The topic for today is Aussie jobs going over seas.
While we gripe about those coming on 457 Visa to work in Aussie Businesses, we are losing much larger amount of jobs to overseas companies and not realising it, just giving in without much complain. IT Call centers was I guess the beginning. We’ve all experienced the feeling of annoyance when we ring our Telco companies. Our mood is already at breaking point because the internet is not working or the phone, and add to that to be answered by someone who from the get go you know is not going to fix the problem. He/she has an answering sheet, same solution “after you pull the socket out of wall, press it with a ball point and say “Ohm Shiva” (sorry I am not being a racist here, I am just peeved to the core). Anyway, what have we done about fixing that issue, Well nothing, more and more Aussie companies are establishing their call centres overseas.
Along with that we are losing more supporting industries such as accounts departments to overseas as well. Yes, I have a vested interested in it as I am losing customers. But my annoyance goes further than my own personal gain/loss. If these overseas establishments are doing a good job, I wouldn’t care so much. Not that I wouldn’t care but at least I will have to acknowledge that if a company could perform a task for half the cost but with the same efficiency, yes I will have to bow down and accept it. But, my outburst today comes from having to deal with these companies on behalf of my local clients. Whether it be Philippines or India, it is the same drama. I am not sure who they employ in these places, if they actually have an accounting background or not. Even if they had, whether they are familiar with our practices, laws and overall business culture.
I have had payments made regularly minus the GST amount. When you send them an email explaining this, it will then go through a million chain email from one person to another. You wonder if it is worth the drama to be chasing for $14.97 for three months. How should I write it off as, along with “Bad Debts” as account category, should have another one called “no understand GST”
Today’s outburst comes from an issue that I have been dealing with for a client of mine. This clients’ client was an excellent payer. I never had to pick up the phone chasing payments. Like clock work the payments arrived on time along with a remittance advice. End of last year I saw a new pattern emerging. Suddenly I had to start sending emails and even phone calls chasing for payments or remittance advises. Payments started coming in late and sometimes late and short paid. Then since March nothing. Client slowly revealed that they’ve gone overseas for the final stage of processing the invoices. So, I would be sending the email to my clients office in Adelaide and then he would send it to Melbourne and then it goes to India. Between May to date I think I have been through roughly 20 -25 emails, and god knows how many phone calls. Each email gets more interesting than the previous. I had dates given to me about payments made for the March and April invoices. Again this email would have gone through five people before it comes to me, I would then go back to the original bank statements to see if any payments had come through, that I may have mistakenly allocated to someone else. Nope, so I would start the next chain of emails, saying no such payment has been made to our account on that day, before that day or after that day.
I received an interesting email today. It came straight from India. It started apologising for the delay in payments, they have identified that payments were not made since March. “Hallelujah”, finally I thought. Anyway, I stopped reading there, as I wanted to finish the normal routine stuff first and then to come back to this email. Anyway, if they’ve made the payment, I don’t really care for the rest of the fairy tale. So I went back to finishing the mundane stuff. End of the bank reconciliation to my disappointment I realised that there was no payment from them. So I went back to read the email to see if and when the payment would be made.
Mr Rahul Blah Blah Blah has sent me the email and has cc’d the email to another billion pen pushers and starts off by saying that they give their sincere apologies and after reconciling their accounts have found invoices dated after March have not been paid. “Finally” I thought, we are on the same page. He has given detailed information of the past invoices and when they were paid etc. Advising me that I should reconcile my accounts according to that. I felt like “Asterix” and “Oblix”
Well the email continues on to advise me that after I reconcile my accounts as per THEIR advise to print out a current statement and to send it to him directly and he will make the payment the following Monday. I have sent him a very polite email cc’ing the rest of the Rahul’s, Gupta’s and along with the rest of the Australian entourage. So in short, the saga continues.
But this is a serious issue to think about. More and more jobs are going overseas. Whether it be accounts departments, IT or Manufacturing. I understand that our wages and other wage related expenses are slightly on the upper bracket leaving businesses with a smaller margin of Profit (in theory).
In my opinion I think it is mainly the medium to small businesses are the ones who are most affected by our high award rates and workcover, super and other industrial awards obligations, and receive the least amount of assistance from the Government. There are many obligations (including financial payments) that needs to be met by businesses that venture into employing staff from overseas on the 457 visa. Most locals are not aware of these things and the Governments don’t explain this either when they go for their vote grabbing slogans.
I wonder if there are same or if any requirements for companies that go overseas to subcontract their company functions? When we lose jobs to overseas, aren’t we then losing the PAYG revenue as well.
Talking about IT call centres going overseas, I had an interesting conversation a couple of weeks ago with the Tax departments IT help centre. Guess where that call went to? I am some one who is skeptical about “Cloud” servers so imagine how I feel about our ATO going to India.
Politicians constantly talk about job creation. Before we talk about creating jobs, we should think about not losing the ones we have. Each year University students find it almost impossible to find internships in Australia especially in Engineering and medical fields and some have no option but to go overseas. Some even have to pay for their internships. Same predicament once they graduate. They have to go overseas for the jobs. All this for the CEO to have fatter cheque. I am not suggesting a Communist or a socialist policy here. But there has to be a balance. Total Capitalism will ruin the core social structure. We still need some parts of the societies needs to be owned/met by the Government. Governments shouldn’t be influenced by big businesses nor by the unions. Unions are a necessary organisation to keep businesses accountable, and could be a very important body for negotiation of the two parties. But bullying by either party should not be tolerated/condoned by the Governments.
My blood pressure has come down. Time for a refill cuppa.
Please Note: I have nothing against Indians or Phillipines or whoever else from the rest of the world. But completely against our jobs going to whoever else other than Aussies (who are paying taxes in our country)