Northeast Utilities Said to Plan IT Outsourcing

Employees at Northeast Utilities say the Connecticut utility is planning to streamline its information technology department and outsource hundreds of positions, according to the Hartford Courant. While the company wouldn’t confirm whether outsourcing plans are on the table, workers claim that NU could eliminate most of its about 400 IT jobs in New England, including 281 in Connecticut.

Northeast Utilities LogoIt’s still not clear how much outsourced work would be sent overseas or to domestic locations. Four employees, speaking with the Courant on the condition of anonymity, said they were told in company meetings that two Indian IT companies were already selected to take over the department’s functions. They also said some of the staff to be let go might be hired by an outside vendor.

Responding to questions about possible outsourcing, NU Spokeswoman Caroline Pretyman told the Courant “We have not signed any contracts with any outside firms and are still evaluating next steps.” The company is trying to realize anticipated cost savings from its merger with Massachusetts-based NStar, a deal that closed in April 2012. “Like other companies, as we work to deliver a high level of service to our customers at the least cost, we are evaluating opportunities to streamline and improve IT functions,” Pretyman said.

An agreement with state officials requires that job cuts related to the merger be made proportionally between Massachusetts and Connecticut. In 2012, NU faced criticism from Connecticut officials for not reporting job reductions related to the deal. Connecticut’s Attorney General and Consumer Counsel are looking for more answers after receiving close to a dozen complaints about the possible outsourcing plan.

Comments

  1. It’s a sin what is happening under the roof of Northeast Utilities in the name of saving money. Employees were told the meger between Nstar and Norteast Utilities would be a company that benefited the employees and its customers. The only people benefitting are the fat cats up the food chain. Jobs have already been outsourced to Texas. Customers payments now go to Texas. How does that benefit the customer? Their payments are late, they receive late payment charges, and in many cases their account goes into collections. Customers are now offered a new service to help simplify their move. Allconnect is that company. Are they in Connecticut? No– they are located downsouth. Now jobs are going to India? If they want to save money–decrease the salary of higher management who spend their time golfing. They have a Manager who isn’t even a state resident. Who stays at the local WIndsor hotel, driving his car registered to the state of Georgia. I can’t imagine his Loyalty is to the employees or residents of the state of CT. NU’s push for constant safety is voided every time this arrogant manager drives into the employee parking lot. It’s been said that he almost ran down an employee walking into work. They want to take away employee benefits, vacation time that could be lost, sick time benefits lost. Employees are truly benefitting. Customers are truly benefiting. Employees are truly benefiting. They’re sure to remind us that we have a job. It’s time the $22 hour employees are celebrated for their desire to do an honest job while serving John Q. Public. To not have to worry about exceeding their allowed bathroom time. I’d like to see NU execs be told not to go to the bathroom to often or it will effect there stats. It’s time corporate America and polital America be held to a higher standards. Connecticut has suffered from corporate greed and the sad state of our political arena. We’re being destroyed with unemployment, people beating the system, people unable to fill their gas tanks because of greed. Connecticut wants to work too. We want to take a lousy vacation one week a year, feed our families, and live in safety. No longer are the days of accepting responsibility for our actions. Long gone are the days of pride in what we do and what we create. It’s all about becoming corporate pigs and political tragedy. Do people need to makes millions in salaries off the broken backs of hard working people. I think not. It’s the responsibility of corporate America to do theirs job right. Make our business a company that people respect and support. A place where people want to work. Knowing they’ll be treated with respect, loyalty, and the means to survive. Not to have to consider leaving the state to survive. And to the politicians who only care about deceiving the population with their lies and the destruction they leave in their path. The governor benefits with state workers doing jobs for him. I wish the state would fix my driveway with a state vehicle. To help its citizens who want to lead a clean honest life. Maybe NU needs to evaluate the salaries and bonuses of its big wigs. Maybe our jobs will remain here for our unemployed citizens to have. Keep our people working. I know I have no desire to speak with someone in another country who doesn’t give a fig newton about the state of Connecticut. NU step up and earn your salaries. Take care of your employees and your responsibility to the state of Connecticut.

  2. BY thomas loy says:

    And companies WONDER why they cannot hire IT people when they ship jobs overseas! I personally won’t work for a company that mentions “overseas” in a job ad.

  3. BY Martin Miller says:

    Northeast Utilities is way late to the table about using offshore outsourcing via India. I’ve vendor managed offshore India IT companies. Their lower hourly costs are a misnomer.

    Many Fortune 1000′s have learned that cost-savings are elusive with companies like Wipro, HCL, and Infosys that may bill around $65/hour. Often, a large ‘change request’ follows any modifications to project requirements. This happened at Nissan North America a few years ago to the tune of $3M. Nissan showed that company the door…

    Also, the quality of the work is not up to par or takes much longer to complete If a company has no real project deadlines or finish dates, perhaps they can afford to wait through schedule slippage as an Indian offshore company goes through their iterations to get it right.

    India cannot do SCRUM methodology, as fast-track way of doing ‘sprints’ though various deliverables. SCRUM relies on short form documentation rather than long functional specs or product requirements docs. Documentation for India needs to be detailed and long form, which raises project costs. Time zone issues with India-based resources are also challenging.

    In general, offshore outsourcing to India is questionable in terms of taking good paying jobs from Americans. So much controversy exists over immigration policy toward Mexico. But non-citizen Mexicans living here are not taking high paying jobs from American IT knowledge workers. H1B’s from India are taking those jobs… Finally, don’t buy into American executive’s claims that we lack the IT talent. It’s so not true.

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