Sunday, December 21, 2003

Dell's India Help Desk

Sharon has a laptop for her legal practice that started having problems about a week ago. I tried a couple of different strategies to fix the problems myself, but finally ended up calling Dell Support Sunday morning.

Dell has outsourced their customer help desk to India. If you have not spent two and a half hours on the phone talking to someone in India trying to debug a computer problem, you have not really lived. There were two issues. First, English is not English. The difference in idioms and the pronunciation of words and letters is a much more of a problem than you would expect. Second, the telephone connection was only good at best. It was not a very clear connection which adds to language issues. After spending over an hour and fifteen minutes with one technician, I got dropped. I had to call back in and get connected with another technician in India. Although their system provides some details about my first call, I had to spend some time retracing the same steps. These factors were a very large distraction. I have spent my working career on all sides of these types of transactions. I am not sure how anyone without that kind of perspective could keep from going berserk during the process. At the end of the two and a half hours of calls, they actually had me typing machine language code into debug to reformat the boot sector of the hard disk. Realizing what they were trying to do, I was scared to death that I was going to misunderstand one of the letters or numbers that they were reading off to me. After we did this, they had me start the windows XP installation process from scratch.

Sunday everning, I took Drew and Morgan to the Nutcracker. Due to some bad scheduling, we needed up with Nutcracker tickets for both Saturday and Sunday night. Sharon, Jack and I went on Saturday night, while Drew, Morgan and I went Sunday night.

Sharon took Jack to a Christmas party put on by one of the kids in his class. It was all kindergarten boys. They made ornaments, sang a couple of songs and had an appearance from Santa.

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