Saturday, 30 June 2007

Software Outsourcing and the Diminishing Quality

It had been almost 8 yrs now in the Industry and experience is counting... more and more....Yesterday for some reason we had a discussion on the diminishing quality of software with outsourcing.. specially when the world is slowly moving from India/China towards Ukraine and other nations and remembering my last week Meeting with Twain Harris CEO,ATC LLC on the software quality they got out of the projects from the Chinese Software development Ally... One thing we can smell coming to us in future is surely LESS WORK.

Why the Quality is going down is a bigger question which I would leave the experts to answer while I really focus on writing some aspects I feel is killing the trust in outsourcing...

1. Transparency :- I remember when I was tied up with a front runner in the Hospitality sector while been with TechShepherds Software Solutions in 2004 I realised that when the Customer offered the firm to be the Development Partner for their Major Integration projects, It was lack of transparency that caused several of one problems which finally resulted in a breakdown of relationship. The way demands are rising today it is expected that a Software portal is developed in weeks time and goes running in production within coughing periods... Now it is easier to do that.. but not necessarily in the correct way... I was talking to a developer working on a KEY collaboration tool and unfortunately my first feel was he did not understand why he was building the software... How will this help the Company that is looking to make this collaboration tool be one of the front runners in today's collaboration Market? secondly I realised that the Company wanting to build the product and the Team that was developing the product met only once a few weeks to KNOW whats the Status.

This was for sure a killer since there was no transparency in both the sides... each side should have made things more visible.. be it development efforts, needs, objectives or time lines and finances.... Lack of this transparency is the root cause of a NO TRUST zone. No wonder the Company will surely choose to go away with this development partner sooner or later...

2. Honesty: When I asked Mike (Twain H. as he is popularly known) why he wants to shut out the Chinese Operations his answer was it is not working due to finances and a NOT FIT Team.. honestly I think No one outsourcing is so honest to take that call... How Many Managers have you seen that say that "The Development Team we chose was wrong?" Or " The Team we work with is not of the required Quality?" well I guess none... No one here Outsourcing company or company taking the deal commits on this. Another Big issue to the broken trust is the Effective Team in Action and the way Service Industry is charging... Since there is lack of transparency in the development effort the Customer firm never knows what type of Team and who they are working with? as a result a Development resource of very High Grade is presented to the Customer company while a development resource coming out of college really is working over it... Faking the Orgasms sometimes are better I guess not this...

While it is important to enroute the Knowledge of the Business Model in the development Team who will work on your Business critical product it is also important that enough Transparency is created within....

Though I feel that it wont be enough to write everything here.... I will split up my experiences on the outsourcing problems as a Project Manager in the later blogs...

Regards
Sameer Shaikh
http://sameer-shaikh.blogspot.com