Mizanur Rahman, Saadiyah Darus, Nazia Hussain



This paper attempts to investigate whether or not the English competency of Customer Service Representatives (CSRs) is hindering the growth and development of outsourced call centers in Bangladesh. It also looks into the problems being faced by call centers in hiring English competent CSRs.  A limited appraisal of the English communication training of the CSRs offered by Call Centre Training Institutes is also within the purview of the paper. With this purpose 33 supervisors of different call centers, who are in charge of monitoring the CSRs, have been interviewed with a questionnaire comprised of both close and open ended questions.  The result shows there is scarcity of skilled English communicators which is one of the major barriers in the growth and development of the call centers. However, factors like product knowledge, intercultural communication skills, service personality are also crucial as they are integral for successful transaction and addressing them will pave the way for the progress of the industry. The result also implicitly indicates that mainstream education system in Bangladesh is still unable to produce competent English communicators.   The findings of the study reveal that the current shortage of skilled manpower can further become more acute when call center industry grows in line with the expectation of the government. It is also revealed that the call center training institutes are incapable of delivering the kind of training required for the aspirant CSRs. This study pinpoints the necessity of future research in several directions to ensure a balance between the demand and supply of native like fluent English communicators for call center Industry in Bangladesh.

Keywords: English language competency, outsourced call centers, CRRs



 Tulisan ini mencoba untuk menyelidiki apakah kompetensi bahasa Inggris Perwakilan Layanan Pelanggan (Customer Service Representatives/CSR) menghambat pertumbuhan dan perkembangan pusat-pusat panggilan pengalihluaran di Bangladesh. Tulisan ini juga menyelidiki masalah yang dihadapi oleh pusat panggilan dalam mempekerjakan CSR yang berkompeten dalam bahasa Inggris. Sebuah penilaian terbatas dari pelatihan komunikasi bahasa Inggris bagi CSR yang ditawarkan oleh Lembaga Pelatihan Pusat Panggilan akan menjadi pembahasan dalam artikel ini. Untuk mencapai tujuan ini, 33 pengawas dari pusat-pusat panggilan yang berbeda, yang bertugas memantau CSR, telah diwawancarai dengan kuesioner terdiri dari pertanyaan tertutup dan terbuka. Hasilnya menunjukkan ada kelangkaan staf yang terampil dalam bahasa Inggris yang menjadi salah satu hambatan utama dalam pertumbuhan dan perkembangan pusat panggilan. Namun, faktor-faktor seperti pengetahuan produk, kemampuan komunikasi antarbudaya, kepribadian layanan juga berperan penting karena semuanya merupakan bagian integral transaksi yang berhasil dan upaya peningkatan semua faktor tersebut akan membuka jalan bagi kemajuan industri. Hasilnya juga secara implisit menunjukkan bahwa sistem pendidikan utama di Bangladesh masih mampu menghasilkan individu yang berkompeten dalam bahasa Inggris. Temuan penelitian ini juga mengungkapkan bahwa kekurangan tenaga kerja yang terampil dapat menjadi lebih parah ketika industri pusat panggilan tumbuh sejalan dengan harapan pemerintah. Terungkap juga bahwa lembaga pelatihan pusat panggilan tidak mampu menyediakan jenis pelatihan yang dibutuhkan oleh para calon CSR. Penelitian ini menunjukkan perlunya penelitian masa depan di beberapa aspek untuk memastikan keseimbangan antara permintaan dan pasokan individu yang fasih berbahasa Inggris seperti penutur jati untuk Industri pusat panggilan di Bangladesh.

 Kata kunci: Kompetensi bahasa Inggris, pusat panggilan pengalihluaran, CSR

Full Text:



Ahmad, S. N. (2005). The application of communicative language teaching in Bangladesh. Dhaka University Studies. Journal of the Faculty of Arts. 1: 191-200.

Ahmed, T., Alam, Z. & Farida, N. (2004). Mapping out new directions for English at the universities, Paper presented at the BELTA (Bangladesh English Language Teachers' Association) National Conference held at British Council, Dhaka.

Alam, F. (2002). Using postcolonial literature in ELT. The English Teacher: An International Journal. 5/2: 123-136.

Bazerman, C. (1994). Systems of genre and the enactment of social interaction. In P. Freedman & P. Medway (Eds.), Genre and the new rhetoric (pp. 79-99). London: Taylor & Francis.

Bhatia, V. (1993). Analysing genre: Language use in professional settings. London: Longman.

