Prahlad Rao | September 22, 2015
BT is to stop using Indian call centres. This could be just any other news item. But the news says more about India’s education system than closure one business unit.
BT is closing its call centre because its customers have been complaining of poor customer service with the call centre staff unable to sort out basic problems. The BT customers have made it clear they would rather talk to a UK-based adviser when dealing with queries or faults.
Since 2003 the telecoms giant which has more than 10 million customers in the UK has used call centres in Bengalure and Delhi to supplement its UK operations.
Then why suddenly the telecom giant is going away from India? In digital age a company cannot afford to displease its customers. An angry customer has a choice to opt for another service provider or can spread their bitter experience over the internet. Both are damaging for the company.
A company has to employ qualified staff at every level of operations. But if any of you had a misfortune of talking to your telecom service provider, the discomfort of BT customer could be understood. The call centre employee can hardly be trusted to first understand the query or the problem before even resolving the issue. They do not have language skill or patience to learn SOPs (standard operating procedure) of the subject they are handling.
If Indian call centre staff cannot solve basic problem of BT customer, the company has every reason to leave the shores of India.
The sunrise industry of IT services or the outsourcing industry suffers from under qualified and poorly trained staff. They are also paid very badly as the recent survey says.
Poor pay, poor education and lack of commitment are going affect Indian IT services industry and rightly so Infosys founder NR Narayana Murthy has been lamenting on the unemployable graduates coming out of our educational institutions.
Before many BT type of companies leave, the policy makers need to work on something to arrest this.
The skill development initiative of the Modi government is one solution that is available for immediate remedy. Use it properly.
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