Dell shifts some support calls to US after complaints

Dell has brought some technical support work back to the US after corporate customers complained about the quality of service they were receiving from workers in other countries, according to Dell spokesman.

The Round Rock, Texas, company has moved aggressively to shift technical support to centres in countries such as India, but complaints about the quality of technical support have caused the company to move support for its Optiplex desktops and Latitude notebooks back to US call centres in Texas, Idaho and Tennessee, among others, Dell spokesperson, Jon Weisblatt, said.

"Corporate customers were telling us they didn't like the level of support they were getting, and in the normal course of business, we made some adjustments," Weisblatt said.

Dozens of US companies have set up technical support and software development centres in India, China and other countries where they can pay workers far less than a typical US worker would command for the same position. The companies claim this approach has allowed them to dramatically cut costs, but some US workers and politicians fear companies will permanently move all types of back-office jobs outside of the US, forcing workers to seek new types of employment.

Dell's move appears to be one of the first times the company has moved jobs back to the US after customer complaints.

Weisblatt was unable to cite a previous example of support calls moving from other countries to the US, and did not provide a time frame in which Optiplex or Latitude support calls from US corporate customers would be completely handled by US call centres.

Support calls for other products as well as consumer support would still be handled by one of Dell's 20 global call centres, based on capacity, he said.

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Tom Krazit

IDG News Service
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