See? You CAN offshore the help desk after all

At this very large company, support teams are broken down pretty conventionally, into tier 1 -- the help desk -- and tiers 2 and 3 for more advanced support. Or at least they were, reports a pilot fish who used to work there.

"In 2004, they offshored the tier 1 people," fish says. "They hired one poor -- meaning very underpaid -- soul for Unix and one for Microsoft systems to run around and do things like watch people fail to log in when they couldn't be helped over the phone from India. It was a disaster.

"Management swore they would never do the same to tier 2 and 3, but I didn't trust them. In 2006, I got a chance at an early retirement and grabbed it.

"Sure enough, about two months after my retirement, they laid off the entire IT department including all workers and management -- everyone, including the CIO.

"They hired a new CIO and put him in charge of outsourcing tier 2 and 3 to two American companies with no transition plan in place. Biggest disaster you've ever seen or imagined.

"I've run into some of my users since then and they've apologized for everything they ever said about our IT department and said they dearly wished us back."

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