I’ve never thought of myself as a “green” worker, but for the past 17 years, I’ve been working from home, not commuting, not adding to air pollution and helping to reduce greenhouse gases.  I even hear that my productivity is increased 10-15% without all the distractions of a busy office.call_center_cubicles1

Advances in technology have taken the work-at-home model to more corners of the business world than there were when I began.

What about the Call Center?

I think of large rooms with hundreds of employees on headsets in cubicles.   With the right tools, these employees are now working from home at increasing numbers.  Datamonitor predicts a 36.4% growth rate through 2012 in at-home customer care employees and IDC predicts 300,000 work-at-home agents by 2012.  ACS is an award winning leader in the customer care industry for more than 20 years. With more than 34,000 agents in 150 customer care centers around the world, ACS employees handle nearly 400 million customer interactions annually in 20 different languages.  WOW.  They know how to do it well, and they’ve been steadily taking all that knowledge home, literally.   ACS’s work-at-home program is growing faster than actual customer care facilities.

ACS is continuouACS At Home Customer Care Representativesly searching for creative solutions for call center customers that are looking to be more cost efficient with environmental and employee benefits.  The company’s work-at-home program marries these goals.  What happens when more customer care employees work from home?  Well, like me they will:

  • Eliminate an estimated 1,267,000 metric tons in air pollution*
  • Cut over 156 million gallons of gas  or save about $468 million*
  • Reduce commuting expenses by $1.7 billion*

That’s honest-to-goodness savings, good for the company, good for the employee and good for the planet.

*IDC 2008 survey predictions as reported in Call Center magazine, October 2008 issue.

–Karen Arena, Xerox public relations consultant