Untitled1Outsourcing has been used as a tool for organizations to manage many factors ranging from cost containment to capacity management.  The use of sourcing as both a tactical and strategic tool is not a short-term phenomenon.  Time and the accumulated experiences of many have lead to the accumulated lore based on opinions, facts and urban myths.

Outsourcing is a double-edged sword.  Even though sourcing has become a political hot potato, it is a tool for managing demand, a balance sheet or as a last resort a means to make short-term numbers The topic has it share of proselytizers.  Regardless of why an organization decides to consider OS, they need to go into the process with their eyes open.  In this highly charged arena, it has become difficult to determine what is true or merely opinion (and more importantly whether knowing the difference matters).

Most of the myths that have evolved around sourcing options are constructed upon individual grains of truth.  Unfortunately, many grains of truth have been wrapped in hysteria or marketing spin, swelling them to many times their original size.  Sifting through this morass by applying the correct level of due diligence is important when deciding on how to source your IT activities.  Failure to perform the necessary due diligence is a failure of fiduciary responsibility.  Five meta-categories of myths will be used to isolate and expose the myths of outsourcing:

  • Theory of More – Sourcing options are a tool to get higher productivity, faster time-to-market, better quality or some combination of the three.
  • Laws of Determinism – Higher levels of process or discipline will lead inevitably to a specific outcome of sourcing decisions.
  • Impact of External Pressures – Business pressures spawn specific types of sourcing decisions and can be addressed either through strategic or tactical sourcing decisions.
  • People As An Asset? (Can I Sell Them?) – People and organizations are highly intertwined in  both the sourcing decision process and chances for success.
  • Been There, Done That! – Each sourcing scenario is based on a set of beliefs and a willingness to address risk however each is very different.

Understanding the myths within each high level category and will provide you with a means to winnow through the chaff into a set of actionable truths.