DEVELOPING: Sutherland Global Services Lawsuit

I don’t have much I can reveal at the moment, but letters have gone out to all Sutherland Global Services employees working for the company between July 16, 2001 and July 17, 2004. The information contained in these letters does not seem to square with reason, nor to the facts in the cases pending against them. At issue in the cases is the shoddy, often intentionally abusive wage practices at Sutherland.

Union watchers and UNITEHERE employees will no doubt be familiar with the attempts by said Union to organize the workers at the Henrietta office. This case (or really, series of cases) stems from both the fall out after and the mitigating factors that prompted that organization push. I was there for that whole thing, and it was ugly.

Well, without going into too much detail before I’ve had a chance to check in on a few sources, it looks as though things stand to get uglier.

Did anyone else out there work for Sutherland during those years? Have you gotten a letter? Do you know someone who has? I would be very interested in hearing from you, if so. Drop a comment or contact me directly though the “Contact Me” link in the masthead.

By Tommy Belknap

Owner, developer, editor of DragonFlyEye.Net, Tom Belknap is also a freelance journalist for The 585 lifestyle magazine. He lives in the Rochester area with his wife and son.

25 replies on “DEVELOPING: Sutherland Global Services Lawsuit”

I have a “friend” who worked at Sutherland (I think during those years) but he is such a far right-wing looney that I doubt he would approve of union activities or using the courts to redress grievances like this. But I will ask him if he received a letter.

Yeah, ask him. Let him know that we mean him no harm and will gladly allow him to continue wearing his foil hat, should I want to talk to him.

Oh! And let him know the government is putting poison in our toothpaste. That gets ’em every time.

I was involved in the UNITE union attempt and was actually fired for my union support. I am one of the main plaintiff’s in the class action lawsuit and can’t wait until we have our day in court. Sitherland is finally going to feel what they have been making their employees feel for years.

Hey, totally side issue, but it seems like you have installed a “widget” that underlines certain words and links them to products for sales at I certainly am not questioning your right to do this … it is your blog … however my opinion is that it is jarring to see “Sutherland Global” in the main post underlined and linked to a CD-ROM by Global Health Initiative sold on, and in my earlier comment to see the phrase “I have a friend” linked to some CD sold on Just my opinion, it takes away from the image of this blog as a serious commentary on important issues. I don’t have a problem with advertisements in sidebars, but I do have issues seeing advertisements linked in the actual text of otherwise serious postings.

I worked at sutherland during those years. As well as a lot of employees in our Syracuse office. I have just got wind of this site today. As well a lot of employees have not received this letter. Many a time we have been asked to work through our breaks or lunches to meet goals. Even if we work through breaks and lunches on our own they still take it out of kronos. When we were given a letter of employment it was to sell internet service not dish, cingular and phone packages. But we have to in order to make commission. We have not been compensated for the extra work in an incrase of pay either. Here they are billing the client $28 an hr for every hr that an individual rep is in their seats. I only make $8.25 an hr. Where is this money going?

I spent nearly 3 of the most miserable years of my life working at that hellhole. While I don’t want to see the poor souls currently slaving there lose their jobs, I’d love to see Dillip take one hell of a financial beating on this.

I worked for Sutherland during the very first years it was in business (starting in 1989), when it was known as The Sutherland Group. I was a salaried employee (not hourly), so this lawsuit doesn’t apply to me.

Sutherland started in a small office on or near Mt. Hope, as I recall (we were only in that location for a couple of years, before moving to the Pittsford location). This was when there were something like 25 people working there. Sutherland wasn’t alway a huge company. He doesn’t remember me anymore, but in those days I was on a first-name basis with Dilip. Scott Seeman, the other original founder of Sutherland, was still there (although he left within the first four years because he didn’t agree with Dilip’s management/business practices). Dan Lang was just a lowly supervisor. Joanne Koenig was little more than a clerk/secretary/receptionist in those days.

My years at Sutherland were the worst and most frustrating years of my life. I’ve seen shady business practices over the years, but nothing like at Sutherland. We would start every month with a commission plan, so we would always know what our targets were in order to make commission. You can assume that this plan was structured so that if the TSRs made plan, then the project would likewise be successful that month. But that wasn’t good enough for Dilip, because if the TSRs were making plan, then their commission would cut into his profits. So if, part way through the month, they saw that people were going to make the target numbers, they would adjust the plan up so that nobody (or maybe just the one top TSR, if he was lucky) would make the plan.

