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(Guardian)   Outsourced Indian call centers experience 70 percent turnover due to abusive customers   ( observer.guardian.co.uk) divider line
    More: Spiffy  
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20383 clicks; posted to Main » on 30 May 2005 at 7:59 PM (12 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



313 Comments     (+0 »)
 


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2005-05-30 03:53:44 PM  
I don't get abusive but I do politely ask to be transfered to someone in the US.
 
2005-05-30 03:59:10 PM  
I see all of this whining (err...whinging, it's a report from the UK) about the abuse that these call center reps get. I suppose it has absolutely nothing to do with the fact that the majority of them are absolutely clueless and are just reading some script.

Not that American call centers are any better, but getting shiatty support is one thing. Shiatty support from a person you can't understand is just crazy.
 
2005-05-30 04:00:25 PM  
I don't care if they're in India or Arkansas. What I have a problem with is calling tech support and getting someone who is unfamiliar with the product and is obviously reading off a script.
 
2005-05-30 04:01:58 PM  
Here's how we fix the karmic balance...

US gets it's tech support from India and India get's tech support from the US.

Imagine some nice Indian fellow talking to a helpfull support person from Alabama, Texas, or Maine. Wouldn't that be a beautiful thing?
 
2005-05-30 04:10:35 PM  
from article:
websites have sprung up in the US giving phone numbers of companies which use call centres in India, and listing Hindi swear words to be used to abuse staff. 'When you move jobs away from a country, there's going to be a lot of pent-up frustration which gets let out on Indian workers,' he said.

That's teh funny.
 
2005-05-30 04:14:00 PM  
Good. It's a shame it isn't 100%.
 
2005-05-30 04:19:37 PM  
Global Swearing Archive's Hindi section.


I think I like "Bhen Chod" the bestest.


[don't harass the poor call center critters though]
 
2005-05-30 04:20:55 PM  
I never talk to them..ever. I won't do it. Any company that outsources it's shiat to foriegn lands..I don't do business with.
 
2005-05-30 04:23:05 PM  
2005-05-30 04:01:58 PM peck [TotalFark]

Here's how we fix the karmic balance...

US gets it's tech support from India and India get's tech support from the US.

Imagine some nice Indian fellow talking to a helpfull support person from Alabama, Texas, or Maine. Wouldn't that be a beautiful thing?


Indeed a beautiful thing. I one better...big oil companies paying farmers to grow hibrid, oil enriched corn. For obvious reasons.
 
DBD
2005-05-30 05:15:39 PM  
I have but one thing to say about all of this. Mein teri maa ko teri bhen ki choot mein chodoonga aur tera baap laltern lekar aayega. Yurp.
 
2005-05-30 05:26:55 PM  
Been there done that. I've been on the receiving end of this abuse. Some people are just rude and obnoxious when they get on the phone, and they expect you to sit there and take it. And, unfortunately, I did for several months, until I could get out of that job.
 
2005-05-30 05:35:51 PM  
Hmm, 70% turnover in a call center? Why that sounds like the exact same rate US call centers see. I am shocked that call centers worldwide all face the same problems!
 
2005-05-30 05:40:57 PM  
I rarely call customer service, but when I do I expect the person I am calling to have knowledge of the product/service and to be intelligible.

Just end the call or asked to be transferred.There is no need to be rude.
 
2005-05-30 06:40:39 PM  
I would say that US call centers have about 70% turnover too.

/used to work in a customer service call center for [large ISP]
 
2005-05-30 06:55:15 PM  
I had to call Dell customer service twice this spring. Obvious it was in India, I found the people who helped me very polite and knowledgable.

Don't see what all the fuss is about, maybe it's an American thing.
 
2005-05-30 07:38:04 PM  
Teri ma ki bund mein chaarpai bichhake teri bhen ko chodun.
Teri maa ki chut mein chatri leke hgus jaunga aur khol dunga!

For some reason, I imagine Worf saying this.
 
2005-05-30 08:00:43 PM  
I've never been abusive to someone at one of those call centers, but I don't buy products from Compaq or HP because of it. I had a 21" Compaq monitor go out, and I had to make 4 separate calls just to get an authorization for warranty repair. Each time I got a different East Indian guy (conveniently name "Bob" or "Eric" or whatever) I could barely understand and who obviously couldn't understand me (Every conversation went "I have a 21" Compaq monitor..." "What is model number of computer sir?" "It's not a computer, but I have the model and serial number of the monitor" "I need model number of computer before I help you sir" ). Finally I was able to talk to a supervisor (I had to demand one) and he actually understood that there were Compaq monitors that weren't purchased with Compaq computers.

