Kim Perez threw in the towel on commuting three years ago. Now, Perez gets to work by climbing a dozen stairs in her sweats to a desk in her bedroom. The mother of three works as a home-based customer service agent and sets her shifts in half-hour blocks, around school schedules and PTA meetings.Working from home has long been attractive to some. Now, there's a growing number of American workers who crave control over their schedules, hate their commutes, are frustrated with high gas costs and want to become home-based customer service agents.
Experts say the industry has hit a growth spurt: The number of home agents will triple between 2005 and 2010, predicts Stephen Loynd, manager at IDC, a Framingham, Mass., research concern. Almost anyone with a broadband Internet connection, a computer and a phone can get up and running.
There's pent-up demand from companies, too. Instead of sending call center work overseas, a growing number of consumer products and services companies, from Office Depot to Walgreens, are outsourcing work to virtual call center firms.
People who would never dream of taking a job in a brick-and-mortar call center now are choosing to become home agents. Loynd says the trend has benefits. "People working from home are less apt to quit their jobs."
Source: CRM Buyer, http://crmbuyer.com
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