Monday, September 30th, 2013
The call centre agent – a person many of us love to hate – isn’t paid nearly enough, considering the skills they will soon be expected to master, a new report has revealed.

The report – Looking to the future: The 2013 Contact Centre Trend, Salary and Leadership – found that the majority of Australian contact centre managers anticipate major changes to the contact centre agent role in the future.

Some 40% identify enhanced skills across multiple channels as the number one way in which agent skillsets will need to change and 87% cite emotional intelligence-related skills as the defining characteristic of long-term contact centre staff.

Publisher of the report, FuturePeople CEO Linda Simonsen, says the survey not only indicates that contact centre roles are becoming more complex and agents will need to increasingly develop emotional intelligence, but also that salaries will need to support the change.

“What we’re seeing here is the agent of the future will be both multichannel and emotionally intelligent,” says Simonsen. “They’re not just masters of engaging through technology, they’re masters of reading and interacting with people. That’s quite an ask for someone who might be on $45,000 a year.”  

The report also found that only 34% of contact centre agent respondents reported to be “moderately happy” with their remuneration, while 25% of managers said they were already facing skill shortages and 61% are struggling to recruit the right people.

Some 56% of contact centre agents receive a cash bonus that may be anywhere from $300 to $15,000 and 25% say they also receive other non-cash incentives. But is what we’re paying them enough?

“Is the typical agent’s salary of $45,000 a year enough to compete with the median Australian worker’s salary of $57,400?” Simonsen says. “Particularly when you factor in skills shortages within the contact centre industry right now, not to mention those that will develop in the future?”

Looking to the Future: The 2013 Contact Centre Trend, Salary & Leadership Report shares the insights of Australian contact centre managers and staff around the country who were surveyed in mid-2013. The report is being launched to industry leaders today in Melbourne and is available free online here.


About FuturePeople and Linda Simonsen

Linda Simonsen is the CEO and founder of FuturePeople, Australia’s most awarded contact centre recruitment specialist. FuturePeople offers a range of recruitment and leadership development services designed specifically for the contact centre industry. It also researches and publishes key contact centre industry material, like The Flexibility Report and The Heartonomics Report.

Linda Simonsen is both an entrepreneur and speaker, addressing a range of topics including employee engagement and its link to the bottom line, emotional intelligence and its link to high performance leadership and why the contact centre is every organisation’s deepest talent pool.

For more information and interviews contact:

Linda Simonsen
d  (02) 9024 2931   
m 0414 830 031

Moby Siddique
d (02) 8203 2714
m 0401 742 232


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contact centre, call centre, call centre trends, call centre salary, call centre performance management



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