I don't think it's racist to demand someone you can actually communicate with.
 
2005-05-30 08:07:47 PM  
The writing is on the wall.

I welcome my Chinese/Indian overlords. I ask that you consider my American Call Center to serve the needs of your industrialized nation. We are very sensitive to your needs and will only employ polite Americans. Each call will be monitored to ensure no ugly Americans insult your nations. Our employees are all students and lovers of the Asian cultures and languages.

I pay our employees minimum wage and I am sure we can find an economical and profit making solution for your firms.

Namaste.
 
2005-05-30 08:08:40 PM  
lol@people sayin they want someone with a maths degree and vast knowledge answering the phone with tech support. (im exaggerating to prove my point im sure trolls will have a field day with that)
Pay peanuts you get monkeys.
 
2005-05-30 08:08:50 PM  
Vanhfan
Don't see what all the fuss is about, maybe it's an American thing.

Perhaps, but after reading the fine article in the British newspaper reporting it,

'I found it difficult to work for British clients,' Pooja Chopra said. 'They wouldn't call you names, but you could hear the hostility in their voices. The US customers were generally much more easy-going.'
 
2005-05-30 08:10:05 PM  
Great use of [image from img246.echo.cx too old to be available]!

I'll never buy another Dell Computer due to this stuff. Err, due to poor customer service from Dell, not due to the spiffy tag.
 
2005-05-30 08:11:50 PM  
Begging for the obvious tag.
 
2005-05-30 08:12:10 PM  
People in callcenters know they're going to get yelled at in the U.S. It's a simple thing to do, take abuse verbally. It happened to me before, and I just kind of look of, not taking it personally. I understand they're angry and lots of times they have a good reason to be. I believe some people would suspend someones services if they've been that abusive.
 
2005-05-30 08:12:45 PM  
I'll bet Frank Rizzo is responsible for much of that turnover.
 
2005-05-30 08:13:45 PM  
I doubt I'll purchase another problem from that Spiffy tag either, Sique.
 
2005-05-30 08:13:51 PM  
I work in a JPMorgan Chase call center... 68% turnover.
 
2005-05-30 08:14:07 PM  
All I want to know is how to make traditional Indian recipes! tell me how to say that and I will call Dell repeatedly.
 
2005-05-30 08:15:10 PM  
I prefer talking to someone in India vs. yet another "mad black woman".

Calling the US Mint once because I didn't get my order, recommended that I file a complaint with the Bureau of Public Affairs. Un-frickin-believable.

I'll take Sanjib over Quantesia six days a week and twice on Sunday.
 
2005-05-30 08:15:54 PM  
SPIFFY?

WHO exactly is proud of the fact that Americans are total a$$holes?

Personally in my dealings with customer service, overseas reps have been far more polite and MUCH easier to work with than domestic reps. Maybe it has something to do with the fact that Americans are grossly undereducated (our own president can't even pronounce NUCLEAR correctly) or that overseas reps have a far better mastery of the English language.

Americans need to wake the F*** up and realize that we live in a GLOBAL economy and that Americans are now competing against people from all over the globe. Doing something half-assed just isn't enough anymore when there are people working for FAR less money in other countries and who are willing to make a MUCH greater effort than our yankee brethren.

OR maybe we should just bring all of the customer service stuff back on shore, and the costs should get passed on to the customers here. If you can complain about overseas customer service, you can also handle paying an extra 10-50% more for the privilege of having those goods/services hosted in the U.S.

Get a clue.
 
2005-05-30 08:17:18 PM  
Dude_:

websites have sprung up in the US giving phone numbers of companies which use call centres in India, and listing Hindi swear words to be used to abuse staff. 'When you move jobs away from a country, there's going to be a lot of pent-up frustration which gets let out on Indian workers,' he said.

That's teh funny.



No, that's horrible. It's like the abuse American tourists take abroad because they happen to meet people who do not like their government's policy.

Oh, wait, you're right. It IS funny!
 
2005-05-30 08:18:04 PM  
Not an experience with a call centre per se, but here's a hint of what customers have to put up with:

clicketty clicky
 
2005-05-30 08:18:12 PM  
dj_bigbird:

I suppose it has absolutely nothing to do with the fact that the majority of them are absolutely clueless and are just reading some script.


Thet's their job. biatch to the company, not the poor third world SOB they hired.
 
2005-05-30 08:20:17 PM  
Uh. When do I get to speak to someone that speaks english?
 
2005-05-30 08:20:40 PM  
Americans are so rude! Dammit, Yanks, quit calling the Indians Pakis! They hate that, because...um, wait...why would Americans call Indians Pakis?
 
