Home Again

Outsourcing the outsourced


The outsourcing of jobs to India has worked so well that the Indians have decided to do some outsourcing themselves. With Indian salaries on the rise and the rupee stronger than ever, the Bangalore-based software services company Infosys, which specializes in "strategic offshore outsourcing," is increasingly sending clients, via India, to back offices in China, Romania, the Czech Republic, and Mexico. The company's objective, Infosys Senior Vice President Ashok Vemuri told The New York Times, is "to take the work from any part of the world and do it in any part of the world."

Increasingly India is becoming a clearinghouse for outsourced labor to places like Latin America. When an American customer needed Spanish-language banking software developed, Infosys outsourced the job back across the ocean. According to the Times, the bank simply hired three dozen engineers working for Infosys from Monterrey, Mexico, 150 miles south of the U.S. border.

One of Infosys' Indian rivals, Wipro Technologies, has gone even closer, outsourcing jobs back to poorer (or what Wipro Chairman Azim Premji calls "less developed") American states such as Georgia and Idaho. As an added benefit, Wipro President P.R Chandrasekar explained upon announcing the opening of the company's Atlanta facility, "The work we're doing requires more and more knowledge of the customers' businesses, and you want local people to do that."