The impact of a call centre on communication in a programme and its projects

Taryn Jane Bond-Barnard, Herman Steyn, Inger Fabris-Rotelli  

Call centres are increasingly being utilised in public sector programmes to facilitate and manage communication between numerous stakeholders. Yet, the impact of call centres on projects has not been investigated. This paper reports on a survey with 92 respondents that assessed the impact of a call centre for a repair and maintenance programme. An empirically verified model is presented to illustrate the relationship between call centre communication and project performance. A balance of frequent informal and formal communication is shown to reduce mistrust and conflict of interest resulting from each party trying to maximise his respective economic position in the principal–agency relationship. The data provides evidence that a call centre improves the communication, collaboration and trust in project principal–agency relationships which, in turn, is perceived to contribute to project performance.

Keywords: Communication; Project communication management; Call centres; Principal–agency theory; Project performance

International Journal of Project Management.  August 2013, 31.pp. 1006-1016.