Tag Archives: IT Outsourcing

Which countries are the best to outsource particular tasks to?

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When you boil it down, is it about the individual company, its boss or its workers? Or is it more about the available labor pool in that particular country, and its cultural tendencies? The answer is that it is a little of both. Each country has different attributes. Thank god the world has so many countries, because to get anything done you need them. Can you imagine Danish pastries made by Americans? Or French Croissants made by Germans? What about Chinese food made by Koreans? It just doesn’t taste the same.

IT Outsourcing / Software Development Outsourcing
There are several countries that are good for this type of work. Keep in mind that the market can change abruptly if a single large company like Google decides to hire or fire in mass! Americans are the smartest at programming. We invented the computer and the internet in my state of residence here in California. But, due to market conditions, people are far too busy to be able to get anything done in a reasonable timeframe. Belarus, Ukraine, Romania and India are my best picks for getting outsourced software work done. These countries need more hours to do the same work that an American could do in fewer hours. But, at least they HAVE those hours. The

Europeans are reputed to be more careful about following directions than Indians, but there are companies (if you search hard enough) who are very nitpicky as well. If you plan on visiting these companies, the weather is nicer in India, especially during the winter. Shop around and test these guys out.

Call Center Outsourcing
India has a reputation of being big in this business. But, the sad reality is that they lack the social graces to maintain a client base. The Philippines, Kenya, South Africa, Costa Rica, Jamaica, and other Central American destinations are now popular picks for outsourced call center work. They have better accents, more graceful social skills, and the prices are reasonable as well. Indians might have an edge at technical support since they are stronger at IT tasks as a culture in India. India might be a good destination for Telemarketing since they are more aggressive than Filipinos. Once again, shop around and compare. Pick your agents by hand as well.

Data Entry Outsourcing
India leads the pack in this type of work, but I have not found so many companies that seem meticulous enough to do data entry outsourcing. I have no recommendations here other than to be careful.

Medical Transcription & Billing
It might be a better idea to find a US based provider that has staff members throughout the world. This practice is already commonplace. So, you can get the price benefits of outsourcing — without outsourcing, at least not outsourcing yourself! There are a few good medical transcription companies in India an the Philippines who I spoke to who gave a good impression so far in these industries.

Web Design
India once again has many Web Design companies with charismatic bosses who communicate well. Prices are low as well. But, don’t overlook Argentina. Please understand that the Argentinians culturally are great artists, and their web designers are no exception. My staff learned that they lack a business mentality in South America. The work is good, but quotas, schedules, deadlines, websites that actually have phone numbers, and other “being businesslike” characteristics are lacking down there! No country has it all, but the South Americans have great art skills and the warmest personalities in any hemisphere. Worth a try!

Accounting, Finance & Legal
India, in particular Delhi has many companies with very educated people engaged in Accounting outsourcing Finance outsourcing as well as LPO or Legal Process Outsourcing. Please keep in mind that the LPO companies cannot do all of the tasks that an American law firm can do, but they can do many support tasks at 30% of cost while you sleep.

(1) Finding the right country to outsource to is a combination of culture & cost effectiveness.

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A worldwide shortage of good .net programmers

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The old days
It used to be easy to hire programmers for many years, but recently a bubble in the .net programming market has formed, making it hard to get any programming resources at all, even if you pay top dollar. The only way to get work done is to offshore the work to Eastern Europe or India it seems. But, even they have a shortage of the higher end programmers.

But, when will this bubble end? Maybe sooner than you think!

What is India doing?
India is churning out programmers faster than a sausage machine turns out sausages — or at least it seems. The big companies gulp up all the good ones too. In India there are tons of junior level programmers available, but where are the seasoned programmers? Gulped up! They exist, but they just are not available for consumption by smaller companies. However, as the years go on, all of the existing junior programmers will mature into seasoned programmers, and hopefully there will be too many programmers for the big companies to devour. Or, there could be a turn in the world economy where the big guys start laying off workers left and right. It is unpredictable and markets are always cyclical in any case. But, programmers grow on trees in India and that is not going to change.

