Reverse outsourcing…!

Seems like the scourge (to some) that is outsourcing may yet turn into a boon to all – Indian conglomerate TATA has neatly turned the tables through a new trend called “insourcing” as CNNMoney reports! Strange as it sounds (since outsourcing started as a strategy to cut costs and improve business efficiencies), the objective here is to provide “local” service to companies that prefer not to move their call services overseas . Of course, the costs are higher (up to 40% more) but the payoffs seem better image-wise (involvement in the local community & contribution to local jobs). The article carefully notes that in travel, localites are likely to have better knowledge of US geography. Other reasons – people seem to “feel more comfortable” with homegrown accents.

To the foregoing, one might add another reason – conceptual familiarity! Customer service is better ingrained in the American culture than anywhere else in the world – globally, people put up with sloppy service, poor product quality, defective merchandise and other glaring shortcomings because they don’t know to expect better. Thanks to the American experience, most foreigners know there can be better service than the one offered at home! Americans are also harder to please and expect more – qualities that keep customer service centers on their toes.

Hospitality companies were among the slowest to move their call centers away from the US with most still remaining on the mainland – that sluggishness may end up in their being far-sighted!

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Vijay Dandapani

Co-founder and president of a New York based hotel company for 24 years. Grew the firm to five hotels in Manhattan and also developed a greenfield project at MacArthur airport, New York. Speaker at numerous prestigious forums including Economy Hotels World Asia, Lodging Conference, NYU, Columbia University Real Estate Roundtable, Baruch College's Zicklin School and ALIS. President and ceo of New York City Hotel Association since January 2017.