Latest News

Andrew Dittberner
December 08, 2016

Value vs Growth - are we at an inflection point?

in Office, Retail, Industrial, Hotels and Residential
Over the long term, value styled investing outperforms growth styled investing. However, for the last seven years, both globally and in South Africa, value investing has underperformed.
Nic Morris Texton Property Fund CEO
December 08, 2016

Texton Property Fund Limited appoints Nic Morris as CEO

in Listed Property, REIT, Real Estate Funds
Texton Property Fund Limited (JSE:TEX), a South African real estate investment trust (REIT) has appointed Nic Morris as its Chief Executive Officer (CEO), with effect from 1 December 2016.
Mall de Tete
December 08, 2016

Acquisition of a new a grade retial shopping centre anchored by multi-national tenants with US dollar underpined leases

in Listed Property, REIT, Real Estate Funds
Acquisition of a new a grade retial shopping centre anchored by multi-national tenants with US dollar underpined leases.
Jacek Baginski
Dec 07, 2016

Change to the board of directors and to the executive function of a director

Shareholders are advised that Mr Maciej Drozd will step down from his position as chief financial officer of EPP and Mr…
Aerial view Kgoro Precinct Sandton
Dec 07, 2016

Green Building Council South Africa launches Green Star - Communities Pilot…

The Green Building Council South Africa (GBCSA) today announced the launch of the locally applicable version of the…
Karen Petersen
Dec 07, 2016

United African Marine Insurance Brokers (PTY) Limited acquires 20 5202 retail land…

Two sites at the Cornubia mixed-use development north of Durban, will break ground early in 2017. 
John LoosFNB
Dec 07, 2016

Building confidence increases for second consecutive quarter in Q4

The FNB/BER Building Confidence Index rose to 40 points in 4Q2016, its best level in 12 months.
EDO Menlyn
Dec 07, 2016

Thought Leadership - Going Shopping

Value for money is always going to be a key motivator when it comes to shopper behaviour.

Popular

Sandton Convention Centre appoints new Exhibition Sales Manager

Nov 24, 2016
Daksha Vallabh Sandton Convention Centres new Exhibition Sales Manager
Daksha Vallabh joined the Sandton Convention Centre team as Exhibition Sales Manager in October 2016 bringing with her…

Cape Reit fund in pioneer JSE listing

Nov 15, 2016
Mike Flax Spear Properties Reit
Cape Reit Spear Reit becomes the first Western Cape region-specific property fund to list on the JSE.

Major face-lift for Pier Place in heart of Cape Town's Foreshore district

Nov 22, 2016
Pier Place view of rooftop garden
Recently acquired by Aria Property Group, Pier Place, a prime-situated 15-storey, 15 000sqm building in Jetty Street on…

15 days to Menlyn Park Shopping Centre’s fantastic new look

Nov 09, 2016
Countdown 15days
Menlyn Park Shopping Centre is close to completing its ambitious R2.5 -billion redevelopment which will position it as…

Park Square new R1bn mixed-use office and retail development in KwaZulu-Natal

Nov 30, 2016
Park Square
Nedbank today announced that it has committed to investing R1bn into a new mixed-use office and retail development in…

Busamed Private Hospital debuts in Modderfontein New City

Nov 25, 2016
Busamed
One of the country’s foremost black owned healthcare groups Busamed today announced the opening of the world class…

Featured

  • CEO Profile: Hard work pays off handsomely for Marius Muller, CEO of Pareto Limited

    CEO Profile: Hard work pays off handsomely for Marius Muller, CEO of Pareto Limited

  • CEO Profile: Innovation, entrepreneurship drive Mercantile Bank CEO, Karl Kumbier

    CEO Profile: Innovation, entrepreneurship drive Mercantile Bank CEO, Karl Kumbier

  • CEO Profile: Dealmaking and passion for property steer Laurence Rapp to Vukile Property Fund CEO position

    CEO Profile: Dealmaking and passion for property steer Laurence Rapp to Vukile Property Fund CEO position

  • Tower Property Fund's wobbly share price not a true reflection of group’s meteoric rise

    Tower Property Fund's wobbly share price not a true reflection of group’s meteoric rise

  • NEPI investors rubbing their hands with glee as property portfolio rakes in dividends

    NEPI investors rubbing their hands with glee as property portfolio rakes in dividends

  • Every building counts for award-winning property industry powerhouse, Marna van der Walt

    Every building counts for award-winning property industry powerhouse, Marna van der Walt

  • Fieldspace Property Management goes Green

    Fieldspace Property Management goes Green

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7

Featured Profiles

  • CEO Profile: Hard work pays off handsomely for Marius Muller, CEO of Pareto Limited

    CEO Profile: Hard work pays off handsomely for Marius Muller, CEO of Pareto Limited

