Working in a Call Center: What You’ll Love and Loathe

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Call centers are more prevalent than you might think. They require little to no experience, which can make it easy to get your foot in the door, and most of them will train their employees from the ground up. There are a lot of advantages when it comes to working in a call center. From entry-level positions to competitive pay and benefits. However, there are many disadvantages to the job – being sedentary, long hours, and repetitive work. This article will give you the details of call center work, so you can decide if it’s for you.

Examples of Call Center Jobs 

When you think of a job in a call center, what exactly do you imagine? There is an assortment of jobs you could obtain that could be considered as working in a call center;

  1. Roadside Assistance
  2. Alarm Company
  3. Customer Service Representatives 
  4. Insurance Agencies
  5. Bank Representatives 
  6. Medical Representatives 
  7. Staffing Services
    Call Center ProsCall Center Cons
Entry LevelSedentary Work
Skill Set DevelopmentLow Job Security 
FlexibilityStressful Environment 
Remote WorkRepetitive Work
No Manual LaborDealing with Public
Competitive Pay/Benefits Shift Selection
Diversity Burnout
Dress CodeHigh Turnover Rate
Indoor WorkSleep Issues 

Call Center Pros 

When it comes to call center jobs, there are a plethora of reasons why it could be a good fit for you. Let’s jump into the bright side of things before getting to the nitty gritty. 

1. Skill Set Developed

As we previously stated, you aren’t necessarily required to come into a call center with a specific set of skills. However, you will hone in a specific set of skills right from the start. They begin training you from the ground up!

You’ll learn quality customer service, technological skills, telecommunication skills, and much more. If you ever decide to leave your call center job, all of these developed areas look great on a resume! 

Talking about resumes, if you need some help with the content, structuring, and styling yours, this article will be really helpful.

2. Entry Level

One of the best things about obtaining a job within the call center is that they require little to no experience. The majority of jobs that you will come across are listed as entry-level positions. These types of jobs are perfect for those who are new to the workforce. The good thing about entry-level jobs is that there are great opportunities for advancement if you stick with it! 

3. Flexibility

This is one of my favorite pros – flexibility! The majority of call centers operate with shift work. Which means that they have several different shifts available for their employees. Some organizations differentiate shifts between a day shift and a night shift. While others use a first-shift, second-shift, and third-shift system. So, whether you’re a day person or a night owl – there is likely a shift for you and your lifestyle. 

If you want more information about what 1st, 2nd and 3rd shift are all about, check out this post next.

4. Work From Home

For the past few years, we’ve seen an increase in call center jobs transitioning from in-office to remote – courtesy of COVID-19. The majority of places had no choice but to shut down or have their employees work from home. Even though we’ve long since been cleared to enter our work sites again – a large number of organizations have opted to continue running their business from the comfort of their home.

So, if you accept a position working for a call center – there is a chance you could be working from home full-time. Working from home has its perks for sure! You may even see some businesses that operate as a hybrid – half from home and a half from the office. If this sounds appealing to you, a quick search can help find the perfect job for you. 

If you do need to work from home overnight, play the video below. It will help you avoid some unnecessary traps!

5. Little Manual Labor

I can’t think of one call center job that requires you to do strenuous, constant, physical labor. Majority of the time you are sitting down in front of a computer screen for a large portion of the day.

If you’re working on-site, the only labor you may have to do is grab some boxes, restock supplies, or open the coffee bag! This pro is a double-edged sword because it can cause you to gain unwanted weight if you’re not careful, but we’ll get into that shortly! 

If you’re scared you’re going to fall asleep due to a lack of physical movement, here is a helpful guide on surviving life with a desk job at night.

If you do find with the lack of movement your body is cramping up, this ergonomic footplate will be perfect for under your desk if working from home. Your office may even have one in the storeroom.

6. Competitive Pay & Benefits

You’ll be hard-pressed to find a call center job that doesn’t offer a decent pay rate. It’s hard to find people who want to handle the stress of a call center – especially for minimum wage. Therefore, most offer a decent pay packet.

Now, people have a different understanding of what “decent pay” is, but for someone who is just getting in the workforce, it’s a great starting point! Plus, they offer things like health and dental insurance, pay increases, and other great incentives.

According to the average call center salary in the USA is $31,200 per year or $15 per hour. Entry level positions start at $27,300 per year while most experienced workers make up to $44,443 per year.

Before accepting the job, be sure that you are asking questions relating to pay and the benefits that the company offers. That way there are no surprises when you get hired. 

7. Diversity

The good thing about working in a call center is functioning with a diverse group of people. Because they have such a large pool of applications to choose from, chances are you’re going to be working with people from all different walks of life. 

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8. Dress Code

If you’re not all about dressing to impress – this might be the perfect field for you to be in. As you’re locked away in a room that’s seperate from the general publics prying eyes – chances are the organization is pretty lax on what you can and cannot wear to work. Most people just allow you to wear jeans and a t-shirt and call it a day. If you’re not required to turn on a camera, nobody needs to know the details of your outfit!

9. Indoor Work

You don’t have to fight against mother nature. Your job in its entirety has to be done indoors. So, the only time you’ll have to be outside is the walk to and from the building! Might save you a little extra money on sunscreen! 

Headphones on a desk

Call Center Cons 

Working in a call center is no different than any other job. You have your ups and downs. It’s my job to give you both sides so that you are able to make a well-informed decision on this line of work. So, let’s get into the downfalls of accepting a job within a call center. 

1. Sedentary Work

While working in a call center requires little to no strenuous physical effort – that could take a toll on your body.