People get into sales to make commission. You have no idea how frustrating it was to be two or three weeks into a month, see that you were on schedule to make commission, only to have the plan change and have that commission taken away from you.

I actually felt sorry for Dan Lang. I don’t think changing the plan was his idea; I think Dilip made him do this.

I’ve been waiting for Sutherland to get creamed because of their unethical practices. Maybe now’s the time.

I was a Sutherland employee for 4 years. I have to say that the company is a positive influence in a depressed region (upstate NY). For people to make lawsuits and other negative claims is ridiculous. Look at how many jobs SGS provides to the area and whether or not these jobs could be anywhere before bashing them. I look at Sutherland as a great stepping stone for a young career oriented person like myself. I have since moved on to bigger and better things, thanks to the experience I got from Sutherland.

Hey, Sean, thanks for voicing your opinion. Let me say that, by and large, my experience at Sutherland was also quite positive. There is in fact very little I can say about my own time at Sutherland that was negative. You are correct in saying that a lot of people in Upstate and Rochester, specifically have found gainful employment where there might have been none thanks to Sutherland. I myself am enjoying a very nice living as an IT professional on the back of the experience I gained from working at Suth.

All of that being said, it does not then follow that the company that provides jobs should therefore be forgiven when they do wrong. Sutherland has a very “Wild West” sense of rules and regulations, and always has had. For me, that worked out good because my boss was a good guy who could afford to be nice to his employees. For others, it is not so nice, and where wrong has been done, the people deserve to get compensated.

And even in my good situation, the Kronos system typically screwed me out of money on a weekly basis, not paying for hours accrued there over the course of weeks. This is wrong, Sutherland was found guilty by the federal government, and they therefore need to pay a price.

Good companies are hard to find, but good neighbors are more important.

I have not worked for Sutherland but I have on several occations dealt with their NOC in Channai India. Their NOC is crap. These guys dont know what a routing protocol is nor do they know much about netowrking.
There is probably a core of a one or two individuals over there who know the stuff and they seem to be attempting to train the rest of the NOC clowns in Channai but it does not seem to be working.
These dolt cant speak English, and when they do mumble like a freight train and I can hardly understand who those clowns are saying.
Hopefully Southerland can train some competance into their employees as it is very very frustrating dealing with a bunch of yammering dingbats.

This is about Sutherland Clark here in the Philippines. I got in here thru word of mouth and right now i am in the middle managemnt. It’s true that a lot of business malpractices are happening here – Payroll disputes which lasted for months, team building funds which will be approved selectively – meaning, if you’re a pro-management guy, you’ll get your team building fund at the earliest possible time next is the Ramp Up system (or promotion) – if you don’t belong to a certain “Circle of Friends” like a friend of that Director for Service Delivery guy named Jameson Jimenez, you’ll get passed the promotion line. And last but not the least, Meager salaries of internally promoted people VS. externally hired managemnt people – This is an ongoing saga of internally promoted people since SGS started from Clark. The mere fact that these internally promoted people already knows the process of management (SGS wise) were only getting low salary compared to the externally hired managemnt people which of course have lucrative salaries. HR does not have any detailed explanation to this issue and the only thing that those stupid people will tell you is this, “Because they will contribute additional management skills that we need” – a very big BS and BS to the entire SGS Clark management as well. Notable people with inexperienced people skills are: Sonny Bartido – Senior Program Manager and a lard ass, Sashidhar R. These two were former members from the Service excellence group or whatever. These two guys are users – users in the sense that they will promise you a promotion but give first the data they need then will leave you hanging and special mention for the two Baboons from India – Suresh Sharma and Gerald Louis Dorairaj MC (Classified as Wolves of North India). The system they have implemented caused a great number of casualties (resigned due to dissatisfaction) and now SGS clark like SGS from the United States, is now making its name here in the Philippines by implementing what Mr. Velodi have started. Well of course, since this is a third country, people here still cling on to SGS for a job out of desperation which again Sutherland will take advantage. Lately, SGS started to speed up its process and services. Why? SOme BPOs here started to establish and SGS clark knows that their pitiful employees will slowly but surely will move to one of those BPOs. SGS clark is now desperate in seeking replacements thru remote recruitment. They boast of their revenue here at clark. But most of its employees doesn’t feel it. Who benefit from that revenue? Us middle management? Nahh. Like one of the previous comments, it will only go to Dilip’s pocket and to the pockets of monkeys in india. But I still believe in Karma.

