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Current Facts about offshoring

Jesse Torres
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Joined: Mar 25, 2004
Posts: 985
I've read various posts on JavaRanch and have become somewhat confused. On one hand, various posts refer to offshoring as a trend that has all but doomed the IT employment market on America. On the other hand, some posts indicate that some employers are bringing back to US what they had initially offshored. What are the more accurate opinions over offshoring. If employers are bringing back jobs, what jobs are being brought back? What is the future of offshoring?

Thanks
Jason Cox
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Joined: Jan 21, 2004
Posts: 287
Here's offshoring as I see it in the Dallas area.

As far as I know, very few companies or IT shops went whole hog and off-shored their entire IT departments, though some did seriously consider it. I had warned some friends of mine on the business side that if they off-shored everybody and didn't leave some domestic IT staff, a majority of their projects would fail, if not all of them. A year later, after ignoring my advice, most of them have come back and said "Hey, you were right!". It's a shame that people had to lose their jobs for senior management to learn a lesson.

Regardless, most places simply stopped hiring IT folks or did so on a temporary basis. I saw the entire spectrum still being employed, from line developers up to architects. I never did see this big "analyst boom" that was predicted would be a result of off-shoring. In fact, it seems like people looking for work as analysts are still having just a tough time as developers.

A few companies, like JPMorgan, have decided that off-shoring, and even outsourcing, was a mistake. Others are realizing that not just any project can be off-shored. Still, TXU, an energy carrier, is outsourcing and off-shoring all of its IT functions as other companies have already tried and failed. I see companies like TXU and a few others as getting in on the tail-end of a dying trend.

I think off-shoring will continue and I consider it a valuable resource. I think off-shoring as a silver bullet has been proven as a fallacy (no duh!).

Unfortunately, I think the industry is still grappling with the real pros and cons of off-shoring, especially as the lower costs and better quality myths are repeatedly debunked. I think a lot of questions are being asked as to what its really good for. So I don't see a lot of room for entry level programmers in the industry right now. My concern is that we may see an "experience gap" in the coming years as a result.
Jesse Torres
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Joined: Mar 25, 2004
Posts: 985
Originally posted by Rob Aught:
My concern is that we may see an "experience gap" in the coming years as a result.[/QB]


Can you please elaborate on this "experience gap"....?

Thanks,
Tim Holloway
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Joined: Jun 25, 2001
Posts: 15657
    
  15

No one really knows. Not enough information is being captured, when it is, it doesn't all get brough to one place, and most of the analysts are spinning it anyway.

Anyway, IT offshoring's the myopic view. There's nothing magic about IT other than it being a little cheaper to uproot and move overseas. As I've said before, any job that doesn't require you to physically touch your customers is at risk. And some of those may end up becoming self-service and/or automated. I hate to sound so dour, but that's been the trend, and until the trend reverses, that's how I'll be. Someday we may place more of a premium on personal service and bespoke products than cheap and mass-produced, but for now, Wal-Mart wins hands down.

BTW, I almost never deal with may bank in person (only via web and ATMs), but when I go to the grocery store, I expect to have someone at the register to do the checkout. Or I go to a store that does.

History never repeats itself exactly, but it may be instructive to review what happened in manufacturing. Everyone rushed to offshore manufacturing. Some things didn't work. Some of the manufacturing work came back. Management reviewed what went wrong. Then they sent the work offshore again. Some of this also didn't work and came back. Repeated until everything's either offshored or proven non-offshorable (at least in the sense that there's no economic advantage to offshore it).

IT is a strange business. It's supposed to be all mechanical and deterministic, but in fact, all attempts to reduce software development to a rote process have failed. Considering that so much software is pretty horribly rendered anyway, it remains to be seen if if can be sent elsewhere without straining the end user's tolerance to the breaking point.

In tha case of commodity software, perhaps so. But the real appeal of software for many users is its ability to be tailored to their wants and needs, and a certain amount of direct interaction is important to that process.

So only time will truly tell. All I know is I spent over 2 years out of work and am not considered atypical and I'm very glad I'm not job hunting at the moment, not matter how strong they tell me the economy is, because around here, I don't see a whole lot of options.


