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Year : 2013  |  Volume : 3  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 3-9

The prevalence and impact of voice problems in call center operators

Department of Speech and Hearing, MCOAHS, Manipal University, Manipal, Karnataka, India

Correspondence Address:
Usha Devadas
Department of Speech and Hearing, MCOAHS, Manipal University, Manipal - 576104, Karnataka
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/2230-9748.118696

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Background: Since the past 10 years, the call center industry has expanded rapidly in India. Effective and healthy voice is a primary need for these professionals. Voice problems may threaten both the working ability and occupational health and safety of call center operators (CCOs). Western literature reports higher prevalence of voice problems in CCOs: Yet such investigations are not reported in India. Hence, the present study was focused on investigating the prevalence of voice problems among CCOs and its impact on their working performance. Materials and Methods: A cross sectional survey study was conducted using self-reported questionnaires. Data for the present study were obtained through convenient sampling by distributing 2000 questionnaires in 11 voice-based call centers in Bengaluru, Karnataka, India. The results of the study are analyzed and discussed, based on 1093 eligible questionnaires. Results: The career and point prevalence of voice problems in CCOs were observed to be 59% and 27%, respectively, with no significant gender difference (P > 0.05). The impact of the voice problem in terms of missing work was found to be significantly greater in female CCOs as compared with their male counterparts. Conclusions: This study supports the findings in the literature that CCOs are at greater risk of developing voice problems and that voice problems affect their performance. Thus, there is a great need to identify the risk factors associated with these voice problems and educate the CCOs and employers/organizations about the consequences of voice problems for monitoring effective functioning of CCOs.

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