Co-sourcing to be the new buzzword?

The outsourcing wave continues to rise as markets evolve. Business seem to have accepted outsourcing as critical to success and are now maturing with an emphasis on the best way to leverage the outsourcing advantage. As more companies outsource and the knowledge bank on outsourcing increases, the blurred definitions of the scope and risks involved in outsourcing are slowly beginning to clear.

One of the newer trends that seem to be emerging is ‘co-sourcing’ . This means integrating onshore with offshore work models, people and technology. Conceptualized by IT guru, entrepreneur and founder of HCL infosystems Shiv Nadar, co-sourcing is a model that involves “relocating a part of the workforce into low-cost countries.” This means that a part of the onshore team would actually relocate and merge with the offshore team. This new integrated team would then be enhanced and trained to deliver value added services.

For instance, in 2001, HCL infosystems took 350 people from Britsh Telecom to work with 2000 people from India and today, more than 3000 people work for BT out of both countries.

For some companies, this could translate into a radical transformation drive, that involves a relook at cost structure, re-location both internally and externally and a lot more.

While this could considerably bring down the common risk factors associated with outsourcing – project transition, communication and quality adherence, the relocation process of people to offshore locations could turn out to be a situation where you’ve bitten off more than you can chew.

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