Customer surveys are for companies who didn't pay proper attention to begin with.
Tim Holloway
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Joined: Jun 25, 2001
Posts: 15657
    
  15

Originally posted by Tim Holloway:
No one really knows. Not enough information is being captured, when it is, it doesn't all get brough to one place, and most of the analysts are spinning it anyway.

Anyway, IT offshoring's the myopic view. There's nothing magic about IT other than it being a little cheaper to uproot and move overseas. As I've said before, any job that doesn't require you to physically touch your customers is at risk. And some of those may end up becoming self-service and/or automated. I hate to sound so dour, but that's been the trend, and until the trend reverses, that's how I'll be. Someday we may place more of a premium on personal service and bespoke products than cheap and mass-produced, but for now, Wal-Mart wins hands down.

BTW, I almost never deal with my bank in person (only via web and ATMs), but when I go to the grocery store, I expect to have someone at the register to do the checkout. Or I go to a store that does.

History never repeats itself exactly, but it may be instructive to review what happened in manufacturing. Everyone rushed to offshore manufacturing. Some things didn't work. Some of the manufacturing work came back. Management reviewed what went wrong. Then they sent the work offshore again. Some of this also didn't work and came back. Repeated until everything's either offshored or proven non-offshorable (at least in the sense that there's no economic advantage to offshore it).

IT is a strange business. It's supposed to be all mechanical and deterministic, but in fact, all attempts to reduce software development to a rote process have failed. Considering that so much software is pretty horribly rendered anyway, it remains to be seen if if can be sent elsewhere without straining the end user's tolerance to the breaking point.

In tha case of commodity software, perhaps so. But the real appeal of software for many users is its ability to be tailored to their wants and needs, and a certain amount of direct interaction is important to that process.

So only time will truly tell. All I know is I spent over 2 years out of work and am not considered atypical. And I'm very glad I'm not job hunting at the moment, not matter how strong they tell me the economy is. Because around here, I don't see a whole lot of options.


(post-edit)
And fortunately, I've never been hired for my ability to type!
Tim Holloway
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Joined: Jun 25, 2001
Posts: 15657
    
  15

Or, it appears, to click on the right icon. Sorry about the repeat. I think I'll quit while I'm ahead.
Helen Thomas
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Joined: Jan 13, 2004
Posts: 1759
As I've said before, any job that doesn't require you to physically touch your customers is at risk. And some of those may end up becoming self-service and/or automated.

That's also known as employing your customers directly to reduce costs further.
Want to install a broadband internet connection ? Do it yourself.
Need a boarding card issued for your flight ? Do it yourself.
You are your bank's ,airline's and phone company's latest employee.
And your several invited friends.
[ September 17, 2004: Message edited by: Helen Thomas ]

Le Cafe Mouse - Helen's musings on the web - Java Skills and Thrills
"God who creates and is nature is very difficult to understand, but he is not arbitrary or malicious." OR "God does not play dice." - Einstein
Homer Phillips
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Joined: May 26, 2004
Posts: 311
Due to a combination of H-1B, L-1 and offshoring, the American software developer will become
extinct within the next few years. The percentage of new programmer jobs going to H-1Bs and L-1s
has shown a sharp upward trend in recent years. The Commerce Dept. says 28% of the programmer
jobs during 1996-1998 went to H-1Bs;19 the Federal Reserve Bank gave a 50% figure for 1999;20 and
my very rough calculations, based on an attempt to piece together different types of data, suggest a
figure as high as 90% for 2001. Jon Piot, COO of the Impact Innovations Group even estimates a
precise date at which the �extinction� of the American programmer will occur�2006.21 Given the
flurry of current activity in which many American programmers are being laid off and replaced by
H-1Bs/L-1s, that date may need to be revised to an earlier one.



Matloff's New Summary
Jason Cox
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Joined: Jan 21, 2004
Posts: 287
You know, I keep hearing that programmers are being laid off in favor of H-1B's and L-1's, but I've never actually seen it. Furthermore, I'm seeing a reverse trend in off-shoring in Dallas. So I just don't get the doom and gloom.

