Higher Attrition Rates - Menacing the Growth of the Call Center Industry

While the call center industry is looking forward to the unstoppable growth, attrition rates are marring its prospects. As per the data published in the leading newspaper after a statistical research of attrition rates in call center outsourcing industry it was concluded that Australian, European and Indian call centers reported 29 percent, 24 percent and 18 percent attrition respectively. On global average it came up to 24 percent. According to research data, the attrition rate for voice-process is around 55-60 percent and 15-20 per cent for the non-voice schedules. It also predicts that there would be 1.1 million call center job requirements by the years to come whereas the shortage of around 2, 62,000 professionals dooms the call center industry this year.

As per a definition attrition attributes to the downsizing of a company in size or number. In call centres where a thumbs-up to a project takes the company a step ahead, attrition push them miles back. Other then rigorous shifts, monotony of the work, workload and physical strain or no personal life things attached to it, there are some reasons for which employees leave their call center jobs:

1) Poaching: Another big call that needs to be resolved is "Poaching". Poaching is to lure the candidate of one organization by offering bigger rewards or high salary. Poaching is a common exercise observed by almost every organization nowadays.

2) Psychological Stress: Working on weekends/holidays, the guilt of no time for spouse or family took toll on mental health of call center workers.

3) Policies at Work Place: Some of the call centers are termed as Coolie Centers by their employees. The workers join there for experience or in some need and then, flew off.

Attrition has become major threat to the boom experienced by call centres. Besides the lost efforts and wasted time, an organization suffers with monetary losses as well.

1) In case, if we calculate the post of a person in terms of expenses/salary/benefits and the profit he could have brought to the company and compare it with the time when the post was vacant and productivity was zero even the work was completed by another team members. Also, include the cost of the time taken to interview the person, the administrative time and costs to begin and stop the payroll and other company benefits, the cost of manager's time to understand and evaluate the situation to know what is pending, training costs, the cost of the impact on departmental work, the cost of knowledge/skills/ information that company entrusted in you and so on amount enough to weigh down a company under financial crunch.

2) The cost of advertisements like-job portals, in-house recruiters, referrals and internet posts range high to a call centre.

3) New hiring costs higher to a company than the previous one.

It is clear that the costs related to attrition are threat to the financial sanctity and credibility of any organization. Some of the dangers are directly associated with the organizations some are not. However, all of them are real and HR should take desperate measures to attend the causes whatever they are.

To estimate, the cost of attrition to a company, the thumb rule mentioned below stands credible. Though, it depends on the category of the staff.

The cost of attrition = (Total staff x attrition rate in percentage) x (annual salary x 80 percent)