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Call centres shift pitch to beat attriti

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    Sanjay Bangroo
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    Call centre companies are finding new ways to beat the industry’s average attrition rate of between 20 and 35 percent. In India, companies are at pains to create a career out of it as against the US perception of an agent’s job as a stopgap for out-of-job graduates and housewives to dabble in. First, it was the focus on making the work place fun to retain people. Now companies are selling the idea that agents actually have a variety of roles to play within the company beyond the obvious one of taking calls.

    MsourcE CEO, Milind Chalisgaonkar, says that people who had been answering calls for over a year were invited to apply for posts such as Project Manager, Trainer, Assistant Manager and so on.

    He says , “For instance, we just sent a team of 30 people for training to the US. We need admin managers to coordinate such visits, help get the visas, organise their stay and so on,” he said. MsourcE is also telling potential recruits that they could grow to be trainers – who train the others in voice and accent, subject matter experts who walk around the floor clearing doubts that might arise as agents take calls. “We need information on common doubts that can be fed back into the training,”
    Factors such as how competitive the company was vis-à-vis the market in compensation, how employee-friendly it was and how involved the employees felt determined the attrition rate to a large extent, he said.

    To increase the `involvement’ factor, MsourcE invites the employee’s family to visit its facility. “Parents, especially of young girls, want to be reassured that their daughters may be working unconventional hours but are doing a perfectly decent job,”
    says Milind Chalisgaonkar.

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