Feint praise

Awards ceremonies are usually there to recognise excellence and achievement. However, it seems some, inadvertently, end up just rewarding imagination – irrespective of whether that imagination has delivered concrete results.

This was evident at the National Outsourcing Association awards dinner in October. The vast majority of awards were greeted with well-deserved back-slapping and hearty congratulations for the deserving winners.

But one of the award recipients – who, to spare their blushes, shall remain nameless – had a guilty secret: As the client, a major international bank, was later to reveal, the project in question was not as straight-forward as all the back-patting would suggest. In fact, fundamental parts of the contract had not been delivered, and the bank was actually on “the verge of suing” over the provider’s failure to deliver the goods.

The client’s complaint that its provider lacked a fundamental grasp of good customer service only confirmed further that this was not, in fact, an outsourcing match made in heaven.

To add insult to injury, the bank’s provider, still a private company, wants the client in question to back its IPO when the company floats next year. But as the client remarked philosophically: “Since when did a lawsuit get in the way of making revenues?”

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Ben Rossi

Ben was Vitesse Media's editorial director, leading content creation and editorial strategy across all Vitesse products, including its market-leading B2B and consumer magazines, websites, research and...

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