Offshoring's hidden winners

2007

It's been a week since I've done any work – best not let the bosses hear that, but I decided to take advantage of something bosses here in America don't like – PTO, personal days, vacation days, etc. Call 'em what you want, I call them necessary.

Taking a week off to spend some time on the beach was exactly what the doctor ordered. However, to remind my fellow indentured servants of the importance of taking some much needed R&R (the kind where you don't work or check e-mail), that's not why I'm knocking.

I had the pleasure of catching up with an old friend who was recently made redundant at his job – more specifically; his position was outsourced to a mysterious place that we'll call "Asia". The irony of the situation is that he had to be re-hired – at a higher wage – to supervise the outsourced work.

Let me make that a little clearer – he was not managing the outsourced group, he was simply "correcting" the work that they delivered.

Huh?

From my own experience, I've been hired on several occasions as a consultant to come in and tidy, correct, re-write – pick whatever works for you- at a considerably high rate. These consultancy rates were almost always higher than what I was paid to simply come in and create user documentation from scratch.

I could give several examples of anecdotal evidence that shows that sometimes this outsourcing business really helps white-collar fellas. Unfortunately, this doesn't seems to be nearly as common outside the IT sector, where less-skilled positions are gone and never to return.

Fortunately for us, the bottom-liners that run Fortune 500 companies haven't noticed that they often have to re-hire those they sought to replace at a much greater cost! Sometimes a lack of vision works in our favor!

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