Thursday, May 8, 2008

The Problem with Outsourcing Overseas is?

The thing about employing a foreign country to do some of your company’s work is that like in any other foreign relations, something gets lost in translation. Well that’s unless your outsourcing partner is very good, I can name some knowledge process outsourcing companies that actually deliver good results but I’ll save that for another post. We’re here to tackle one major problem with outsourcing overseas.

I’m sure this isn’t the first time you’ve heard of communication barriers. In a normal business venture, communication between employer and employee is of utmost importance. Maintaining a harmonious relationship in the company is important too. But when it comes to offshore outsourcing, communication barriers and cultural differences take a much bigger awkward spot. Settling differences is not as easy as talking over matters with a colleague over coffee. Usually, at the beginning of the partnership, it should be clear already what the terms are and how the communication lines would remain constantly open.

English fluency can be an issue since not all overseas outsourcing vendors are native speakers of English. As I’ve said, something might get lost in translation and this is usually the root of most problems. Time zone difference is also another potential problem with offshore outsourcing. Communication can be difficult but if outsourcing vendors are willing to take that extra mile by adjusting their own body clocks then that would help a great deal. Also, time zone difference can prove to be beneficial; we can see it like this, your company works in the morning, and while you sleep, offshore outsourcing vendors are working in your behalf so that makes you company efficient almost 24/7.

Your company and your offshore outsourcing partner should have a clear common goal. Communication can come in the form of online conferencing and consulting and video conference, this can usually be done at a minimum cost. You would want to be updated weekly and your offshore program developers or IT specialists can clarify inquiries. All this is done to ensure that both groups share a common goal and understand each other’s issues.

Anti-offshore outsourcing groups could probably come up with a dozen more problems about outsourcing overseas but I’m going to tackle this one for now. Every good thing starts with good communication. Every problem can be solved through communication just as any goal can be realized if communication lines are always open.


Gerard Szatvanyi said...

That's a very interesting topic. Actually, according to recent studies from major Big 4 auditor, 69% of all outsourcing deals fail, completely or partially. The main reason for this is lack of cultural compatibility between the vendor and the client and poor relationship management. Find more on this issue by reading this article here

Jay said...

This is good suggestion for outsourcing dealers In a normal business venture, communication between employer and employee is of utmost importance.
IT outsourcing services