Robots aren’t like you and me

Having worked in the call centre industry for many years, I have seen how technology has enabled centres to grow and offer greater efficiency. However, there is a limit to how far technology will go. It seems ridiculous that a call centre would invest 90 per cent of its budget in technology, with only ten per cent left for the human aspect (MW September 12). What are call centres for, if a customer can no longer have all their enquiries dealt with over the phone? If you’re going to automate everything, you’re neglecting the very fundamentals of what a call centre stands for as a customer relationship tool.

As the article went on to mention, there is a danger of technology devaluing what call centres do, not just by making customers dissatisfied and disillusioned, but from an internal viewpoint. With small investment in training or careers, how will we retain call centre staff and, with them, the future of the industry?

After all, technology can’t identify the anger in a customer’s voice; it can’t deal with non-scr

ipted enquiries; and it certainly can’t up-sell or cross-sell. Those are skills that require investment in the people on the end of the phone.

Paul Turner

Prolog Connect


Latest from Marketing Week


Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now


Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.


From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.


Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3703 or email

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here