We're still a ways off from seeing a real recovery in the tech sector, but I doubt that technology jobs are going to disappear in this country.

However, they will never be like the dotcom days again because that was not sustainable. Everyone keeps waiting for this golden age to take hold again, but it's just not going to.

As for the "experience gap" comment -

We're seeing a trend right now that a lot of college students have abandoned their CS major and new ones are not signing up. Currently, as mid-level developers move into senior level (in terms of experience anyway) there is going to be a shortage of mid-level developers since the people who would normally fill that gap no longer want to chance technology as a career and have gone on to study other subjects.
Tim Holloway
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Joined: Jun 25, 2001
Posts: 15657
    
  15

Originally posted by Rob Aught:
You know, I keep hearing that programmers are being laid off in favor of H-1B's and L-1's, but I've never actually seen it. Furthermore, I'm seeing a reverse trend in off-shoring in Dallas. So I just don't get the doom and gloom.

Truthfully, neither have I. In actuality, it seems to be more of a matter of people being laid off in the "old" way (meaning since about 1988, permanent jobs don't exist anymore), but when hiring happens again, it's done from these sources.

However, stories are rife - including one documented suicide and another person who got so angry, he ran to replace his congressman - of people being forced to train foreign replacements, so it eveidently happens somewhere.

My own disillusionment came when I was laid off from a position I'd held for 6 years and considered becoming a consultant/contractor, preferably a telecommuting one. I bid on projects, but nary a one did I receive. In fact, the primary site I used (guru.com) went first to replacing individual contracts with advertising contracting companies, and then folded altogether. eLance I wasn't so thrilled with, since you had to pay them before you could even bid, with no guarantees you'd see your money back. However, you could see what international contractors were claiming that they could do the work for, and I would have been better off working at Radio Shack.


We're still a ways off from seeing a real recovery in the tech sector, but I doubt that technology jobs are going to disappear in this country.

However, they will never be like the dotcom days again because that was not sustainable. Everyone keeps waiting for this golden age to take hold again, but it's just not going to.

Which brings up another matter for me. I don't live anywhere near Silicon Valley, and I never saw the fabled masses of dot-commers myself, just people who'd been in the field before the Internet took hold and now are hurting for employment.

Obviously there were many dot-commers, but how many of the 400,000 positions we've lost in IT since 1991 were the wannabes vs. the experienced pros, I don't know. At a rough guess, I doubt it was more than about 3-4 years that college students saw the road to riches leading through IT, and that's a labor bubble which should have depleted fairly quickly, not a long-term groundswell.

The dot-com age was spectacular but it was fairly brief. I think that the major downturn in college enrollments probably has more to do with low expectations of getting any job in IT rather than in the evaporation of the work-yourself-silly-for-2-years-and-retire-rich-at-25 dream.

It should be noted that even in manufacturing, not everything has been offshored. The question that makes us all nervous is "How much will be left?"
[ September 20, 2004: Message edited by: Tim Holloway ]
Kishore Dandu
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Joined: Jul 10, 2001
Posts: 1934
My personal observations:
1) off-shoring is here to stay(irrespective of debacles from JpMorgan etc). It can be proven by the ever increasing contracts grabbed by wipro, Infosys etc and the emphasis for off-shore hiring from EDS, IBM global services etc.

2) At the same time, the hiring has pickedup reasonably well in Dallas area and I haven't seen anybody with reasonable smarts and technical knowhow and willingness to work hard last more than 2 months without getting a new job.

So with respect to Dallas area, effects of offshoring is getting lesser as the days are progressing.


Kishore
SCJP, blog
Arjun Shastry
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Joined: Mar 13, 2003
Posts: 1871
Actually some offshore IT projects succeed some fail.Failed projects don't make any news in media.


MH
Kishore Dandu
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Joined: Jul 10, 2001
Posts: 1934
Originally posted by Arjun Shastry:
Actually some offshore IT projects succeed some fail.Failed projects don't make any news in media.


may be that is the case in Indian media.

