Tricks Of The Trade: Call Center Characteristics

By James C. Elledge, IFMA Fellow, CFM, FMA, RPA, RIAQM
Published in the March 2011 issue of Today’s Facility Manager

Q What are the main characteristics of facility management responsibilities at call centers and contact center companies?

Anastasia Makovets
Facility Manager

A One of the main things you’ll want to do is create the right environment for the workers in the centers. This will involve several aspects of the facility:

  1. Infrastructure: Depending on the level of criticality for the center, you will need to provide adequate utilities (like power and air conditioning) that are always available. If the phones and computers are down, the center cannot function. You may be dealing with multiple power feeds, emergency generators, UPS systems, as well as data and voice network suppliers.
  2. Work Areas: Through observation and experience, you will be able to design workspaces that allow employees to perform their duties in an environment with enough privacy to process calls, the necessary tools (phone, computer, monitor, etc.) to complete calls, and ergonomically equipped chairs and worksurfaces which allow the work to be done in comfort, eliminating lost time caused by poor design.
  3. Training/Conference Areas: Call centers usually require many different rooms to accommodate employee training, counseling, and project meetings. The different sizes will need to allow for one-on-one sessions, group meetings, and large assemblies.

Your space for employees will be less than most standards you will see, since you will have more employees in smaller work stations. You will have to address service calls for too hot/too cold, lighting, restroom supplies, and how to perform the work if the center is always occupied.

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