The Contact Professionals Alliance Inc.

The Contact Professionals Alliance Inc.

July 28, 2005 12:08 ET

The Contact Professionals Alliance Inc.: Myths about Call Centres Exploded in New Report

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(CCNMatthews - July 28, 2005) - A just completed survey blows away a number of misconceptions about Canadian Call Centres.

Myth #1. Most Call Centres are big.

Many banks, credit card and telephone companies have big Customer Service operations, sometimes numbering thousands of staff. However, the median staff size of Call Centres in Canada is only 44 full-time equivalents (FTEs). HRDC reports that the CC industry employs 1 in every 25 working Canadians and that 89% of Call Centres in Canada have fewer than 50 employees.

Myth #2. Call Centres are open 24 hrs. a day.

Only 25% of Call Centres stay open 24/7/365. The average open time for others was 12 hours a day from Monday to Friday, and 3 hours per day on Saturdays, Sundays and statutory holidays. This data may lead to the conclusion that weekend calls may be outsourced to other Call Centres.

Myth #3. Everyone is outsourcing, and everyone is outsourcing to India.

Based on the 2005 survey, the vast majority (71%) of Call Centres in Canada do not outsource customer service calls at all. 10% route overflow / weekend calls to another Call Centre within their organization, and the other 19% outsource to 3rd party providers. Of that 19%, 73% outsource within Canada, and only 26% (that's less than 5% of the total respondents) outsource outside of Canada, to India, the USA, Ireland, England and the Philippines.

Myth #4. Most Call Centre workers are female and most are first-time jobholders.

It's true: approximately 65% of employees in Canadian Call Centres are female- that is until you hit what appears to be the glass ceiling. Men hold more than half of the top jobs (Directors, Managers).

In Canada, 47% of Customer Service Reps (CSRs) are between the ages of 25 and 34, and many have college degrees, dispelling the myth that young people who can't find 'good' jobs elsewhere are the main group who seek jobs in Call Centres.

Some perceptions are true. Union activity is on the rise. 19% of Call Centres surveyed are union shops, and unionization rates have risen 54% annually over the past 3 years. In addition, staff turnover, often more than 20% per year, is also still an industry issue.

The above data is from CPA's 2005 3rd annual Canadian Call Centre Salary survey. The full survey report (44 pages) can be purchased for $299+ gst at CPA is the largest peer-to-peer Call Centre association in Canada. For more info, contact Elizabeth Winter.

Contact Information

  • The Contact Professionals Alliance Inc.
    Elizabeth Winter
    (416) 410-4663 or (866) 465-2233
    #100- 2 Bloor Street West, Toronto M4W 3E2