Here in US they are given lot of microscopic scrutiny and publicised such that it becoming common(to give some recipe for happyness for people here)
Arjun Shastry
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Joined: Mar 13, 2003
Posts: 1871
Only time can tell whether offshoring will continue or not.All projects can not succeed similarly all projects can not fail.Many companies see offshore as cost saving while some see as long investment while some see as profit making centers.This is not just related to IT or India but anywhere.
GE came to India as for cost saving.It outsourced its work to TATA and now it has its research center and its other companies and has collaboration with Indian companies too.AOL/IBM see offshore for cost saving.Oracle does it for cost saving and profit making.Dell/HSBC see only cost saving.Texas instrument sees as long investment.So depending upon business domain, company's objective,economic condition ,offshoring(anywhere) will suceed or fail.

[ September 21, 2004: Message edited by: Arjun Shastry ]
[ September 21, 2004: Message edited by: Arjun Shastry ]
Jeroen Wenting
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Joined: Oct 12, 2000
Posts: 5093
The offshoring hype is ending as ever more companies are feeling the pain of massive failure of offshored projects (far higher percentages than previous local run projects) combined with cost that's higher than expected (because of overly optimistic estimates) of offshoring projects.

The first companies are even beginning to reverse their offshoring and reestablishing IT departments at home but they're being cautious about it.
And who's to blame them? They've just weathered a massive failure in their offshoring advantage as well as a sliding economy (which is just beginning to look better again but where will it go from here?) at the same time.
So they're expanding slowly while still companies that haven't been burned yet fall over each other to get on the offshoring bandwagon and close IT shops.
The net effect is that at current there is little or no growth in the number of IT jobs (though the massive decline seems to have stopped or slowed down considerably) while there still is a (declining) influx of new people into the market who started their training at the height of the boom around 1999-2000.
As a result the number of people seeking jobs is increasing while the number of jobs is not, leading to falling compensation and companies being able to once again make whatever demands they want on prospective employees who are desperate to get a job in their chosen field before their unemployment benefits run out and they'll have to take up menial labour leading to a quick loss of any chance at all to get back to a decent paying job.

So we're back in the situation of the mid 1990s with impossible demands (10 years experience with developing EJBs on Windows 2000 anyone?) which can be leveraged by recruiters to give prospects lower compensation in "exchange" for being content to live with someone who doesn't quite meet their demands.


42
Helen Thomas
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Joined: Jan 13, 2004
Posts: 1759
Originally posted by Jeroen Wenting:

The first companies are even beginning to reverse their offshoring and reestablishing IT departments at home but they're being cautious about it.


That was planned all along - new IT departments at home and off-shoring the rest. There are advantages to companies as well as political advantages.
Arjun Shastry
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Joined: Mar 13, 2003
Posts: 1871
{
....pain of massive failure of offshored projects (far higher percentages than previous local run projects)
}
I doubt whether its a massive failture.Big shops in India are present since many years.
Texas Instruments(1984),IBM(1992),Accenture(1986),Oracle(1990s),Microsoft(1987),GE(I think late 80s),Motorola,Yahoo(1990s).I never heard these shops laying off people here.In fact some of them increase their staff on regular interval.Oracle has quadrapled its staff in recent 5 years.
Small to mid size companies might fail on offshoring.But every offshore project will fail(or succeed) is a myth.
Jesse Torres
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 25, 2004
Posts: 985
Originally posted by Jeroen Wenting:
The first companies are even beginning to reverse their offshoring and reestablishing IT departments at home but they're being cautious about it.
Thanks Jeroen for your input.


Originally posted by Helen Thomas:
That was planned all along - new IT departments at home and off-shoring the rest. There are advantages to companies as well as political advantages.
Can you please elaborate on your "political advantages" comment?

Also, if the offshoring trend is indeed being reversed, I wonder when hiring will increase, if ever?
Helen Thomas
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Joined: Jan 13, 2004
Posts: 1759
"Political" may be too strong a word. I meant opening up new markets, even indirectly. For e.g. India and China would be creating goods and services for less developed countries. Other investments would be coming from developed countries. (Or currently under redevelopment countries).