  • Every building counts for award-winning property industry powerhouse, Marna van der Walt

    Every building counts for award-winning property industry powerhouse, Marna van der Walt

  • Fieldspace Property Management goes Green

    Fieldspace Property Management goes Green

  • CEO Profile: Innovation, entrepreneurship drive Mercantile Bank CEO, Karl Kumbier

    CEO Profile: Innovation, entrepreneurship drive Mercantile Bank CEO, Karl Kumbier

  • Tower Property Fund's wobbly share price not a true reflection of group’s meteoric rise

    Tower Property Fund's wobbly share price not a true reflection of group’s meteoric rise

  • CEO Profile: Dealmaking and passion for property steer Laurence Rapp to Vukile Property Fund CEO position

    CEO Profile: Dealmaking and passion for property steer Laurence Rapp to Vukile Property Fund CEO position

  • NEPI investors rubbing their hands with glee as property portfolio rakes in dividends

    NEPI investors rubbing their hands with glee as property portfolio rakes in dividends

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7

Company Profile

Dijalo Property Group

Dijalo Property Services

Dijalo Property Services was established by Saul Gumede, CPM® and Hosia Malekane who have more than 30 years combined property experience. Dijalo Property Services (Pty) Ltd is a 100% black-owned company established in 1998. The company has attracted skilled…

Property Leader

Peter Fechter

Peter Fechter

 Peter Fechter is an Independent Non-Executive Director of Growthpoint Properties.
Tuesday, 02 November 2004 02:00

SA holds its own in global call centre industry

Written by
Rate this item
(0 votes)
The South African call centre industry has doubled in the past two years, with major international firms outsourcing business here.

By Charles Jonker

The South African call centre industry has doubled in the past two years, with major international firms outsourcing business here.

In Gauteng, which already controls 60 percent of the industry, call centre operations are expected to grow by 40 percent in the next six months and to have doubled within three years.

India has 50 percent of all global offshore agent positions, but is facing stiff competition from South Africa, the Philippines, eastern Europe and Mexico. However, India sees significant staff turnover with some operators reporting 300 percent annual staff turnover.

In South Africa, by contrast, absenteeism and attrition are exceptionally low. At Call Centre Nucleus in Sandton, operations manager Tanya Smith reports that, in the past year, attrition has run at 4.55 percent, with absenteeism below 5 percent even though some of their centres run 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Silicon.com, a UK-based website, noted recently: "The UK call centre industry is still showing strong growth despite the threat from offshoring, but problems still remain with high staff turnover rates. One in four staff left last year on average, with the average length of stay being two years."

South African staff are showing stronger job commitment despite significant call volumes.

The new SA Tourism call centre, which began operating in September, is logging 5 000 calls a month, handled by 14 staff who speak English, Mandarin, Portuguese, German, Italian, French and Dutch.

The call centre industry is becoming an important source of foreign investment and job creation in South Africa. At Dimension Data's large contact centre operation in Sandton, 850 people work on one major US account alone.

At the high energy Standard Bank call centre run by Dimension Data in central Johannesburg, 49 agents have made 175 000 calls in little more than five weeks to check on whether bank clients are complying with new financial services regulations.

The agents have made 53 000 updates to the bank's database. That centre will run until December 2005 and makes an average of 9 600 calls a day. It is also one of the most cost-efficient contact centres in South Africa, given the low rentals and hi-tech secure accommodation found in central Johannesburg.

The Standard Bank contact centre is run by Daryl Shapiro who has 15 years call centre experience in the US and South Africa. He says that most companies go offshore to spread risk.

"At Dimension Data, we haven't taken away any American jobs. During the recent hurricane season in Florida, as an example, the billing and management hub of a major US client went down for close to a week, all those calls were transferred to us, we worked overtime and helped them avoid what could have been a calamity."

At Absa's Johannesburg call centre, 20 agents handle around 12 000 calls a month, or 525 calls per weekday for a US client, TransUnion. Although absenteeism is a low 7 percent, attrition is about 65 percent, mainly because US "awake" hours fall during the South African night 

Absa's Ronnie Tonkin observes: "Not everyone wants to come to work and leave at 3am. Anyone who can withstand these hours for long has pretty good stamina."

Tonkin says South Africa is becoming a preferred call centre destination because "ours is a service-orientated culture. South Africans will go out of their way to help. In India, 'agents' are very often little more than data-capture clerks."

Recent research by Deloitte UK estimates that in 2003, there were 80 000 full-time equivalent contact centre-seat positions in South Africa of which 10 percent to 15 percent represented offshore work, but represent 55 percent of revenue.

The most commonly offered foreign languages by South African contact centres include German, Dutch, French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Mandarin and Hebrew.

South Africa's pluses include a strong English-speaking population with a clear accent, a sound skills base, good standards of education, sophistication, a strongly motivated service culture, cutting-edge technology and geopolitical stability.

