Tuesday, January 11, 2005

For quality control your rants will be monitored...


Monitoring is intended to track the performance of call center operators, but the professional snoops are inadvertently monitoring callers, too. Most callers do not realize that they may be taped even while they are on hold.

It is at these times that monitors hear husbands arguing with their wives, mothers yelling at their children, and dog owners throwing fits at disobedient pets, all when they think no one is listening. Most times, the only way a customer can avoid being recorded is to hang up.

Dr. Milgram, we really need you now.

Some privacy advocates worry that monitors, as well as operators, can steal customer passwords and other sensitive data. Thus far, few documented cases of identity theft have been unearthed involving monitors, and most monitoring companies screen their applicants. State wiretapping laws generally do not provide protection against recording of call center conversations (the taped message at the start of the call is in most cases considered an adequate privacy warning).

Fears of identity theft have not slowed the monitoring business. In fact, under tighter scrutiny by regulators, most financial institutions are now taping all their calls....

As more call centers move offshore, companies are starting to outsource the monitoring, too.

Wonderful. Somebody might steal your identity in ???? and you'd never know it. Unless they were being monitored. And their monitors were being monitored...

Operators who can defuse aggression - a not-insignificant talent - win plaudits. Operators also have to deal with the slow talkers, the lonely chatterers and the absent-minded. At night, the drunks come out.

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