Spin Bunny rightly points out that PR teams are hard enough to manage without having the execs based in India! I would say that likening PR agencies to call centres is absurd - apart from a few agencies I'm sure Spin Bunny wouldn't hesitate to mention. Outsourced call centres are my pet hate right now.
I had a shit experience with an outsourced call centre this Monday, when trying to track down the missing mobile phone which I ordered a month ago from O2. When I finally got through to the right department (most of the numbers tell you to call somewhere else, cut you off, or put you through to an agent who isn't equipped to deal with your enquiry) they told me it was DHL's problem. So I called DHL, who told me that because I wasn't in when they came round, they sent the phone back to O2 (and that someone called Caluuo signed for it). That's clever. Well done on not bothering to leave a card when you called round, DHL.
This is where I got angry. I called O2 back to tell them, and got through to their Manchester call centre, I was told. They said to me that they sent me the phone to me and that I had signed for it. I told them I hadn't, but they told me that, actually, I did!
They didn't believe me when I said that DHL returned it to them and assured me it was signed for by an O2 employee at O2's depot. The woman in O2 that I was speaking to was completely unwilling to believe my 'story' and I would have to take out insurance and claim for a lost phone, even through they never sent it to me. And - get this - she wouldn't put me through to someone who COULD help me. Why? Because she said she was in an outsourced contact centre and terefore couldn't transfer me. Instead, she put me on hold while she sucked air through her teeth or something. While I was on hold I called the same number again from my old mobile and got through to a different call centre who told me they would call DHL, find out what had happened to my phone, and resolve the issue for me. I was on hold for two minutes while they sorted it out. They accepted responsibility and sent me a new phone which arrived yesterday. How come Manchester couldn't do that? Because they were outsourced.