The Ergonomic Effect

Still not convinced of the benefits of ergonomic programs among contact centers? Many studies over the years have demonstrated the positive effects of ergonomics. Some are highly documented. Some are anecdotal. Here’s a few to help you understand the significant impact a proactive approach to ergonomics can have on your organization.

• At one cable TV company, merely repositioning the keyboards and monitors resulted in a 10% increase in calls handled each day.

• A study at one insurance company showed that ergonomic furnishings costing the company approximately $500,000 contributed more than $620,000 in improved productivity.

• At a telephone company, the introduction of an ergonomic program cut agent turnover rates from 35% to just 2% per year.

• A major insurance carrier completed several “before-and-after” studies of upgrades from open, bullpen-furniture arrangements to enclosed cubicles, noting productivity increases ranging from 5% to 21%.

• Ninety percent of the 200 decision-makers responding to a survey said better office design can improve productivity. And 68% said they had increased productivity and decision making by placing group members together. (The survey was conducted by the American Society of Interior Designers.)

• A survey of one company’s employees conducted two months after they moved into a new building with an open office concept showed 60% believed that productivity had improved and 80% had a higher level of customer focus. One area of concern was the fact that only 40% of the employees felt the organization was effectively sharing its best practices across departments.

• Automation and agent performance – Another study looked at the impact that facilities have on worker effectiveness and job satisfaction in contact centers. The conclusions were drawn from a database of more than 1,500 respondents from a cross-section of 70 companies in seven major industry segments.

Kathryn E. Jackson, Ph.D is president of Ocean City, NJ-based contact center consultancy Response Design Corp.