The Impact of Wearable Devices in the Call Center

August 12, 2014 • Devin Partida


There are a number of factors that could play into the success of working at a call center. Because those employees never or rarely see clients face-to-face, characteristics like the tone of voice and the length of a call need to be honed to fine art.  Wearable devices can let call center employees know if they’re on the right track when it comes to being productive, or how they might improve, which could be extremely beneficial to productivity. Read on below and get to know more about wearable tech and how they impact the call center industry

Wearable Technology on a Salesperson’s ID Badge

Made by a company called Sociometric Solutions, these wearable devices are attached to an employee’s identification badge. Although they don’t record conversations, the sensors are equipped with voice monitoring software that can gauge things like the speed at which someone is talking and whether or not the voice is being adequately emotive.

In addition to vocal analytics, devices include motion sensors to check a person’s proximity to other individuals in a room.  This is effective when carrying on a sales conversation. They will be able to detect if a person is starting to feel fatigued from the quality of posture.

What do Wearable Devices Measure: Sales Performance 

After the data mentioned above is recorded, it’s then measured with proprietary algorithms. This is to see how closely employees are meeting sales targets. Bank of America is one prolific client that has used the new devices.  Representatives there say they helped identify the need for group breaks, which boosted employee productivity by more than 10 percent. Michael Arena, a former human resources executive for the company, appreciated how the devices can offer objective snapshots of a person’s behavior during given moments in time.

Ben Waber, the president, CEO, and founder of Sociometric Solutions says both employees and employers win by using the devices. Employees learn how certain behaviors can impact sales, and employers get insight into how to reduce employee turnover.

wearable devices

Advantages and Disadvantages of Wearable Technology

People in favor of productivity sensors discuss how they’re helpful for measuring things that would be very hard to track. However, there are also people who assert that measurement devices make them feel like the boss is never far enough.  They feel it makes it hard for a person to breathe easily while at the workplace.

Sociometrics Solutions clarifies an employee must consent to wear the iPhone-sized devices, and that information received only relates to a call center team at large, not specific individuals.

Working in a call center requires special skills since there’s no way for salespeople to rely on anything other than verbal cues. The data collected after studies with the devices indicated the need to change the structure of breaks at the workplace, not things that happened when a worker was actually on the clock.

Through techniques like time tracking, employers have long depended on ways to see how employees are doing at the office. Sociometric Solutions just may be showing call center employees glimpses of what the future holds.

Image by Viktor Hanacek and