Outsourcing Outsourcing - The World is Flatter than you think
The September 24th issue of New York Times was interesting and eventful. There were ofcourse detailed reports of all the happenings that day in the city and nation : the visit of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmedinijad, India at 60 celebrations, the deepening mortgage crisis in the US, the usual political drumbeats before the 2008 elections,etc. But interestingly, the entire page 4 was dedicated to describing the Twenty-Twenty cricket world cup – a new brand of instant cricket that has become increasingly popular not only crossing countries in its entertainment value but also crossing genders. Yes, the women like this game as much as the men (as the article reported). Will it be successful in America? Time will tell. However, an even more interesting article was on the bottom of the cover page : "Outsourcing Works and So India is exporting jobs"
The author here described how companies like Infosys are having many American graduates fly in for a novel experience – A six month training in Bangalore followed by assignment options anywhere in the world including back in America.. AMR Research this week has written about Indian companies setting up numerous near-shore delivery centers in US time-zones. India is outsourcing outsourcing.
As luck may have it, this week, I was called by our academic relations team to present to the students of Georgia-Tech, a top engineering university in Atlanta, US and talk about the same program referred to in the article above on why it would make sense for these students to consider Infosys as a career option for internships or full-time assignments. We presented on how the world is flattening and it is important for the students of today to get India/China assignments early in their resumes. The audience itself was an equal mix of students of Chinese, Indian, European and American origin. At the end of the presentation, one of the American students walked upto us and enquired about full-time positions for Americans in our China office. He mentioned that he had already done 3 years of undergrad in China, completed his graduation in the US and wanted to go back to get some experience in China, India, East Asia and Australia before coming back to the US. The experience he said would be invaluable for the rest of his career. We had all along been preaching to the choir! I don’t know if Georgia-Tech was the exception but students today are gearing up fast to deal with the flat-world. Programs like the one Infosys has instituted is accelerating this awareness.
Coincidentally, one of my clients, a senior business-IT executive of one of the most successful CPG companies in the world was visiting Georgia-Tech along with his CEO to deliver an inspirational talk to the students there on how compelling their value proposition was for potential career aspirants. He mentioned that even they could not beat the Infosys proposition of providing emerging markets and global delivery experience early in the career in capsules like we had structured.
This CPG company is a true flat-world company and the senior IT executive felt that emerging market and global delivery experience was an imperative for all their leaders, not optional at all. Young students and progressive companies are all adapting fast to the flat world, faster than you think. They are getting ready for the future. Are you?