GoResponse Telephone Answering Service Staff

Call centres urged to maintain health and safety standards

A new report has discovered that 25% of agents in call centres are often denied toilet breaks, with trade union Unison saying that this is a “significant risk” to employee health and safety.  In the surprising new report, it was shown that the pressurised environment of telephone answering services often meant that agents were closely monitored and unable to take steps to protect their health.

In Unison’s survey of nearly 800 call centre agents, it was found that 70% had suffered from eye strain in the past.  Meanwhile, more than 50% had experienced problems with their eyesight or hearing.  In addition, over 80% said that their work environment was stressful, with the stress sometimes filtering through to their personal lives.

Dave Prentis, Unison’s General Secretary, said: “That this survey has shown more than a quarter have had their basic right to a toilet break restricted or monitored is bad enough, but the physical toll on call workers’ eyes, ears and voices– the tools of their trade – is something that managers and organisations cannot ignore.”  He added that workers expect their employers to have a high duty of care towards them.

The report has highlighted how it is vital for call centres to take care of their agents.  And, for those companies wanting to outsource telephone answering services, selecting the right centre that treats their employees with care, is essential.

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