Dutch companies are interested in our contact centres because of the similarity between Dutch and Afrikaans. With brief training, Afrikaans acquires a distinct Dutch accent.

Outsourcing to call centres is popular because of a high rate of first-call resolution. Smith notes: "We have a major internet service provider (ISP) client and have an 85 percent resolution rate on the first call. If the person who takes the call cannot resolve a technical query, he passes it on to a more skilled person. If no solution can be found, they may go to see the client. With the top 500 clients of that ISP, we monitor their networks and may pick up a computer glitch before they do, we will then alert them and find a way to resolve it."

Gauteng call centres are among the most technologically advanced in the world. Further deregulation is helping. In September, the government announced that South Africa's value-added network providers will now carry voice and data through leased lines.

By February, prices will be lower. The Deloitte study shows that in 2003, there was a 39 percent increase in the number of European financial institutions with offshore operations, and an estimated 500 percent increase in offshore jobs. By 2010, more than 20 percent of the industry's global cost base is expected to have shifted offshore (from Europe or north America).

Agents' starting salaries are on average a third less in South Africa than in the UK, but within competitive local rates.

An article in Newsweek (October 18) notes that "experts say [outsourcing has] actually helped save western European companies by improving their global competitiveness".

From the time of the industrial revolution, exploration, new machines and innovation have seen markets spread and grow - and that change has encouraged dramatic advances for the benefit of all.


Charles Jonker is the chief executive of the Gauteng Economic Development Agency


Publisher: Business Report
Source: Business Report
Nedbank Property Finance is a market leader in commercial property finance, enabling you to realise your property opportunities through a diverse range of financing solutions.

Listed Property, REIT, Real Estate Funds

Nic Morris Texton Property Fund CEO

Texton Property Fund Limited appoints Nic Morris as CEO

December 08, 2016 Listed Property, REIT, Real Estate Funds eProperty News
Texton Property Fund Limited (JSE:TEX), a South African real estate investment trust (REIT) has appointed Nic Morris as its Chief Executive Officer (CEO), with effect from 1 December 2016.

Office, Retail, Industrial, Hotels and Residential

Andrew Dittberner

Value vs Growth - are we at an inflection point?

December 08, 2016 Office, Retail, Industrial, Hotels and Residential eProperty News
Over the long term, value styled investing outperforms growth styled investing. However, for the last seven years, both globally and in South Africa, value investing has underperformed.

Green Building and Sustainability

Aerial view Kgoro Precinct Sandton

Green Building Council South Africa launches Green Star - Communities Pilot Programme in South Africa

December 07, 2016 Green Building and Sustainability eProperty News
The Green Building Council South Africa (GBCSA) today announced the launch of the locally applicable version of the Green Star – Communities rating tool in South Africa.

Commercial Property Auctions

J_Arthur_Brown

Fidentia's One & amp; Only Hotel sells for R39m

December 02, 2016 Commercial Property Auctions eProperty News
Fidentia fraud case, masterminded by Fidentia boss J Arthur Brown, is over as his One & Only Hotel is sold for R39m.

Africa, International Property News

Andrew Coombs SRE

Sirius Real Estate targets main board

December 07, 2016 Africa, International Property News eProperty News
Sirius expects to move to the JSE's main board in late January or early February.

Construction, Energy and infrastructure

Menlyn Maine Casino Eastern Elevation which is the Main Entrance

Menlyn Maine - Time Square construction update

November 28, 2016 Construction, Energy and Infrastructure eProperty News
Construction on Sun International’s R4-billion Time Square casino and hotel development in Menlyn Maine, Tshwane, is fully on track, with the casino due to open on time in April 2017.

Most Popular

Sandton Convention Centre appoints new Exhibition Sales Manager

Nov 24, 2016
Daksha Vallabh Sandton Convention Centres new Exhibition Sales Manager
Daksha Vallabh joined the Sandton Convention Centre team as Exhibition Sales Manager in…

Cape Reit fund in pioneer JSE listing

Nov 15, 2016
Mike Flax Spear Properties Reit
Cape Reit Spear Reit becomes the first Western Cape region-specific property fund to list…

Major face-lift for Pier Place in heart of Cape Town's Foreshore district

Nov 22, 2016
Pier Place view of rooftop garden
Recently acquired by Aria Property Group, Pier Place, a prime-situated 15-storey, 15…

15 days to Menlyn Park Shopping Centre’s fantastic new look

Nov 09, 2016
Countdown 15days
Menlyn Park Shopping Centre is close to completing its ambitious R2.5 -billion…

Park Square new R1bn mixed-use office and retail development in KwaZulu-Natal

Nov 30, 2016
Park Square
Nedbank today announced that it has committed to investing R1bn into a new mixed-use…