• 85% say noise results in agents and customers wasting time repeating themselves
  • 69% feel noise has a negative effect on their mental health and wellbeing

The call center industry is facing a concentration crisis, with background noise and poor sound quality affecting KPIs, damaging customer relationships, and exacerbating stress in the workplace.

IRIS Clarity, the AI-powered voice isolation software, surveyed 500 contact center agents in the US and UK, and found that 89% of agents believe noise negatively impacts call quality, the ability to communicate, and time to resolution. 85% noted that noise results in agents and customers needlessly repeating themselves, which costs the business money. And 69% say noise has a negative effect on their mental health — a key factor in an industry with staff churn of 30-45%.

The full results of the survey are now available in the company’s research paper, The role of audio in an increasingly digital world.

Whether agents are working from an office or remotely, background noise poses a problem. Noise around the agent (52%) and the customer (37%) were the biggest challenges identified by agents in an office. They were also in the top three challenges (39% and 27%, respectively) for agents working from home.


In an industry shifting rapidly towards digital, 56% of call center agents say customers are more difficult when compared to pre-pandemic. Reducing repetition and misunderstandings can go a long way towards reducing Average Handling Time, increasing Customer Satisfaction, and relieving agent stress.

Jacobi Anstruther, CEO of IRIS Clarity, commented: “Background noise is a crucial issue that needs to be addressed in the workplace, particularly in call centers. As companies grapple with the acceleration towards virtual communications and the strain that places on productivity and wellbeing, it’s time to consider how we improve both the agent and customer experience. That’s why we built IRIS Clarity.”

Using the latest in AI, IRIS Clarity integrates with all popular VoIP platforms, removing background noise from customer calls. Real-time and bi-directional, IRIS Clarity allows participants on both sides of a call to enjoy clear voices. IRIS Clarity keeps the focus on what matters — the conversation — bringing control to uncontrollable environments.