Staffing Alternatives in Distributed Software Development – Part 2 of 2

This article is 2nd in a two-part series describing research examine conducted on Midwest IT executives and their attitudes on offshore outsourcing alternatives. This article will evaluate the study’s technique, summarize the second one, four of its 8 key findings, and provide some closing mind. The first article in the series introduced the study and summarized the primary 4 of its eight key findings.



This study’s target audience covered those who are accountable for making software program development staffing choices at era agencies wherein software program development became critical to the corporations’ center assignment. Interviewees had titles such as CEO, president, CTO, director or vice-president of IT, and director or vice-president of software improvement. Respondents’ headquarters had been located in Minneapolis/St. Paul metropolitan place of Minnesota. Out of a pool of 250 randomly decided on corporations, phone interviews were carried out with 49 individuals representing IT organizations with as much as 500 full-time equivalents (FTEs). Among respondents, the average variety of FTEs engaged in software development sports changed into forty (40).

Interviews were performed in September 2007. The sponsor of this study changed into no longer recognized in the course of the interviews.

Finding #five – Cost is the least vital element in making outsourcing selections. Software development executives had been then asked to charge the importance of a chain of factors in their decisions concerning outsourcing software improvement to either U.S. Or offshore companies, the usage of a 1-5 scale with 1 being “very low” and 5 being “very excessive.” Somewhat especially, fee or price range concerns ranked lifeless last, making it the least critical factor in determining whether or no longer to outsource-seemingly due to IT managers’ improved ability to forecast correctly and finances for outsourced software program development resources. Not fantastically, the leading element in those choices is that IT manager has a sturdy choice for using personnel instead of contractors. Similarly, a negative personal belief of outsourcing in standard came in as the second-most-vital factor.

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The subsequent-most-important factor becomes a general challenge. Managers believe they’ll have inadequate management over settlement personnel to make certain hit projects, followed by utilizing issues that during-house improvement process and approaches have been ill-defined, and therefore no longer conducive to powerful outsourcing. Managers also trust their in-residence structures are too complicated for effective outsourcing, accompanied by the fear that their inner hardware or software program surroundings do not lend themselves to successful outsourcing.

Finding #6 – IT managers are commercial enterprise-savvy in their offshoring decisions. After learning individuals’ concerns with outsourcing in general, they have been asked to charge the importance of a series of factors or considerations regarding their importance in making selections about utilizing offshore software improvement contractors. Again, respondents rated those elements using a 1-5 scale, with 1 being “very low’ and 5 being “very high.” For many human beings in the IT enterprise, the pinnacle-of-thoughts concerns regarding offshoring tend to be cultural problems, time-sector differences, and language or conversation concerns. Such become now not the case in this examination. Although issues about language barriers rated pretty excessive, basic, cultural, and time area issues ranked as the least vital offshoring elements.

Overall, software improvement executives are a great deal greater focused on commercial enterprise-orientated, backside line impacting troubles than societal worries and personal biases. The offshore supplier’s technical information ranked as the unmarried most vital component in these selections, followed by concerns about the capacity loss of highbrow assets.


Offshore vendors’ venture control capabilities and project controls also ranked pretty high, with an average score of three.6, accompanied by the seller’s information and revel in within the agency’s enterprise. Many respondents have also been involved that their in-residence challenge control and assignment controls can be insufficient for powerful offshoring. Pricing ranked fairly low among offshoring considerations, probably because most IT managers assume to obtain fairly appealing hourly costs from all offshore vendors.

Finding #7 – India has been the dominant worldwide middle for offshore outsourcing paintings. Participants had been requested to signify the offshore places from which their company has utilized contract assets within the beyond, from a listing that protected: India, China, South Pacific, Eastern European countries, and Others. India led the sector with 33% of IT executives indicating they’ve applied Indian outsourcing sources in the beyond. Eastern Europe has been the second one-most-famous supply for offshore sources, with 22% of corporations working there. China and the South Pacific area positioned third and fourth, respectively.

Finding #8 – Eastern Europe will receive the highest consideration in future offshore software program development outsourcing engagements. Software improvement executives have been then requested to signify the usage of the identical listing of locations, the countries/regions they might recollect whilst making destiny offshore outsourcing selections. Eastern Europe ranked maximum amongst these key offshoring centers, with 71% of contributors indicating they would don’t forget enticing assets based on this place for their future offshore outsourcing desires. India dropped to the second area with sixty-seven %, followed by China with forty-three % and the South Pacific place with 37%. Israel and Ireland had been the maximum regularly mentioned international locations inside the “Other” category, each with 6% of contributors giving it future consideration.


Software improvement outsourcing has profoundly altered the IT staffing panorama. Most organizations nowadays make, as a minimum, a few uses of contract sources for equipped access to their high-quality personnel and for the power they gain through a nonpermanent group of workers. The abundance of nicely-certified and particularly less costly offshore personnel has opened new doors for IT leaders. However, it additionally raises questions and issues approximately their efficacy.

This takes a look at has discovered that managers choose to use employees whilst viable, believing they provide an extra measure of venture management and convey higher quality work than an outsourced group of workers. Firms with larger IT departments rely greater closely on contractors than smaller agencies and, irrespective of branch size, software program improvement executives at the moment are using greater offshore outsourcing employees than U.S.-based contractors. And no matter useful resource kind, the giant majority of managers were a success orchestrating projects involving employees based totally in more than one location.

Aside from their trendy bias toward hiring employees on every occasion feasible, participants tend to accept that their specific environment isn’t very conducive to effective outsourcing. Concerns that their industry, their in-house structures, and their improvement strategies had been sufficiently specific with a purpose to complicate outsourcing have been elements they taken into consideration when assessing outsourcing options. Major worries with overseas contractors covered intellectual property loss and a fashionable skepticism about the technical competencies, industry understanding, and challenge control controls had to supply success effects. While India has traditionally been the dominant center for gaining access to cheap offshore IT expertise, Eastern European countries have emerged because of the main contender for destiny offshoring engagements.


With an array of staffing alternatives at their disposal, software development executives ought to carefully study their alternatives, considering the professionals and cons of each staffing solution, consisting of the relative fees and the short- and long-term strategic implications for their corporation. In the choice-making system, IT managers’ personal attitudes, knowledge, ideas, biases, and perceptions play crucial roles in setting up their businesses’ destiny path. Collectively, the strategies hired by those executives will indelibly form the destiny of the worldwide IT enterprise.

Jeffery D. Silvers
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