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Posted: 11/23/2003 1:42:43 PM EDT
Could the pendulum be starting to swing back?

www.chron.com/cs/CDA/ssistory.mpl/business/2242314

Dell to bring some jobs back home

Cox News Service

AUSTIN -- In a surprising about-face, Dell is returning some technical-support jobs from India to the United States.

The new U.S. employees will provide phone-based tech support for business customers. Dell employees in India have been answering some of those calls. Calls from individual customers will still be routed to call centers in India.

"We felt a little noise and angst from our customers, and we decided to make some changes," said Gary Cotshott, vice president of Dell's services division. "Sometimes, we move a little too far, too fast."

Dell's reversal comes as many U.S. companies are rushing to outsource operations to India and other nations with low labor costs. It suggests the savings some achieved by moving jobs overseas may sometimes be outweighed by the cost of antagonizing loyal customers.

It's unclear how many jobs the move might create in Central Texas, where Round Rock-based Dell operates several call centers for tech support and sales and employs 16,500 people. Dell's other U.S. tech support call centers are in Nashville, Tenn., and Twin Falls, Idaho.

Dell was among the first large U.S. companies to move tech-support jobs to cheaper call centers in India when technology spending plummeted three years ago. The list now includes Intel Corp., Microsoft Corp., Hewlett-Packard and Computer Sciences Corp.

English-speaking Indian workers are highly educated but earn a fraction of American salaries. Some customers have complained they can't understand Indian workers because of their accents and that tech support workers rely too heavily on scripted answers.
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 2:21:47 PM EDT
Wow! That will be nice. We only buy Dell servers. I had to call them a month ago to order something that wasn't listed on their web site, and ended up talking to some Indian dude. I could not understand him, and he could not understand me. He sent me the wrong part. I had it sent back and called again, and talked to another Indian guy. He sent me the wrong part. I was absolutely furious at this point. I didn't know Dell outsourced to India, but kinda figured it. I finall got ahold of some actual English speaking people and got it straightened out.
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 2:27:05 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/23/2003 2:28:13 PM EDT by hanau]
you all now if you can't understand them you can be asked to be transfer to a english speaking person,since you can not understand them.
that is from a dell customer service rep.
i do when ever i call for support.
always get transfer back to the states
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 3:09:36 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/23/2003 3:12:06 PM EDT by ProfGAB101]
Its about time.

I know several companies that outsource to India and when people call in, they say "don't you dare transfer me to India!"

They may have saved some money, but alienating customers will come back to haunt them when those customers are ready for the next generation of PC replacements/upgrades.

Edit: BTW HPaq is still in process of shifting more of its support to India.
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 3:25:10 PM EDT
Why India? Is there something wrong with Chinamen?
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 3:29:01 PM EDT
I really hate that sing song English them fucks speak
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 3:45:35 PM EDT
The average annual cost of an American high-school grad call center rep with PC, workspace and benefits? $67,000. You'll all seen these folks - 6 month average time on job, disciplinary problems, unreliable, not very "bright."

Average annual price of an Indian call center rep with Master's degree? $3,500. They work for you forever, and are actually very bright once you get over the language difference.

I'm with you guys about keeping America first, but I don't think many of you realize just how cheap it is overseas. I'm in a position to influence these decisions, and it's VERY hard to convince an exec that service levels and other "soft" losses affect the bottom-line enough to justify the cost difference.

There are some things I don't want to compete with - Chinese food restaurants, tech support, etc. Some people are willing to work for less than many of us. For those of you in that space, be prepared to compete for lower wages or move on to another field. Economics is simply crushing you at this point....

Black Fox
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 7:52:16 PM EDT
I have talked with them serveral times, no one there knows shit. I have talked with alot of people who have called Dell support too they say the same thing.
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 7:59:15 PM EDT
i fucking hate talking to those indian guys! the 5% of the time you can understand what they are saying, its worthless crap
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 8:02:36 PM EDT
Maybe my stock will go back up....one can only hope.
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 8:16:01 PM EDT
I don't know for sure, but it seems that Gateway has a lot of Indians also, because on the weekends that's all you get on the phones. And you can hardly hear them. Seems like they are a million miles away.

