ICMI is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.


Turn over Call Center Staff without Turning over the Data

Are attrition rates in the contact center industry improving at all? According to Dimension Data’s “2015 Global Contact Centre Benchmarking Report,” a survey of almost 900 international contact centers, the answer is no.

When is turnover at its worst? In their latest survey, they report that 37% of attrition occurs within first six months of service, and that 15% of that occurs during training as roles become increasingly complex. And the contact center isn’t getting any less complex, what with a greater reliance on new technologies, a host of new engagement channels, and less time and budget allocated to coaching and training. Data Security

According to Ken Landoline of IT Connection, “The cost of replacing a contact center agent can amount to a year’s salary when the direct and indirect costs of recruiting, interviewing, training, start-up times and the disruption of customer service and satisfaction are considered.” Turnover is ingrained in the business, and it’s not cheap, but can you guess what’s even more expensive than losing an agent? It’s losing your customer’s proprietary data.

For a physically located center, it’s not too difficult to keep your information assets safely protected inside your network perimeter. Firewalls, endpoint controls, and building security are highly effective. But with 70% of organizations using a premise-based call center presently plan to move to the cloud, according to a 2014 CCNG and Evolve IP survey, how do you secure data with remote or Work@Home agents? Tricky.

The obvious answer is to control your agent’s endpoint device (desktop PC, laptop, tablet, etc…) so that no data can ever be removed from it. For example, you can have your IT team physically disable the device (block off the USB ports) or limit the connections to printers. But there’s still a storage problem, as the data may be on the device, causing a wealth of compliance and master agreement issues.

To limit storage, you could shift to lower-cost machines with little to no storage capacity, like thin point or zero point devices. You can also choose to run virtual desktops on every device, so all applications and data are only accessed from a server in a data center (yours or a vendor’s). Virtual desktops (referred to as VDI) can be run internally by your own IT department or “rented” as a secure service from a technology provider (referred to commonly as Desktops-as-a-Service or DaaS). DaaS is popular because it frees business from the financial burdens of hardware investment, specialized IT expertise, compliance and security issues and ongoing maintenance.

Whether using DaaS or internal VDI, controls assure that an agent has no way to download, copy, print or email your customers’ data. An endpoint device that is broken, lost or not returned at the end of employment is no longer a data risk. So while staff turnover is a given, the potential turnover of your customer’s data no longer has to be.