I currently work for sutherland and have had never been denied a break or lunch. I have been asked to wait 15 minutes because someone else is out on their lunch or break and the que is too busy. I acually like working for sutherland. I make somewhat good money and its easy work. I also got the letter and I threw it away. One reason is I didn’t work for them during that time and two I don’t want to sue my employer.

Bertha, that is commendable that you don’t want to sue your employer and jump on the band wagon if you have not had payroll or other issues with SGS. However, I have been a sales agent and a Trainer with this group and can attest to ‘some’ wrongful business practices pertaining to compensating employees. When you lose a $1,000 commission check because they tell you when you can’t be sick, then you’ll know what we are talking about. Good luck with your career at Sutherland. BTW: I still work there temporarily.

Sutherland likes to bring people in and after they are comfortable, begin altering the commission plan to keep more of it for Sutherland and give less and less to the people earning it. This is a gradual process but one that rinses and repeats on all the programs sutherland has slaves toiling away on.

Another favorite trick is to promise a signing bonus and on the day that the recipient is eligible to receive that bonus, lay them off due to “low call volume” and keep the $1,000.00.

I hope the market is not too soft or that I get really lucky as I am just about done here and need either a 2nd job to pay for the one I have at sutherland or devote my 40 hour work week to a more deserving employer. Wish me luck.

Sutherland is not a bad company to work with but the managemnet team really sucks, for implementing plans which spoils up employees payroll.

Sutherland is also known for sexual harassment happening with female employees specially in India where they’re forced to do it inorder to get promoted for next level.

My husband worked for Sutherland in Windsor, Ontario during those times? Does what is mentioned here pertain to the Canadian folks also?
All I know is that when it came time for them to send over Tax information for his income tax return, they had sent it to a completely different city. When I tried to contact them for the paperwork, it took me a month to finally get a call back from the person responsible for payroll. Then I find out I’ve been calling the wrong number, I’ve been calling Texas. Then when I finally got the right number, the girl didn’t even know what the payroll department was….. So I guess if my husband did receive some kind of letter, it probably went to the wrong address as well.

I have once again applied to Sutherland thinking my current job is becoming more ridiculous. This is the third time I have applied. The first time I was offered a sales job but decided against it. The second time I was asked to think about it and come back if I was interested. This time, I’d like an interview where I’d be armed with some tough questions about pay and working conditions in the Windsor location where all they have left is Telus Mobility after losing Dell, HP and ATT.

Wow, i just wanted to say that i feel bad for the ppl that have has bad experiences. i work there and i love it. such a awsome environment. I was in training and my class did not get paid, something wrong with payroll, And for that they bought us all lunch, and someone PERSONALLY drove to Toronto and back to get our checks and we got them in 2 days.

also Call volume is not THAT bad, of course sometimes its a lot, but right now we get 3 or 4 in a 8 hour shift. and we get a hour inbetween. Like come on, we dont sell we install a program that they bought for them..

And i have a friend selling phone contracts. and She has to sell ONE a day, and she usually gets 8 or 9. AND she gets commission. And they have pot lucks, and prizes.

I also know someone that was working the phones during there contract with HP, and they had to sell 3$ worth of stuff A MONTH. HA that was cake.

Everyone is so nice, and an awsome team, i have no clue why ppl freak out. if you dont like the low pay get a education and get a real job them, im just a young student and this is a stepping stone for me.

is there any fucking website or lawsuit for suther land india.. dude u guhys atleast getting paid 8.25$’s a day and u people knw wat she shit salary we get here. we get paid monthly basis and our pay daily basis is a mere 450 Indian rupees = 10.11555 U.S. dollars.
damn fuckin pissed off guys..:-(

Well looks like Sutherland is at it again, in this past weeks Rochester Business Journal there is an article stating there has been another new lawsuit filed against them. The article says:

Former finance dept employees are suing Sutherland for back OT pay as they were improperly classed as salary employees when indeed they were not.

It goes on to say that anybody who worked for Sutherland in the past 6 years and was a slaried employee can possibly join the suit.

It also states that one employee who had asked to be paid the back overtime was fired for this reason.

I wonder how many lawsuits it is going to take before somebody realizes how shady this company really is.

I worked for Sutherland Group, San Diego from 98-2001 and again from 2002 to 2003. I have never gotten a letter for a CAL.

I have about 100 shares and dont know what to do with them

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