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Monday, May 23, 2011

Is this a taste of the future? Outsourcing goes full circle as Indian firms look to the U.S. for cheap labour - 23rd May 2011m

It's a frustration experienced by most people when they've made phone calls to large companies.

An unfamiliar voice answers the phone in a call centre hundreds of miles away where cheap labour is commonplace.

But in a reversal of fortunes it now appears that large Indian companies are actually now themselves outsourcing - to U.S. shores.

Large corporations that have boomed in India amid the country's nimble economy have been drawn to the U.S. where unemployment has soared.

Struggling residents desperate for work are paid between $12 and $14 a hour to be stationed in tiny cubicles for long shifts of telesales work.

Once the employees are established, many are offered the chance to be flown to India themselves - the same tactic Western countries have done in India.

Experts said that the phenomenon, which could become more widespread in the coming years, is partly due to Indian workers demanding higher wages and higher living standards.

'The U.S. became the fastest-growing location for us last year. We expect that to continue this year,' Genpact chief executive V.N. 'Tiger' Tyagarajan said.

Joseph Vafi, an analyst at Jefferies & Co. in San Francisco told the Washington Post: 'What you have going on in India are salary hikes. As these companies get larger and larger, it just makes sense for them to do some hiring in the States.' Read More