How Wearable Devices Could Impact Call Center Productivity

How Wearable Devices Could Impact Call Center Productivity

There are a number of factors that could play into the success of a working at a call center. Because those employees never or rarely see clients face-to face, characteristics like tone of voice and the length of a call need to be honed to a fine art.

Now, there are devices that can let call center employees know if they’re on the right track for being productive, or how they might improve, which could be extremely beneficial to productivity. Keep reading to discover what these devices are and how they work.

Devices Worn on a Salesperson’s ID Badge

Made by a company called Sociometric Solutions, these wearable devices are attached to an employee’s identification badge. Although they don’t record conversations, the sensors are equipped with voice monitoring software that can gauge things like the speed at which someone is talking and whether or not the voice is being adequately emotive.

In addition to those vocal analytics, the devices include motion sensors to check a person’s proximity to other individuals in a room when carrying on a sales conversation. They can even detect the quality of his or her posture, which might confirm whether or not a person is starting to feel fatigued.

Algorithms Compare Captured Data to Sales Performance

After the data mentioned above is recorded, it’s measured with proprietary algorithms to see how closely employees are meeting sales targets. Bank of America is one prolific client that has used the new devices, and representatives there say they helped identify the need for group breaks, which boosted employee productivity by more than 10 percent. Michael Arena, a former human resources executive for the company, appreciated how the devices can offer objective snapshots of a person’s behavior during given moments in time.

Ben Waber, the president, CEO and founder of Sociometric Solutions, says both employees and employers win by using the devices. Employees learn how certain behaviors can impact sales, and employers might get insight about how to reduce employee turnover and help workers get more done during days at work.

wearable tech

Praise and Concern

People in favor of the productivity sensors discuss how they’re helpful for measuring things that would be very hard to track otherwise. However, there are also people who assert the measurement devices make them feel like the boss is never quite far enough away for a person to breathe easily while at the workplace.

Sociometrics Solutions clarifies an employee must consent to wearing the iPhone-sized devices, and that information received only relates to a call center team at large, not specific individuals.

There’s no doubt working in a call center requires special skills, especially since there’s no way for salespeople to rely on anything other than verbal cues. Interestingly enough, much of the data collected after studies with the devices indicated the need to change the structure of breaks at the workplace, not things that happened when a worker was actually on the clock.

Through techniques like time tracking, employers have long depended on ways to see how employees are doing at the office. Sociometric Solutions just may be showing call center employees glimpses of what the future holds.

Image by Viktor Hanacek and


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Kayla Matthews is a technology writer and the editor of Productivity Bytes. Her work has been featured on Digital Trends, MakeUseOf, VICE, VentureBeat, The Daily Dot and WIRED, among others. Follow her on Twitter to read her latest posts.

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