Sunday, January 14, 2007

Outsourcing Strategies & Rural Development

An article recently in business week where a company in India is pushing outsourcing from the major cities to the rural areas to both reduce costs and at the same time bring a better standard of living and quality of life to people who want to stay closer to family or pursue community roles. The article focus's on GramIT (gram is the Sanskrit word for "village") who is seeking to transplant India's tech services boom to some of the country's 600,000 villages.

It is a win-win if they can make it work. To me it isn't a lot different than the concept of homesourcing that some companies in the US utilize, but what makes it interesting is how quickly India is innovating in this way, especially given the lack of infrastructure to these locations.

I think this movement could also be advanced in North America to bring back life to rural areas. Not everyone wants to move to the city for work and most are willing to earn a little less to stay in rural areas if given the opportunity. I am a big proponent of outsourcing, but its important think about your options - offshore may not be the solution to everything. Think about the skills and services you require, and then come up with an outsourcing strategy that can both reduced costs and make life better for all parties involved.

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