outsourcing

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Image courtesy of Walmart

Should You Outsource Analytics?

Outsourcing analytics activities can offer benefits, but it requires a carefully constructed relationship between the company and the business process organization (BPO). Customers must be careful not to lose their expertise or their core intellectual property. Research suggests that companies with superior analytics capabilities will approach outsourcing differently than companies that are analytically challenged.

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The Real Savings From IT Outsourcing

Research suggests that outsourcing IT can help reduce sales expenses and general and administrative costs, which are often four to five times IT costs. Managers need to take a balanced approach to their investments in internal systems and outsourcing to reap greater benefits in terms of cost savings. Analyzing the impact of outsourcing on non-IT costs and formulating strategies for maximizing the savings on these expenses can help companies get the most out of outsourcing spending.

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Outsourcing Business Processes for Innovation

Although many organizations initiate business process outsourcing to reduce costs or acquire new skills, it can evolve into much more. Sometimes, service providers deliver substantial long-term improvements to the client’s operating efficiency and strategic performance. But these improvements seldom happen unless clients and providers implement a process that combines acculturation across organizations, a method for generating ideas, adequate funding and a system for managing change.

Image courtesy of Flickr user Robert Scoble.

Managing the Human Cloud

Online crowdsourcing platforms are growing at double-digit rates and are starting to attract the attention of large companies. Just as cloud computing offers unconstrained access to processing capacity and storage, the “human cloud” promises to connect businesses to millions of workers on tap, ready to perform tasks and solve problems that range from the simple to the complex. The article explores four new human cloud models: The Facilitator model, The Arbitrator, The Aggregator, The Governor.

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Open Innovation and More

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In a recent interview with the website InnovationManagement, open innovation expert Henry Chesbrough discussed his new book, Open Services Innovation, and the importance of service innovation in general:

“We know a lot about how to innovate new products, new processes, and new technologies, but know far less about how to innovate

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Courtesy of IBM.

Putting It Together: How to Succeed in Distributed Product Development

The increase in outsourcing and offshoring of complex work has resulted in innovation efforts that require coordination across cultural, geographic and legal boundaries. If that coordination is mishandled, companies can find themselves needing to make multimillion- or even billion-dollar changes. The complexity of the task makes midcourse corrections likely. Managers must anticipate and adapt their processes in order to reduce risk and, ultimately, cost.

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The Practice of Global Product Development

Best practice in product development (PD) is migrating from local collaboration to global collaboration. Global product development (GPD) represents a transformation for business, and it applies to a range of industries. The objective of this article is to present frameworks that can help companies address strategic and tactical issues when considering GPD. The concepts have been developed through discussions with more than 100 companies in 15 countries in North America, Europe and Asia.

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Growth — in the virtual economy

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Depressed about the state of the real-world economy? Maybe you should attend tomorrow's Virtual Goods Summit 2008, an event in San Francisco looking at the growing business of buying and selling "virtual goods" in online games and on social-networking sites — for real-world money.

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Rethinking Procurement in the Era of Globalization

What used to be a matter of finding and purchasing goods and services at the most favorable price has changed. At some companies, procurement has become closely intertwined with strategic decision making and board policy at the highest levels of the organization.

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The New Practice of Global Product Development

Many manufacturers have established product development activities in different countries around the world. Yet their senior managers often struggle to tie those decentralized organizations into a cohesive, unified operation that can efficiently drive growth and innovation. New empirical frameworks may help unlock practices with which managers can deploy well-coordinated global product development strategies.

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Supply Chain Reality Check

There is a consensus among futurists that business is the only institution capable of providing effective global stewardship. As a result, a good deal of attention is being paid to mapping the future performance of businesses and the economies in which they operate.

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Strategic Outsourcing: Leveraging Knowledge Capabilities

The more companies outsource, the more they approach virtual organization, with knowledge centers interacting through mutual interest and electronic systems. To mitigate the risks associated with reduced authority, companies must develop “best in world” capabilities, leverage the capabilities of others and innovate constantly. The author shows how to slash innovation cycle times and costs by 60%-90% and develop the full potential of intellectual outsourcing.

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The Evolution of Japanese Subcontracting

What has led to the development of Japan’s particular method of subcontracting? Theories that have attempted to explain Japanese subcontracting have critical shortcomings. A combination of political, economic, technological, and strategic factors has resulted in subcontracting’s growth and survival.

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The Value of Selective IT Sourcing

When Eastman Kodak turned over the bulk of its IT operations to three outsourcing partners in 1989, outsourcing was a $4 billion a year business.1 Today, that number has grown to nearly $40 billion a year, according to the estimates of industry watchers Frost & Sullivan.

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