There's a small demand now but expect a slump next year again.(house prices are expected to fall steeply). Businesses are re-organising in small steps of confidence rather than bounds and leaps. The dot-com era won't be seen again for a long while.
[ September 21, 2004: Message edited by: Helen Thomas ]
Kishore Dandu
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Joined: Jul 10, 2001
Posts: 1934
Originally posted by Jeroen Wenting:
The offshoring hype is ending as ever more companies are feeling the pain of massive failure of offshored projects (far higher percentages than previous local run projects) combined with cost that's higher than expected (because of overly optimistic estimates) of offshoring projects.

The first companies are even beginning to reverse their offshoring and reestablishing IT departments at home but they're being cautious about it.
And who's to blame them? They've just weathered a massive failure in their offshoring advantage as well as a sliding economy (which is just beginning to look better again but where will it go from here?) at the same time.
So they're expanding slowly while still companies that haven't been burned yet fall over each other to get on the offshoring bandwagon and close IT shops.
The net effect is that at current there is little or no growth in the number of IT jobs (though the massive decline seems to have stopped or slowed down considerably) while there still is a (declining) influx of new people into the market who started their training at the height of the boom around 1999-2000.
As a result the number of people seeking jobs is increasing while the number of jobs is not, leading to falling compensation and companies being able to once again make whatever demands they want on prospective employees who are desperate to get a job in their chosen field before their unemployment benefits run out and they'll have to take up menial labour leading to a quick loss of any chance at all to get back to a decent paying job.

So we're back in the situation of the mid 1990s with impossible demands (10 years experience with developing EJBs on Windows 2000 anyone?) which can be leveraged by recruiters to give prospects lower compensation in "exchange" for being content to live with someone who doesn't quite meet their demands.


your first paragraph is a complete bogus.

Don't give people false information.
Jesse Torres
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 25, 2004
Posts: 985
Originally posted by Kishore Dandu:


your first paragraph is a complete bogus.

Don't give people false information.


Hello Kishore,

Are you in US?

Thanks,
Jason Cox
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jan 21, 2004
Posts: 287
I always detect a real air of antagonism sometimes when these offshoring discussions spring up. I understand a lot of defensiveness that comes from our technology brethren overseas and I want to make it real clear that a lot of my feelings about offshoring is not directed at them.

The reason we see a lot of offshore projects fail is not necessarily due to a lack of technical talent. Granted, I have seen some really BAD code come from offshore. The irony is I'm currently working on a project where the code I am fixing looks just as bad as the stuff we got from an offshore shop at my last job. The difference is, this current crop of bad code was all written domestically. I'll get back to this in a bit though. The reason why I think many offshore projects fail is because many of them are ill-suited to be offshored. Most custom applications need a high level of user acceptance to be deemed a "success". Even if you meet all the technical requirements, if the customer is unhappy with the delivered product then you have failed.

I'm watching companies send projects for custom applications, which seems to be a majority of the development work I've been exposed to, overseas. These projects need user acceptance and they need constant communication for testing and design consistency. The problem has been that there is typically a 24 hour delay in many cases due to the timezone differences. You can offshore the QA department if you want, but then how does the customer, which is in the US, work with QA to ensure the end result is going to meet the business needs? You could completely seperate user acceptance testing from technical testing, except you still have that delay time between QA and the business side if they need a decision on something. The process is slow because unless you offshore the customer themselves you're always going to have a gap where no communication takes place. Unless you're willing to have one side be on the other's schedule, but then you've got one side operating at hours where they would normally be sleeping.

In short, any project where you need regular interaction between the business and technical sides is probably not going to be a success if you send a majority of the technical work overseas. It can be done, I've seen it. However, it took a lot of coordination and I can't say any money was saved nor was the quality of the product any better. So what was the point?

If the technical side can work in a vaccuum, more or less, then I don't see any reason why it can't be offshored. Of course, the overseas talent then complain that they are little more than code-monkeys. I agree and understand the frustration, but unfortunately any other kind of work is a bad candidate and the overseas staff will be blamed for the failure despite the fact that the project never should have gone to them in the first place.

