New research predicts that the number of people employed in call centres in the UK will continue to grow even though many firms are ‘offshoring’ work to countries such as India.
A report from market analysts Datamonitor says that the number of staff in British call centres has reached 435,000 and will increase to almost 500,000 over the next four years. The number of call centres is expected to rise from 5,980 to 7,320 over the same period.
The figures represents a rise in the proportion of the workforce employed in call centres from 2.3 per cent in 2003 to three per cent by 2008.
Financial services were the biggest employer of call centre services at the moment, but growth is expected to be fuelled by the public and healthcare sectors.
Peter Ryan, author or the report, said: "Given its maturity, the UK call centre industry could appear a daunting challenge for new entrants.
"However, there will be excellent opportunities in specific niche areas and particular industry groups, for example, the public and healthcare sectors.
"Success in the UK call centre industry will mean concentrating on developing offerings for smaller centres."