For the last few days, Indian media has remained very busy with covering Satyam Computer scandal involving the accounting fraud of Ramalinga Raju. It has really rocked the image of Indian outsourcing industry as Satyam Computer was considered to be one of the most success stories of outsourcing sector. This scandal has again raised some serious questions about outsourcing to
The main concern related to this scandal is the level of corporate governance in
The American and European companies have more reason to fear than just accounting fraud. In 2006, we saw an incident of the arrest of an Indian call centre worker for alleged data theft. No only that, Channel 4 of UK carried out a controversial documentary on data theft in the call centers. This thing created some negative publicity in
More than data theft, there is some serious concern about call center workers becoming affected with HIV Aids. In 2008, there was a report that many call centre workers were suffering from pressure of working whole night at call centers and to get relief from such pressure, they were getting involved in physical relationship and this way, they were running the risk of having HIV Aids. This report came in September 2008 and generated some media attention, but after that there was no follow-up report about it. If in the coming months we can see serious problem about HIV Aids infecting call center and outsourcing workers then it will bring even more negative publicity for the sector.
Two days ago, BCC published a shocking report about an Indian call center male worker sending unwanted love messages to a woman in
One positive thing about the whole problem is that Indian government has so far acted wisely. Yes, some people have tried to say that these things were small issues were isolated incidents and some people in India have also this feeling that often incidents are blown out of proportion and Indian outsourcing field gets too much undue negative publicity in the western media. However, one thing that we have to remember is that accepting the problem is necessary because the problem exists. Until now, the western companies were only concerned about data theft and the protection of their data. Now, they have something more to be worried about and it is the level of corporate governance in
(This entry was first published in January 2009. Because of a technical problem, the entry had to be deleted and I am reposting again now.)