Farida, N. (2008). A textual and contextual study of English language and literature essays: The case of First Year English Department students' writing in Dhaka University, Bangladesh. Unpublished Ph.D thesis, Centre for Applied Linguistics, University of Warwick.

Friginal, E. (2007). Outsourced call centers and English in Philippines. World Englishes 26/3: 331-345.

-------------. (2012). Evaluation of oral performance in outsourced call centres: An exploratory case study. English for Specific Purposes. 32/1: 25-35

Hamid, O. (2006). An apology for content-based instruction. Department of English, University of Dhaka Publication. Spectrum. 4: 80- 96

Hamid, O., Susse, R., & Khan, A. (2009). Private tutoring in English for Secondary Englsih school students in Bangladesh. TESOL Quarterly. 43/2: 281-308

Halliday, M. A. K. (1978). Language as social semiotic: The social interpretation of language and meaning. London: Edward Arnold.

---------------------. (1985). An introduction to functional grammar. London: Edward Arnold.

Hasan, M. K. (2004). A linguistic study of English Language curriculum at the secondary level in Bangladesh: A communicative approach to curriculum development. Ph.D Thesis. Language in India. 4. Retrieved on 20/4/2008 from

Hood, S., & Forey, G. (2008). The interpersonal dynamics of call centre interactions: Co-constructing the rise and fall of emotion. Discourse and Communication, 2(4), 389–409.

Hyon, S. (1996). Genre in three traditions: Implications for ESL. TESOL Quarterly, 693–722.

Khan, R. (1999). An Evaluation of the Writing Component of the Higher Secondary English Syllabus in Bangladesh. Unpublished PhD thesis: Centre for English Language Teacher Education, University of Warwick.

------------ (2000). The English Foundation Course at Dhaka University: An Evaluation.” The Dhaka University Studies, 57/1: 77-110.

Lockwood, J. (2012). Developing an English for specific purpose curriculum for Asian call centres: How theory can inform practice. English for Specic Purposes. 31: 14-24

Outsource. (2012). Bangladesh another South Asian sourcing hotspot. Retrieved on 12.02.2014 from http://bacco.org.bd/outsource.pdf

Martin, J. (1992). English text: System and structure. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.

Martin, J., & White, P. (2005). The language of evaluation: Appraisal in English. London: Palgrave Macmillan.

Raynor, J. (1995). Introduction of Compulsory English Language at the Tertiary Level: a Study Undertaken by British Council on behalf of University Grants Commision. Dhaka: The British Council

Siddiqui, R. (2004). Teaching non-native literatures in English in the global English Language classroom. Unpublished M.A thesis: CELTE University of Warwick

Sinha, B. S. (2005). Our English achievement tests and what we really achieve. Spectrum.1: 23-26

St. John, M. J. (1996). Business is booming: Business English in the 1990’s. ESP Journal, 15(1), 3–18.

Swales, J. (1998). Other floors, other voices: A textography of a small university building. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.

The Daily Prothom Alo. (2010, 25 Aug.). “Share Charsho Call Center Kaj Shurru Korte Pareni” (Four Hundred and Fifty Call Centers Have Failed to Start Operation). Retrieved 12 Feb. 2014 from http://www.eprothomalo.com/index.php?opt=view&page=3&date=2010-08-25

The Daily Star. (2010, Dec. 27). “Bangladesh among best spots for IT outsourcing”.

The Daily Star. (2010, Apr. 25). “Call Center: The Sky is the Limit”.

Dutta, S. K. (2001). English language and literature in Bangladesh: towards a methodology. In Alam, F. Zaman, N. and Ahmed, T. (eds.). Revisioning English in Bangladesh. Dhaka: UPL

Zaman, N. (2003). English. In Islam, S. (ed.) Banglapedia: National Encyclopedia of Bangladesh Vol 3. Asiatic Society of Bangladesh: 486-491

--------. (2004). National language policy. Bangladesh in the New Millennium: A University of Dhaka Study. Kalam, A. (ed.). Dhaka. University Press Ltd.: 203-213.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.17509/bs_jpbsp.v15i2.1235


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright (c) 2015 Jurnal Bahasa & Sastra

    p-ISSN 1412-0712  |  e-ISSN 2527-8312

Lisensi Creative Commons

JPBS is published by:

Fakultas Pendidikan Bahasa dan Sastra (Faculty of Language and Literature Education), Universitas Pendidikan Indonesia,

in cooperation with


View My Stats