2005-05-30 08:21:24 PM  
it's humorous when i get a call from a credit card company etc. and there is some *CLEARLY* indian gentleman on the other end...

"hello, my name is Brian Smith..."

your name isn't brian smith, it's probably Abhay or Apu...
at least these places could dispense with the charade, that would probably make me less hostile.
 
2005-05-30 08:21:45 PM  
Snarfangel
I've never been abusive to someone at one of those call centers, but I don't buy products from Compaq or HP because of it.

I think a more pressing reason not to buy from Compaq is that they make crappy computers.
 
2005-05-30 08:22:12 PM  
It's math, people.

2 billion people, more than willing to work for pennies a day, while American minimum wage keeps going up ($7.15/hr in WA).

Couple that with consumer demand for cheaper products, and outsourcing is inevitable.
 
2005-05-30 08:22:28 PM  
I dont know why this got a spiffy...and people wonder why the rest of the world hates Americans..
 
2005-05-30 08:22:44 PM  
I would agree with YouthCultureSucks - this article should have the [image from img.fark.net too old to be available] tag.

And for the WHO exactly is proud of the fact that Americans are total a$$holes? remark, looks like the Brits are more harsh the us American a$$holes.

'I found it difficult to work for British clients,' Pooja Chopra said. 'They wouldn't call you names, but you could hear the hostility in their voices. The US customers were generally much more easy-going.'
 
2005-05-30 08:22:45 PM  
milo_rules
Americans need to wake the F*** up and realize that we live in a GLOBAL economy and that Americans are now competing against people from all over the globe. Doing something half-assed just isn't enough anymore when there are people working for FAR less money in other countries and who are willing to make a MUCH greater effort than our yankee brethren.

They also need to wake up and realize that A) not every article linked on Fark is from a U.S. source, and B) sometimes these articles do not *just* refer to the U.S. -- in this case it also refers to the U.K., both explicitly and by example.

/second time I've pointed this out, I wonder if it'll need a third time.
 
2005-05-30 08:22:51 PM  
milo_rules:

OR maybe we should just bring all of the customer service stuff back on shore, and the costs should get passed on to the customers here. If you can complain about overseas customer service, you can also handle paying an extra 10-50% more for the privilege of having those goods/services hosted in the U.S.


Hey, that sounds like a good idea. You can hit "2" to transfer to a US call center, and get billed for that.

I do agree that the couple of times I called customer service and got an obviously Subcontinent accent, the other person was efficient, polite, and very patient and thorough.

I must say that since I am interacting a lot with Indians at work (in a scientific research institute), I guess I am rather habituated to the accent.
 
2005-05-30 08:22:55 PM  
milo_rules

to repeat

'I found it difficult to work for British clients,' Pooja Chopra said. 'They wouldn't call you names, but you could hear the hostility in their voices. The US customers were generally much more easy-going.'

/teehee
 
2005-05-30 08:23:16 PM  
Wheres the link to the list of companys that Outsource their tech help? I kno Dell, Linksys and America Online do?
 
2005-05-30 08:23:20 PM  
I used to work at decision one(twice), the latter time for an ISP. There was a very high turnover rate of employees. It was in the good 'ol USA.

Anyone will get burnt out from tech support after 9 months. Time to move on.
 
2005-05-30 08:23:28 PM  
I have worked call center jobs and it is not easy. And I do not abuse the people on the other end of the line... unless of course they A) don't listen to me tell them what the problem is, or B) don't know what the fark they are doing.

Now that I think about it I guess I do abuse a lot of Indian call center reps.

And I guess when I get mad I get really mean... I have the dubious honor of having a warning attached to my Comcast account to escalate to a manager immediately when ever I call in... I even discovered that one of my calls to them is used for training purposes on what not to do with an irate customer.
 
2005-05-30 08:23:43 PM  
yup, i work at earthlink as senior customer service supervisor, our outsourced tech and customer support turn over is about 90%, due to cheap quick training and the language barrier is the most cited reason for leaving
 
2005-05-30 08:23:44 PM  
Snarfangel: /second time I've pointed this out, I wonder if it'll need a third time.

America blah blah blah blah hate speech blah blah blah

Go for number three! :)
 
2005-05-30 08:25:06 PM  
[image from max.blog.az too old to be available]

/Unavailable for comment
 
2005-05-30 08:25:45 PM  
calling indians Pakis. Most Americans wouldn't know the insult involved there. But it being a British paper, who should know full and well the insult involved, maybe we could redirect your call. Please wait for the finger, I mean, beep....
 
2005-05-30 08:26:18 PM  
I just talk in a southern accent, and they get confused.
 
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