Part of the problem is that there is this myth that Indian developers all walk on water and work for peanuts. At least this is how the business tends to see them. Now, the folks I have worked with in the US have GENERALLY been pretty bright and so polite its embarrassing in comparison to my barbarian American behavior. However, as far as the overseas folks go, I haven't seen anything that really differentiates them from US developers. Worse? Not really. Better? No evidence of that yet. About the same? Definitely. Of course, part of this myth is self-serving, its used as justification by the bean counters to use offshore resources instead of domestic IT staff. I can almost hear them meeting now "In India, everyone has a double genius level IQ, are 7 feet tall, can communicate telepathically, and will work for 50 cents a year!" I swear its like something out of a Dilbert cartoon. Now that businesses are dissatisfied with offshore results, its as though they are penalizing their offshore counterparts for revealing themselves as mere mortals. Its worth noting that I've never seen anyone from India try to sell themselves this way, but I certainly get that impression from the business.

Herein lies my real concern. While I see some folks in for the long-haul, there is a bubble about to burst overseas that we created. Not content to decimate our own domestic IT resources, we're going to do it to the Indians as well. The effect will be felt more there than other places because that has been the focus of most offshore efforts. While some places may still be receiving contracts, I wonder how much of their business is projects that have not wrapped up yet. I know of a few shops that have already committed to no more offshoring once they wrap up their existing projects or after their contracts expire. I see a lot of the same signs that I did at the end of the dotcom bubble. Those that believe this level of activity is sustainable and is going to last are probably in for a big surprise. This won't kill offshoring, but I think we're about to see a reversal, with a return to SOME offshoring in the following years. Granted, we're already seeing some companies go back to all domestic staff, but I suspect that is just the tip of the iceberg.

I suppose you could say "What do you care? you're an American." My answer would be, I guess I just don't like the thought of handing prosperity to people and then yanking it away. Most of the people who will be affected by this, and are affected by this, are just regular working slobs like myself. Maybe we'll use some wisdom and we won't burst the bubble. We'll effectively manage projects and figure out what projects are good offshore candidates and reduce the overall effort to a reasonable level over time without simply yanking everything away all at once.

Yeah right.

And of course, even after the offshore bubble bursts, there is no promise that US hiring is going to get any better. If it does, it will probably be totally unrelated to offshore work.
Tim Holloway
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Joined: Jun 25, 2001
Posts: 15657
    
  15

At this stage of the economy, I doubt greatly that there's going to be a "Great Indian Implosion". We're in a pretty poor excuse for an upswing, but nonetheless it is an upswing and I think that any Indian IT projects lost will probably be easily covered by the fact that the US is back in a growth mode and - for better or worse - most of the other economies on this planet tend to track the ups and downs of the U.S.

Now as to whether the current runup in Indian IT salaries is sustainable is yet to be determined, though considering that they're still being paid less than half what their US counterparts are, H1-B's included, it may well prove to be the case.

Onshoring makes me feel (marginally) more comfortable, and I've seen some projects developing where the on-the-scenes interaction is much more important than saving money of software development (at least to begin with). However, it's not like Oracle, Sun, IBM, or GE are abandoning India.
Jesse Torres
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Joined: Mar 25, 2004
Posts: 985
Originally posted by Rob Aught:




Part of the problem is that there is this myth that Indian developers all walk on water and work for peanuts. At least this is how the business tends to see them. Now, the folks I have worked with in the US have GENERALLY been pretty bright and so polite its embarrassing in comparison to my barbarian American behavior. However, as far as the overseas folks go, I haven't seen anything that really differentiates them from US developers. Worse? Not really. Better? No evidence of that yet. About the same? Definitely. Of course, part of this myth is self-serving, its used as justification by the bean counters to use offshore resources instead of domestic IT staff. I can almost hear them meeting now "In India, everyone has a double genius level IQ, are 7 feet tall, can communicate telepathically, and will work for 50 cents a year!" I swear its like something out of a Dilbert cartoon. Now that businesses are dissatisfied with offshore results, its as though they are penalizing their offshore counterparts for revealing themselves as mere mortals. Its worth noting that I've never seen anyone from India try to sell themselves this way, but I certainly get that impression from the business.



