Why the North is best for contact centres

Recently published reports from CV-Library have revealed that customer services workers are in the worst paid sector, with the average income falling to 36.8% lower than the average income across the nation. This comes after another drop in the typical pay of a customer services worker, which has gone from £20,831 to £19,992 over the course of just one year. It is certainly not a great financial time to be working in contact centres.

It’s not so grim up north

While this is certainly not great news, the story is not quite so bleak for those living in the northern cities of the UK.  The higher expenses associated with living in the south of the country – and particularly the colossal costs of London – mean that people working in contact centres located in these areas end up with a much smaller disposable income, and therefore an overall poorer quality of life compared to people with the same jobs further north. The lower running costs of operating in northern areas are also very attractive to employers, with improving transport links and development in business communications, many companies can move out of expensive areas in the South with minimal risks.

The data suggested that customer services workers living in Liverpool generally spent around £862 on the typical standard costs of living. This left them with £804 left over of disposable income, to spend as they choose. In comparison, a person with the exact same job, using the estimation that they would earn the same average monthly salary of £1,666, in Portsmouth could expect to have to put aside a massive £953 just to maintain basic living standards, retaining much less at the end of the month for themselves: just £713, almost equating £100 every month.

Good for employers and employees

It’s not surprising, then, that many workers sector are seeking work in more northern countries in a bid to obtain a higher quality of life and avoid constant stresses regarding money, especially with developments like Edinburgh becoming the UK capital of technology start-ups. Lee Biggins, director of CV-Library, has himself stated that both businesses and professionals should consider relocating further north, taking into consideration the wealth of skilled workers currently residing outside of London and the surrounding areas. Of course, moving northwards doesn’t necessarily mean having to find a whole new job, with the ease of working from home, or from elsewhere away from the office, constantly increasing.

We can, perhaps expect to see a slight shift in the spread of contact centres across the UK, with more and more becoming based in the more affordable, more northern regions of the country as fewer customer services workers are able to continue to live comfortably further south. Unless the wages of these workers cease to fall so rapidly, living in expensive areas will simply no longer be an option.
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