Call Centers Return to US Homes

Remember those call center jobs that corporate America outsourced to the Philippines and India a few years ago? Well, they're baaaack!

For years, Americans have had their phone calls about credit card bills and broken cell phones handled by people in the Philippines or India. But American firms are starting to bring call centers back to the U.S. — and this time around, they are hiring more people to work in their own homes.

Ten years ago, it made a lot of sense to outsource these jobs overseas. But that's changing. Increasingly, companies that want to outsource their customer service jobs are happy with these domestic arrangements.

High inflation and double-digit annual raises in some sectors are pushing up the cost of labor in India. At the same time wages in the U.S. are falling and companies are rethinking the trade-offs associated with outsourcing.

Carolyn Beeler of NPR's All Thing considered calls this one in:

Previously on Neatorama: Chinese Companies are Finding US to be a Bargain!

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Thank God. Maybe we'll get our good American customer service back. It might be nice to talk with someone who actually knows what they're talking about again. Or speaks English.
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My friend runs a small business with growing needs for tech support, and was recently offered outsourced support for ~$17.50 an hour from, training would be unpaid, and they'd work at hours that it's sometimes hard to get Americans to work at, but given that she's in Memphis and can get people to work third shift for less than $10.00/hr, she wisely passed.

I know that it gets cheaper per employee if you have a very large call center, but really? I'd probably do that unappreciated and often highly unpleasant work for far less than it would take most companies to get overseas employees.
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