You answered my concerns. Thanks Rob!
Kishore Dandu
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Joined: Jul 10, 2001
Posts: 1934
Originally posted by Jesse Torres:


Hello Kishore,

Are you in US?

Thanks,


I am born in India.

Spend most of my adult life(what ever u define that as) in US.

Working in Dallas for more than a decade(and I love to watch Americas team in Action).
Jesse Torres
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 25, 2004
Posts: 985
Originally posted by Kishore Dandu:




and I love to watch Americas team in Action).


Hello Kishore,

What or who is Americas team?

Thanks,
Kishore Dandu
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jul 10, 2001
Posts: 1934
Originally posted by Jesse Torres:


Hello Kishore,

What or who is Americas team?

Thanks,


Dallas cowboys(american football) are called Americas team.
Jeroen Wenting
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 12, 2000
Posts: 5093
Originally posted by Kishore Dandu:


your first paragraph is a complete bogus.

Don't give people false information.


it's not, at least in my experience.
I've been involved in several offshoring projects and that was the outcome in all of them.

You may not like it if your countrymen are discovered to be what they really are rather than the miracle workers they're portrayed to be sometimes but that's the simple reality of truth.
Jeroen Wenting
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 12, 2000
Posts: 5093
Originally posted by Helen Thomas:
"Political" may be too strong a word. I meant opening up new markets, even indirectly. For e.g. India and China would be creating goods and services for less developed countries. Other investments would be coming from developed countries. (Or currently under redevelopment countries).


That's the original inception of opening departments abroad. Nothing wrong with that and generally it works, it's no different from Toyota building a factory in the US to serve the US market thus reducing shipping cost as well as building up goodwill in the foreign market by offering a somewhat local product there.

The failure is not going to be in those departments/companies. The failing is happening in the departments and companies that were moved wholesale to other countries to remotely produce and support products for the home market of the parent company.
So the Indian shop that's taken over the role of the US development group creating custom applications for US customers, not the localisation group adapting those applications to the Indian market.

Over the previous several years I've been involved in several such projects, all of them failed because of poor communication, poor deliverables, massive cost overruns, or most frequently a combination of those factors.
In one case (this one developed in India) the deliverable we received (several months and tens of thousands of Euros over budget) was to our surprise completely inconsistent with the design documents we'd sent to them and they'd signed off on.
Not one of the required functionalities was included (those had been included to some extent in the pilots and demos they'd sent us during development, making our surprise even greater).
When we presented them with the fact they flatly refused to do any more work on the project unless and until we paid them in full including the extra time they'd spent (this on a fixed-price project, they suddenly charged extra time which was wholly contradictory to the contract) and threatened to sue us unless we paid immediately (contract stated no payment of the remaining sum (part had been paid in advance) until delivery of goods which clearly hadn't happened).

This behaviour may be extreme, but parts of it I've seen in every single offshored project I've been involved in (or have been given information about from colleagues who were involved in them).

Such level of incompetence and poor business practices I've never encountered with local companies, whether customers or suppliers.
Arjun Shastry
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Joined: Mar 13, 2003
Posts: 1871
According to Norman Matloff,offshoring won't increase more than 5% of total jobs.
{
what they really are rather than the miracle workers they're portrayed to be sometimes but that's the simple reality of truth
}
Print media on both the sides are exggagerating issue to increase their readership.
Helen Thomas
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Joined: Jan 13, 2004
Posts: 1759
Not one of the required functionalities was included (those had been included to some extent in the pilots and demos they'd sent us during development, making our surprise even greater).

This reminds me of building construction practices abroad ( and here in Europe often) where construction is staged to get the maximum payment - they can be delays of years between phases. An example ids the building of Freedom Towers where the Twin Towers once stood.
What's surprising is that buildings/facilities have been completed in places like Bangalore - Bangalore may not be an option if the poorest migrate to Bangalore and start making their demands known. The richest in Bangalore/India would have to be taxed heavily for future progress.

