Expert casts doubt on counselling findings

An expert has poured cold water on findings that as many as nine out of 10 call centres in the UK now offer stress counselling to reduce staff turnover levels.

Nearly 90 per cent of the call centres that responded to a Hay Management Consultants questionnaire said they had introduced personal counselling to offset the worst effects of the work.

But the head of one of the UK’s largest stress counselling services disputed the findings. “I would be extremely surprised if the figure is so high given that only 40 per cent of businesses as a whole offer anything that could be described as counselling,” said Dr Michael Reddy, chairman of Independent Counselling and Advisory Services.

Counselling alone would not cut turnover rates because it did not attack the root cause of the stress, which is the type of work, he said.

Hay consultant Anthony McNulty said, “Offering counselling to pressurised employees and introducing new incentives are clear signs that call centre managers are determined to tackle these problems.”

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