Did I mention they don't seem to know anything about computers either?!
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 8:19:03 PM EDT
They will continue to lose home sales. I had to deal with the Indian guy with my Dell and I couldn't understand a fucking word.
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 8:51:24 PM EDT
Hey, Black Fox why don't you fucking move to India if you like them much. There you go and stereotype American workers.
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 9:39:33 PM EDT
I’ve worked with enough exec types to know that when push comes to shove the ONLY thing that REALLY matters to a typical CEO/CFO type is THE BOTTOM LINE. How can we squeeze every last fucking cent onto the bottom line and then into the Quarterly Report? Period, end of discussion. “America First” and things like that SOUND good but given how the business world works today you’ll get your ass handed to you by your investors if you’re a public company. If you’re private then you can get away with it. The only reason Dell is starting to put people back to work in the USA is simple. They were losing customers (and hence MONEY) by trying to cut corners with the outsourcing. I think this is the tip of the iceberg. You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to figure out that customers are damned fed up with dealing with people that don’t know jack shit beyond the canned script and they can’t understand them to start with. It was a shortsighted decision, like all decisions that are only calculated to the next Quarterly Report, to outsource everything but the kitchen sink and it’s starting to bite these CEO/CFO’s on the ass. [b]GOOD![/b]
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 9:53:40 PM EDT
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 10:02:12 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Airwolf: The only reason Dell is starting to put people back to work in the USA is simple. They were losing customers (and hence MONEY) by trying to cut corners with the outsourcing. I think this is the tip of the iceberg. You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to figure out that customers are damned fed up with dealing with people that don’t know jack shit beyond the canned script and they can’t understand them to start with. [b]GOOD![/b]
View Quote
They still outsource to companies here The Answer Group, also Sitel. I work for one that canned script I dont like, they make me say that, and make me say "thank you for choosing cox communcations, your friend in the digital age." I hate saying that, I feel like a damned idiot. I know how to fix your problems, they want me off the phone with you in under 10 minutes. I also have to use your last name 3 times, offer an apalogy regardless if you just called to ask for an email server, I still have to make up an apalogy, refer you to a website that has no information you need. I hate the damned script they give me but I have to use it, makes it harder for me to fix your problem. Not to mention people spending 5 minutes putting a round plug into a square hole.
Link Posted: 11/23/2003 10:30:59 PM EDT
Originally Posted By BlackFox: Average annual price of an Indian call center rep with Master's degree? $3,500. They work for you forever, and are actually very bright once you get over the language difference.
View Quote
First, no Indian with a real masters degree is working at the call center. Someone like that is in the US on an H-1B or writing code for one of the big Indian programming companies. It's more common for an Indian who reports to have a BSCS or MSCS to actually have what amounts to a degree from Heald College or an AA degree. Take what they say with a grain of salt.
Link Posted: 11/25/2003 6:06:08 AM EDT
Dell has poor customer service. When I ordered my computer several months ago I had a hell of a time getting it ordered. I was speaking with a person that could speak English but did not understand it. I work for some folks that buy lots of computers and after I got fed up with trying to work with Dell I cancelled my order and sent several emails to their customer service. Two weeks later a manager called me and apologized and offered me several freebies if he could go ahead take my order. He assured me that Dell would take care of me and gave me a preferred customer number and then rushed my order thru. Now four month later with problem with my computer I can not get an answer from Dell's customer service even with my preferred customer number. I have had it with Dell and will never buy anything from them again. Next time I get a computer it will be from Best Buy and if I have a problem I will take it back to the store.
Link Posted: 11/25/2003 6:18:58 AM EDT
sorry but i don't buy the HIGHLY educated dell indian worker crap. I have worked intensly with them on several customers behalf. They may have a degree but they have VERY little practicle pc skills other than reading a script they are given by dell. Troubleshooting a PC by phone and ordering the wrong parts can be done by anyone. It does not require a masters degree. mike
Link Posted: 11/25/2003 6:36:08 AM EDT
You see Dell's new commercials? "Forget about mega-this and giga-that, just call and tell us what you want to do with your computer and we'll configure a Dell system to meet your needs!" Oh, yeah, that's going to work REALLY well with people who can't communicate in English and are incapable of working without a script. [rolleyes]