(The NY emergency workers are already making their effect on re-building of Freedom Towers by way of compensation from the property leaseholder who may have to sell the lease back to the Port Authority.)
[ September 22, 2004: Message edited by: Helen Thomas ]
Arjun Shastry
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Joined: Mar 13, 2003
Posts: 1871
{
What's surprising is that buildings/facilities have been completed in places like Bangalore - Bangalore may not be an option if the poorest migrate to Bangalore and start making their demands known. The richest in Bangalore/India would have to be taxed heavily for future progress
}
I think Govt. policies decide the progress and not rich people.They influence the govt. decision making.True.Bangalore is not an good option for poorest or even if he/she is not in IT related area.If there is a sign that jobs are moving somewhere else,I am the first person to moveo from here and back to native place.
[ September 22, 2004: Message edited by: Arjun Shastry ]
Helen Thomas
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Joined: Jan 13, 2004
Posts: 1759
Yeah. Governments tax rich people. The benefits with a place like Bangalore is that other tech like Bio technology can be easily moved in if IT goes elsewhere. The area has a history of adapting very quickly.Renting out office space would offer long term opportunities. I am not sure what that would do to it's sense of community. Like in other big towns in India migrant communities just get razed to the ground. If the media is anything to go by.
Kishore Dandu
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Joined: Jul 10, 2001
Posts: 1934
Originally posted by Jeroen Wenting:


it's not, at least in my experience.
I've been involved in several offshoring projects and that was the outcome in all of them.

You may not like it if your countrymen are discovered to be what they really are rather than the miracle workers they're portrayed to be sometimes but that's the simple reality of truth.


I hear to the contrary from companies(in dallas) involved with outsourcing. That includes Deloitte consulting, EDS, Wipro, Infosys.

May be u are working with a bad counterpart. That doesn't mean that all projects are lemon.

BTW I am aware of your antagonism towards Indians. But I don't give a da..
Homer Phillips
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Joined: May 26, 2004
Posts: 311
On-shore or off-shore I'll bet a non-trivial fraction of all big OO projects fail.
Tim Holloway
Saloon Keeper

Joined: Jun 25, 2001
Posts: 15657
    
  15

Originally posted by Homer Phillips:
On-shore or off-shore I'll bet a non-trivial fraction of all big OO projects fail.


OO? The general consensus - going back decades - is that anywhere from 33-66% of all IT projects fail. Some would even argue more than that, though a lot depends on whether you count "doesn't work as planned but we can live with what we got".
Jeroen Wenting
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Joined: Oct 12, 2000
Posts: 5093
Originally posted by Kishore Dandu:

BTW I am aware of your antagonism towards Indians. But I don't give a da..


I've nothing against Indians in general. Some of the finest minds I've worked with over the years were Indians and they were very sociable people.

What I do mind is Indians who come here basically asking "I want to take your job away, how do I go about it" and then are offended when people are less than helpful to them.
It's even worse when they refuse to word their questions in proper English. English isn't my native tongue either but I made the effort to become pretty fluent in it in order to communicate with foreigners. Many Indians I see online seem less inclined to make that effort yet get offended when their pidgin isn't understood or ignored.
Kishore Dandu
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jul 10, 2001
Posts: 1934
Originally posted by Jeroen Wenting:


I've nothing against Indians in general. Some of the finest minds I've worked with over the years were Indians and they were very sociable people.

What I do mind is Indians who come here basically asking "I want to take your job away, how do I go about it" and then are offended when people are less than helpful to them.
It's even worse when they refuse to word their questions in proper English. English isn't my native tongue either but I made the effort to become pretty fluent in it in order to communicate with foreigners. Many Indians I see online seem less inclined to make that effort yet get offended when their pidgin isn't understood or ignored.


I still keep my opinion about u. Idi..
Helen Thomas
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jan 13, 2004
Posts: 1759
Jeroen,

You really should stop upsetting people, bringing out their worst characteristics and thus proving your point.
Hu Jiabao
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Joined: Feb 16, 2004
Posts: 39
.People should must take control of themselves as theyare part of globalazation


working in Shanghai CHINA PRC
 
I agree. Here's the link: http://aspose.com/file-tools
 
subject: Current Facts about offshoring
 
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