly sought after for other roles within your organisation. Its well known that the call centre now serves as an internal recruitment pool full of great talent that know the products and have a customer focus. From roles in marketing, accounting, sales etc clocking up some time in the call centre is a great launching pad for your career.
4. There is a heap of training available
Nearly all call centres have training that forms part of your induction program that normally consists of product training and customer service/sales skills. But outside of that, call centres typically offer a range of additional training opportunities for staff that are keen on developing themselves further.
From leadership, project management, computer skills and specialist call centre skills like Workforce Management there is typically some great courses available.
5. Your skills are transferable
Being a good call centre agent is no fluke. The skills required to be successful agent are typically honed over a period of time. Learning how to deal with difficult customers, turn a negative into a positive, resilience, sell or upsell a product all require specialist skills that not everyone possesses. Thats right, you are a professional!
The good news is those skills are in demand. Not just here in your home country, but across the globe. So if you are good at your job there are other organisations that will want those skills and might even pay you a little bit more for them. And who doesn’t love a pay rise after all!
6. A work/life balance is possible
Most call centres have a range of different shifts to cover peak periods that customers attempt to contact them. This is typically forecasted down to 15 minute increments for each day of the year and allows for seasonal variances like holidays, weather, sporting events etc.
Call centres then create rosters to meet that demand. The good call centres allow their staff to swap shifts with others, work part time or casual etc as long as those roster periods are filled.
Whilst each call centre is different, most are willing to hold on to their good staff and will be happy to provide you with some flexibility as long as it still suits business requirements.
7. It can actually be a career
Whilst most people don’t typically view a call centre job as a career choice, it has certainly proven to be a great career for a surprisingly large number of people.
From starting on the phones there are now literally hundreds of different roles that are either directly in, or have contact centres as part of their portfolio. Most large companies now have a Chief Customer Officer role (CCO) that sits as part of the executive team and directly within the call centre space there are Head of Contact Centres/Customer Experience that can earn well in excess of $200k. Not bad for just starting out on the phones with no formal qualifications hey?
8. There can be a lot of job satisfaction
There are an incredibly diverse range of call centres within our community. From the ‘common’ call centres that take orders, complaints, help desks, general enquiries etc through to life critical centres such as emergency assist (000) and Lifeline.
Each one of them can provide an enormous amount of satisfaction for the call centre agent from literally saving someones life, turning an angry customer into a happy one or helping to sell a product you know will benefit a customer, working in a call centre can be a truly rewarding experience.
9. You can have a heap of fun!
These days its hard to recruit and retain call centre agents (and its expensive) so call centres are typically at the forefront of staff engagement initiatives to hang onto their staff. This means that senior leaders within the business right down to Team Leaders are committed to ensuring that staff enjoy coming to work and they often have targets on staff satisfaction/engagement as part of the leadership Key Performance Indicators.
From structured Reward and Recognition programs, fitness programs and charity days through to dress up days, food days and more there is always something going on to ensure you are having fun! Check out the articles in our Staff Engagement category for some ideas.
10. You can meet ‘the one’
OK perhaps a bit cheeky but with such a diverse range of people working in a call centre and the sheer number of functions, fun days etc its inevitable you are going to make some great friends.
And who knows some of those friendships might lead to something more. Having worked in contact centres for over 25 years I’ve been fortunate enough to attend multiple weddings and met many children that all started from a friendship in a call centre!
11. You can travel the world
We mentioned earlier that your skills are transferable and we meant it. Australian and New Zealand managers are highly sought after on a global stage. Why? Because typically we are great at managing people and given the high cost of our labour, we are also good at process design, WFM etc to keep costs down. Both those attributes are highly desirable skills and make you a very attractive candidate for international jobs.
If you are also good at your role, you may also be invited to speak at, or attend conferences across the globe. Contact Centre conferences are a great way to learn more skills, network and see the world at your employers expense!
12. Networking is not only possible, its encouraged!
Despite all the different contact centres out there, we all typically share a lot of the same challenges. And in my observations on the contact centre industry we are always very happy to share and learn off each other. You only have to attend an Auscontact Association event to realise what a great community you are a part of where people of all different levels are willing to share their knowledge and experiences in order to lift our industry as a whole.
If you’d like to see a list of all upcoming events like courses, conferences and networking events you can check on our Events calendar.
13. You will be well fed
Walk into any contact centre and there is normally lots of food! From call centres that provide a free breakfast for staff through to lots of snacks to keep everyone firing there is always food around. And with such a great team environment you will find someone is always bringing in something delicious to share.
I’ve had some of my best dishes ever when staff have brought in their signature dish to try!
14. Lots of job variety
Without stating the bleeding obvious, working in a call centre does normally require you spending time on the phones. But more than ever, the call centre agents role is diversifying across a range of different channels. Customers now want to engage across a range of channels including Live chat, emails, Social Media channels etc and these functions are typically all handled in the call centre.
For larger centres they have dedicated roles focusing on each channel (yes you can get paid to be on Facebook all day!) and for smaller centres a call centre agent may manage multiple channels. Smart little cookies aren’t we 🙂
15. Job complexity
With technology continuing to evolve the ability for customers to ‘self-serve’ is continuing to increase. How many times to you just try and find the answer to your question on the internet to avoid having to call a company? Plenty right.
That means that when the calls do come through, they are becoming increasingly complex requiring a really clever human being to sort out the customer issue. If you’ve ever seen a call centre agent in full flight they are amazing at navigating multiple computer systems, processes and policies all while having a quality conversation with a customer.
The 15 best things about working in a call centre [Blog Post]. Retrieved August 16, 2018