The hidden giant!
The world looks at India when it thinks about software outsourcing. The Philippines doesn’t do that much IT outsourcing compared to call center work. But, what about China? China focused more on manufacturing for decades, but now is doing a lot more with IT outsourcing. Chinese companies tend to be larger than most Indian companies which is a huge difference. But, the key fact to understand here is that Chinese will work 16 hour days, and can be very efficient if they put their mind to it. If the Chinese decide to take over IT outsourcing, then in a matter of years, the game will be over. India is too lackadaisical to win the game. China will win and take most of the market with it. This could mean mass unemployment for American programmers and a glass ceiling for salary increases in India.

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Should you annoy people on purpose to test them out?

Categories: Hiring & Firing | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

I have learned in business that if people hate you, they won’t do good work for you. Many will just stop work all together. People lose their tempers all the time. Americans are far less patient than people in India — just for your knowledge. When we screen outsourcing companies, we ask them a bunch of questions to learn how they think. But, maybe we should ask a few questions to test their patience as well. In real life, in a business relationship, there will be situations where you have to go over nit-picky details to straighten out an ugly situation. If they don’t have patience, learn this up front.

But, what questions could you ask people that will annoy them?
I asked an IT outsourcing company details about their corporate status. They became furious and said they didn’t want to work with me anymore. I asked a programming outsourcing firm about their birth data so I could do an astrological chart to prove compatibility. They flat rejected my question.

Honestly, if you want to have a happy family, you should find out BEFORE the wedding if you are compatible, and an astrological chart can help identify areas of incompatibility — although it still is rather wishy-washy at best. A chart is better than nothing.

I ask people how they would fit a giraffe in a refrigerator.
I ask people what they would do if they won a million dollars.
The point is that if you keep asking questions to the point where it is ridiculous, you can test their patience.

“Are you testing my patience?”
“Yes, that is exactly what I am doing — as a matter of policy. If I don’t know where you break, then it is not safe to enter a work relationship with you”

Err on the side of safety when hiring companies or individuals. A single bad choice can cost you thousands, while shopping around only costs hundreds! You need to shop around anyway, so shop smart in addition to shopping hard.

What is better about your BPO company?

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Do you run a call center, BPO, KPO, software or IT outsourcing company? Do clients ever ask you what is better about your company? I think they should — and you should know how to answer them as well. Most companies that our staff talk to have no idea what is better about their company. Perhaps nothing is better about their company, and that is why they don’t know how to answer us. But, there SHOULD be something better about your company, otherwise how are you in business? Here are some ways to be the best BPO company possible.

(1) You could be faster at doing the same work or processes others do. I knew a pianist who could play the minute waltz in less than 33 seconds. We clocked him. It didn’t sound great being played that fast, but if you are in a hurry waiting for a train that is about to arrive, and want to hear the minute waltz, that particular pianist is the one to hire.

(2) You could have nicer staff than other BPO companies. These days, I am rarely happy about anyone’s staff. Every company seems to have one shining employee who brightens up my day, and the rest — well — the rest are the rest! Let’s put it that way.

(3) You could be cheaper. Some companies are cheaper, but don’t get the job done right. Are they really cheaper after the hassle? But, what if you really do get jobs done correctly and STILL are cheaper? Well, then you really are cheaper.

(4) You could have a nicer looking office. For outsourcing, nobody is coming to your office, so it doesn’t matter.

(5) Your receptionist could have a nicer sounding voice. A nice voice makes an impression

(6) You could have more flexible terms. Many companies are rigid these days. Having terms that benefit the client might bring you more clients. HAVING TERMS THAT BENEFIT YOU, MIGHT BRING YOU MORE YOU’S (if that is possible or desireable).

(7) You might do a better job and follow directions more.

(8) You might train your staff better.

(9) You could hire a fancier salesperson who is great at getting you new clients who you might be equally good at keeping (or losing).

(10) You might offer more related services. ONE STOP SHOPPING. If you do web design, you could also offer programming, social media, blog installation, and more. If you do call center work, you could offer data entry, surveys, statistical analysis, and virtual private assistants.

But, the bottom line is — no matter what is better about your company, if you can’t express that to the world, then it will take them a lot longer to find out what is good about you!