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What German IT decision Makers
think about Offshoring to India

We spoke with 3 German CIOs (Chief Information Officer), each being responsible for a huge IT department in a German bank, a German leasing bank and a German insurance. They all made their experience with outsourcing to India and decided for big partners in India. Here is what they said:

"When we decided about the partner we were impressed by one company, who was able to prrof that tehy really understood what we need. Along with their proposal they provided a complete prototype of the software - and this was the matchball for them."

"We are using outsourcing since 2001 - both onshoring and offshoring. The offshoring projects bear a bigger risk to fail and we have much less problems with onshoring providers. Due to the demand of ITIL we describe each process step in every detail. This is a prerequisite for outsourcing in both cases: nearshoring and farshoring. But with offshoring to India, we have to cover the differences in mentality, the communication problems and other related issues and usually calculate an additional 17% of the project costs for German resources used to bridge that gap."

"In India the understanding of hierarchie is completely different. They also tend to hide bad news. In one project they came every week with the message: 'only 5 more days and we will be ready'. Indian employees tend to fetch their superior's agreement even for small decisions and often do not give an opinion - especially not when the superior is around. Also it is difficult for them to say no - even if it would be necessary. To admit a problem is a loss of face for them."

"Our biggest problem in the projects was that the turnover rate at the service provider was too high. Some roles had to be changed twice during the project as the employee changed to a competitor. We learned that some key positions have to be covered at least twice to be successful."

They all had successful projects and complete misses. And they identified a good communication as the factor which makes the difference. This is improtant for both sides. One CIO reported that they once had to recognize that a German project manager in their Saxony department was using a web tool (babelfish) to translate his German text to English. It was nearly impossible for the partner in India to understand what he wanted - and so were the results. Once this German project manager was replaced the project improved a lot.

SELLto.de: B2B Sales Outsourcing
2010-05-17
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