Blessed are the Geeks, for they shall internet the earth

Outsourcing Getting Ousted
William Nett

Dell Corporation has announced that it's corporate tech support is returning to America from India. Complaints apparently have been pouring in about language accent barriers, hell desks reading from scripts, and overall poor communications. Surprised? I'm not. If I as a New York born and raised American have a difficult time explaining troubleshooting procedures to bean-counters, then what do you expect from a foreign company that lists English as a 'Second' language?

     Outsourcing products via sweatshops may be one thing (which I still do not condone Kathy), but outsourcing Customer Support and Service Industry jobs is quite another. Service Industries and Customer Support jobs require advanced communication skills. These skills include personifying experiences with the customer, comprehension of the customer's environment/situation, and the ability to communicate well with the customer. Now, don't get me wrong, I have nothing against India (except of course the fact that I cannot legally get a job there), they do have great technical skills... but even Indian co-workers agree that American English is difficult to learn and western culture is equally difficult to comprehend. They don't ride Harleys, do not insult each other in jovial situations, and our slang? Well, that's another story.

     Personally, I have dealt with India's help desks, and I'd rather dial through the automated gauntlet of telephone directory services... at least I can write my options down on paper for future reference (but the monthly 'recent changes' still pisses me off). I hope other companies see the realization of Dell's move... even if they are still not concerned with home and small office consumers... eventually they will be. Phone gauntlets are irritating, but like ignorant head-hunters, they're not going anywhere anytime soon, they just shift with new false hopes to technicians... (please press #)

     Still, it tires me to read about companies 'moving' help desk to India, to move means to transfer, both computer resources and personnel. But if the personnel 'cannot' be 'employed' at the new location, then it's not 'moving' is it? Wouldn't it rather be called 'selling' or 'exporting'? In any event, welcome back Dell... Merry Christmas.



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