Link Posted: 11/25/2003 6:41:58 AM EDT
I was one of those angry loyal customers who complained about the lack of an English speaking operator. I had one girl who was understandable, but the other two guys I've recently had were HORRIBLE. I like Indians, my neighbors are from India and are great people to talk to, but on the phone is another story.
Link Posted: 11/25/2003 6:44:50 AM EDT
I've worked with some folks from India, and some of them are real bright, and so not so, they have their share smart & dumb people also. But the main problem is their very heavy accent. It is good that the written language is the same, so many things that I can't understand them, I have them write it down. But some of the US companies are so eager to hire these people that during the interview the big US companies get flam-flammed on the foreigner's experience.
Link Posted: 11/25/2003 6:58:43 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/25/2003 7:13:05 AM EDT by Duffy]
About time. I have only recommended Dell stations to my clients, I myself only buy from them, but their tech support sucks ass. Do a search on customer reviews on Dell and you'll often see "support", or more specifically, support from outsourced Indian folks as a negative. "A little noise"? This reason is enough for me to start recommending other manufacturers like IBM and HP, though they're more expensive they're worth not having to deal with the frustration of having to repeat myself 3 times, and making them repeat themselves 3 times because I don't friggin' understand them. Granted, some support folks in the old days from the US don't have a language barrier but they're plain stupid or indifferent, still it's better than dealing with the Indians. Don't kid yourselves the Indians are more educated. These script and flow chart monkeys all go to and shake a bake "tech support" class, and out come "tech support" people, yeah right. I have years of in the field experience, education and certs to back them up, and I still find using the phone to troubleshoot difficult at best. I find more often than not, these god damn "support" aholes just wanna get you off the phone, they'll say "do this, and do that, and if that doesn't work call us back", well what are the chances you'll get to talk to this jackass again? When I call "support", I really don't need their help, I just want to have them send me the parts to replace what I have already diagnosed to be the cause of problems. As always these rigid, flow-chart-following, script-reading monkeys want me to use their worthless diagnostic CD, which never finds ANYTHING. Anyone in this business should know by now that using software to diagnose hardware problems just doesn't work, too bad nobody over there knows.
Link Posted: 11/25/2003 10:37:59 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/25/2003 10:39:44 AM EDT by Airwolf]
New story with more details: [url]http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,103955,00.html[/url] Dell to Stop Using Indian Call Center for Corporate Customers Monday, November 24, 2003 AUSTIN, Texas — After an onslaught of complaints, computer maker Dell Inc. (DELL) has stopped using a technical support center in India to handle calls from its corporate customers. Some U.S. customers have complained that the Indian technical-support representatives are difficult to communicate with because of thick accents and scripted responses. Tech support for corporate customers with Optiplex (search) desktop and Latitude (search) notebook computers will instead be handled from call centers in Texas, Idaho and Tennessee, Dell spokesman Jon Weisblatt said Monday. Calls from some home PC owners will continue to be handled by the technical support center in Bangalore, India, and Weisblatt said Dell has no plans to scale back the operation there. "Customers weren't satisfied with the level of support they were receiving, so we're moving some calls around to make sure they don't feel that way anymore," Weisblatt said. He would not discuss the nature of the dissatisfaction with the call center in Bangalore. Dell is one of a number of high-tech companies that have in recent years moved jobs to India and other developing nations for the cheaper labor, which in Dell's case helps keep down the cost of providing round-the-clock support. Corporate customers account for about 85 percent of Dell's business, with only 15 percent coming from the consumer market. Worldwide, Dell employs about 44,300 people. About 54 percent are abroad. Among Dell customers dissatisfied with the company's use of overseas labor is Ronald Kronk, a Presbyterian minister in Rochester, Pa., who has spent the last four months trying to solve a problem that resulted in his being billed for two computers. The problem, he said, is that the Dell call center is in India. "They're extremely polite, but I call it sponge listening — they just soak it in and say, `I can understand why you're angry,' but nothing happens," Kronk said. He added: "Every time I see a Dell commercial on TV, I just cringe. They make it sound so easy and it's been a nightmare." In afternoon trading on the New York Stock Exchange, Dell was up 67 cents at $35.19.
Link Posted: 11/25/2003 10:48:12 AM EDT
I don't talk to tech support on the phone, I just use email. The last time I had an issue, that didn't work because evidently they can't read either.
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