You’ll be required to sit for up to twelve hours at a time. This could cause you to gain weight and potentially other issues due to inactivity.

There are ways of combating this; eating healthy, drinking water, and having a proper exercise routine. Sounds simple enough to say I know, but don’t fret, as we have lots of posts on this blog to help you out.

A lot of call centers have desks that lift so their employees can walk in place throughout the day – try doing that so you’re not constantly seated for hours at a time. You may also run into issues with your posture if you’re not sitting properly at your desk. Be sure to look up the proper sitting technique for a long period of time. 

If you’re working from home, a sit-stand desk is perfect. We have one and it’s really helped the old hips! Here is one with great reviews on Amazon which comes with some handy hidden hooks.

If your body aches after night shift, you’ll appreciate this post. It’s full of suggestions as to why you may be sore and what you can do to fix it.

2. Very Little Job Security

This is where I keep it real with you – there is very little security in your job. Because these are entry-level positions, it means a larger pool of applications. which makes it easier to get rid of employees and replace them in no time. So, it might always feel like you’re having to fight to keep your job. However, the way to combat that is to get in there and make yourself an asset to the organization. 

This post about boosting job performance has 15 great tips to have you in a better headspace for work. This will help you dig a little deeper to ensure you get noticed whilst on the job.

3. Stress

I don’t care what anyone tells you about a call center job – they can be very stressful. While they are not physically demanding, they can be mentally draining.

You’ll have to talk to hundreds of people each day (most of which will not be very nice to you, unfortunately). There will be times when you experience a high volume of calls and will be up to your ears in work.

It’s a fast-paced job industry and you have to hold your own. If you’re not able to work well under stress then this job may not be suited to you. 

Need some stress-relieving strategies at work? This post we wrote will help.

4. Repetitive Work

Honestly, there are times when you’re going to get just downright bored aswork in this industry is repetitive. While you may deal with an array of people on a daily basis, the work that you do will be pretty much the same for each call. So, if you’re not one who can go through the motions daily, you may want to find a job that’s ever-changing. However, if you’re a person who craves routine, structure, and predictability, this job will be perfect.

If you’re Bored on Night Shift? Here is how to Stay Busy Without the Internet.

5. People

If you’re not a people person (or can’t fake it very well), ABORT MISSION! As a call center representative, you’re going to talk to hundreds of people on a daily. You’re most likely going to get yelled at, cursed at, and belittled. So, if you’re not able to take it (or go into a special place where the criticism washes over you) then you might want to find a different line of work. 

6. Shift Selection

As we’ve already said, there are typically two or three different shifts that you can select or be put on. The bad part about that is that some organizations don’t allow you to choose between the two. Or they make you sign paperwork stating that you’re willing to work either shift. So, you may not be able to choose which shift you’re on and might not like what gets picked for you. Be sure to get your shift and hours in writing before accepting a position. 

In some organizations, there is a thing called shift bidding. I was new to the concept so thought it was handy to write a post about it. Check it out here.

7. Burnout

These types of jobs require a lot from their employees. That means working extra hours, often pulling an ungodly amount of overtime. It also means a heavy workload. If you’re not careful, you could experience burnout.

Burnout can leave you miserable and looking for an out. Just be mindful of the possibility of burnout when accepting these jobs. Go the extra mile so that you’re taking the necessary precautions to combat burnout. 

If you think you might be burnt out, this post talks all about it and this one helps you figure out what’s next.

8. High Turnover Rate

To go hand in hand with burnout, you need to know that the majority of these organizations will have a high turnover rate. You will experience people being fired or quitting left and right. This could call for low company morale. Though you should keep this in mind, it shouldn’t stop you from applying and have you walking around on eggshells when you start. Just do your best.

If you’re an employer reading this, here are 8 ways to motivate shift workers to help with staff retention.

9. Sleep Issues

These jobs likely come with shift work. Meaning, you’ll probably work odd hours. Therefore, you’ll likely end up having issues with sleep. Regardless of what shift you work, be sure you are getting the recommended hours of sleep each night or day. 

This site is all about staying healthy as a shift worker and a big part of that is getting enough sleep. We feature a range of posts and videos on our YouTube channel which strive to help you through this non-traditional routine with a solid amount of shut-eye. As a start here are a few bits a pieces to kick things off;

As you can see, there are an array of pros and cons when it comes to being employed by a call center.

For the most part, call center jobs are not bad to have. They just do not come without their own faults. Honestly, most of it has to do with the company you work for. That’s why I always suggest that before you apply for a job, look at reviews from other individuals who have worked there. You can learn a lot from previous employees. You’ll either see great things about that company consistently or you will see absolute horror stories about it. Take those reviews into consideration. You don’t want to be stuck at a job that not only makes you unhappy but those around you unhappy.

Every job has its pros and its cons. You just have to determine which pros appeal to you the most and which cons you’re willing to deal with.  As always, feel free to comment below with any questions.

Check out our repertoire of shift work blogs – we’ve more than likely answered a lot of the questions you may have like Navigating Job Loss: What To Do After Leaving The Workforce


Disclosure: This page may contain affiliate links, meaning we receive a commission if you decide to make a purchase through our links, but this is at no additional cost to you. Please read our disclosure and privacy statement for more info.

Daniel Smith

Managing a global sales team I've experienced the challenges of working at all hours of the day and night. Being a shift worker I know how tough it can be balancing everyday life when you feel like you haven't slept in weeks! Providing advice and tips on how to manage your schedule, whilst still staying healthy is where I can help.

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