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Working night shifts, long hours or broken shifts can cause fatigue in contact centre workers.

Several work and non-work factors are related to fatigue at work including:

  • inadequate amounts of sleep due to any cause (e.g. medical disorders, long commuting times, extended work hours and overtime)
  • disruption to sleep cycles
  • poor quality sleep
  • emotional issues
  • lifestyle factors.

Employers can minimise the effects of fatigue on their staff by:

  • ensure rosters provide an opportunity for a continuous seven to eight hours sleep in each 24 hour cycle
  • limit overtime as much as possible
  • provide adequate rest breaks, based on task demands and length of shifts
  • encourage workers to take regular and frequent breaks away from their desks in addition to scheduled and personal breaks
  • ensure adequate staff to meet peak periods and staff absences, including annual or sick leave
  • allow workers flexibility in shift rosters.

Workers in the contact centre industry are also likely to experience visual fatigue and vocal fatigue.