By Kirk Laughlin, Editorial Director
Loyal followers of Nearshore Americas will recall the outrage we felt when Bogota was named the “world’s riskiest” place to outsource by Brown and Wilson last year. This “finding” goes down as one of the most reckless and erroneous pieces of “research” in the last several years in the global services industry. For one thing, you know something is seriously wrong when the researchers – in this case Mr. Brown and Mr. Wilson who are the bosses at the Black Book – are nowhere to be found when they are asked to explain how they actually came about drawing this conclusion.
At Nearshore Americas, we didn’t want to forget what we consider something that actually damages all of Latin American outsourcing. Since the release of that report, DataMonitor made the highly questionable decision to purchase the “Black Book” brand. Bad decision? Of course. DataMonitor operates a global research group that applies sound methodology and relies on properly trained analysts. Association with the Black Book franchise tarnishes DataMonitor. (For those analyst-group watchers, this is far different from Gartner acquiring a Meta or Burton Group.)
The point to all this is that when Sitel gained recognition today as the “number one” global contact center provider for the second year in row, as determined by the Black Book on Outsourcing, I would look at it with a high degree of skepticism. Instead of a vote of confidence, it may even suggest a pay-for-play accolade. Sitel may well deserve this honor, but as we all learned in journalism school, you have to consider the source.
More than a few marketing and communications executives from Nearshore providers have asked me about whether it’s worth working with “Black Book” folks to gain recognition. My simple advise is: Stay away.
Boycott the Black Book, at least until the current leaders of the brand revoke the smear that paraded as research last year.