Competent, Connected and Confident: Female Career Success in Call Centres?


  • Vivienne Hunt University of Auckland
  • Erling Rasmussen Auckland University of Technology



This paper reports on the employment experience of women in New Zealand call centres. It seeks to determine whether women can develop satisfactory career progress and links the findings to the employment relations context in New Zealand. The study, initiated in 2003, reports on six case studies. Contra1y to the prevailing negative portrayal of call centre employment and career paths, our findings demonstrate women are achieving career success in call centres. Management practices can accommodate the different labour market needs of women, and many respondents reported feeling passionate about their jobs. Those working at entry level said they enjoyed meeting people and being part of a workplace, which enhanced their career prospects. Most respondents mentioned the development of skills and confidence, rather than deskilling, call centre processes have enabled many respondents to become competent, connected and confident.


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