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Four reasons why youngsters quit BPOs

December 16, 2004

BPOWhat drives young people to quit call centres and data processing units as fast as they join them?

As industry attrition rates (how soon people quit jobs) climb as high as 80 percent in some companies, human resource executives in various BPO firms tried to pinpoint the reasons that make young people between the ages of 22 and 26 shuffle jobs in months. They were participating in a seminar on key HR issues for the BPO industry in Bangalore today.

This is what they came up with.

1. BPO not seen a long term career

"This industry is still not being accepted for a long term career," said Mphasis BPO Services' chief human resources officer Manab Bose.

2. High aspirations that the industry cannot meet

BPO employees have high aspirations. They want to see 'wealth' in this lifetime and have low respect for authority. This is because most BPO employees have immense family support.

3. Good talent is prone to poaching

ICICI OneSource President and CEO Raju Bhatnagar said the pulls of the market (poaching by competitors) cannot be countered easily.

BPO firms try to pick the best talent, he explained, and good talent is prone to be poached or to shifting jobs. He suggested that firms should instead look at the average person, train and retain him/ her for the longer haul.

4. Employees face pressure at home and at work

Philips Software CEO Bob Hoekstra felt BPO employees are in a piquant situation, having to handle pressure both from their customers and at home.

"There is an enormous conflict in age group [in terms of the fact that] youngsters are serving mature customers, and they are prone to make mistakes," he said.

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