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Home > Business > Business Headline > Report

Why BPO employees quit their jobs

November 17, 2007 10:50 IST

Contrary to the usual belief that most youngsters do not like joining business process outsourcing (BPO) firms due to stress and health issues, a joint annual survey by Dataquest and IDC reveals that they are not 'killer'issues for employees.

In fact, stress and health weren't even among the 'top three' factors for leaving a company.

Union Health Minister A Ramadoss recently called for a "health policy for the tech sector", stating: "(BPO employees) have a sedentary lifestyle. They smoke, go for late-night parties, and even take drugs. Some get heart attacks in their mid-20s..."

However, strain as a reason for leaving a company ranked seventh while health issues stood at number six, according to the survey.

"Health as a stress factor is indeed a concern with a fifth of employees citing health as a stress factor. The good part is that the industry is sensitive to this and many companies are taking real measures, from checking indoor air quality to testing food in labs," said Kapil Dev Singh, Country Manager, IDC India.

Employees of Indian BPO firms, on the other hand, were overall content with their jobs in 2007, states the survey. They were satisfied with the job content, work culture, training, and appraisal.

However, it added that they were not satisfied with the image they were stuck with, and least satisfied with their salaries. The average salary hike in the BPO industry grew by 14.8 per cent only in 2007 as compared to an increase of 17.2 per cent last year.

The direct outcome of the fall in salary hike is the increase in attrition rates. The attrition rate went up to 20 per cent from 18 per cent in 2006.

The Dataquest-IDC survey notes that nearly one-third of the employees said that salary was the most common reason for leaving a company. The survey added that many companies have started innovative HR strategies to retain their employees.

Hyderabad-based Brigade, for instance, appointed a chief fun officer to look into ways of ensuring low employee stress levels and keeping them highly motivated.

The survey also revealed that while large firms ranked better in parameters like work culture and image, niche companies were better in terms of salary and job content.

Of the 1,749 employees surveyed as a part of the survey, 32 per cent complained of having sleep disorders, followed by 25 per cent as having digestive disorders and 20 per cent of having eye-sight problems.

The survey measured employee satisfaction was based on 11 parameters. In terms of employee's satisfaction, the top five slots were held by vCustomer, e4e Business Solutions, IBM Daksh, Genpact and Wipro [Get Quote]. HCL Technologies [Get Quote], Allsec Technologies [Get Quote], Ajuba Solutions, Equinox Global and Brigade occupied the next five employer slots in terms of employees' satisfaction.

TCS [Get Quote] BPO and 24X7 Customer, which were in the top 10 list last year, fell 4 and 6 places in 2007 to be at number 13 and 16 respectively. Brigade and EXL Services moved up two places each to end at number 10 and 11 respectively.

Companies like Infosys [Get Quote] BPO, WNS, Intelenet and India operations of the world's largest BPO firms Convergys and TelePerformance did not participate in the survey.

The Dataquest-IDC BPO E-Sat survey 2007 was based on the feedback from 1,749 employees belonging to 19 companies located in cities like Mumbai, Pune, Kolkata, Delhi NCR, Chennai, Ahmedabad, Hyderabad and Bangalore.

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