The Hazards of Working in a Call Center

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Published: 16th November 2010
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The glitz and glamour of the call center profession slowly fades as health issues come into the fore. Some employees are forced to resign due to medical recommendations; others undergo stress management seminars in order to keep up with work demands. Truly, the risks of working in call centers are already manifesting in its workforce.





Studies show that people who are employed call centers are susceptible to stress and anxiety. This is because of the weakened "employee autonomy" which stems from the policies of the work environment. Employees frequently set aside simple personal duties like going to the restroom, recovering from irritation caused by an impolite caller, and eating meals on time in order to meet the call volume traffic.





Sleeping disorder is the most common problem that call center agents have. Because of the demand of keeping up with the company’s offshore operations, employees need to be awake for a very long period of time. Frequently, those in the nightshift team suffer distorted biological clocks because of interchanging daytime and nighttime.





Consequently, call center agents take their meals in different time frames. Shifting schedules cause them to eat at an earlier or later time. Worse, those having nightshift shuffle meal routines at exactly opposite mealtimes. For instance, one treats a dinner meal as breakfast before going to work at 6 o’clock in the evening. This leads to digestive-related disorders such as hyperacidity and ulcer. Some agents even suffer severe stomach ailments.





Moreover, a call center agent’s excessive exposure to electromagnetic radiation results to eyesight problems. Doctors say that working in front of computers without breaks causes extreme stress to the veins of the eye. Similarly, many employees have ear problems because of the headphones that are placed on the ears for a very long period of time. Thus, another common issue which call centers are trying to address to is hearing problem.





Many people are attracted to work in business process outsourcing because of the financial compensation that call centers give to their employees. However, call center jobs are becoming less popular because of the health hazards of working at a different time frame, with the given working conditions.

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