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UK BPO firms set to beat India
May 12, 2004 12:53 IST
Contrary to apprehensions in certain quarters, Britain's call centre industry is healthy and it is set to grow four times more than India, gaining around 200,000 jobs over the next three years, according to a study which is said to be the first comprehensive report on the United Kingdom's call centre industry.
The study commissioned by the Department of Trade and Industry said, "The sector is healthy and is set to employ over 1 million people by 2007, four times more than India in the same year."
The industry has already grown by almost 250 per cent since 1995.
The findings from 'The UK Contact Centre Industry: A Study' said the quality of service in UK call centres was high but the government and industry need to work to 'improve perceptions' of the sector.
It said the skills of the call centre workforce needed further improvement -- particularly 'soft skills' like communication and customer service.
Customers, employees and trade unions should be consulted before moving call centres overseas, it said adding that the UK call centres should compete with offshore centres on the basis of improving quality rather than cost.
The Trade and Industry Secretary Patricia Hewitt said UK call centres are unbeatable in quality.
"The best British call centres are the best in the world, offering high value businesses, highly skilled professionals, but we need to bring the quality of the rest up to that of the best," she said.