Rare Legal and Business Insight into Offshore Countries and Regions

Rare Legal and Business Insight into Offshore Countries and Regions describes Baker & McKenzie’s excellent webcasts focused on offshore business.

Depending on your business strategy, it may make sense to explore offshoring to several regions of the world to mitigate the risk that your partner might be affected by natural disasters or political upheaval. In fact, many offshore experts recommend a portfolio strategy for risk mitigation or operational effectiveness (follow the sun operations can reduce time to market) while meeting cost objectives.

One reliable source for country information that I can recommend is Baker & McKenzie’s Global Sourcing: Destination webinar series in which they partner with neoIT, the global outsourcing consultancy. neoIT gives a business climate summary of the country or region, which is followed by Baker attorneys from the region who present nuts and bolts legal issues of offshoring. These webinars are led by Mike Mensik in Chicago, and they are roughly 60 minutes long. I have been impressed by neoIT’s presentations and with the attorneys’ consistent presentations of key issues in a time-compressed format. Obviously, any and all are available for follow-up questions.

Baker has gone the extra mile and archived the audio and slides, so you can catch some that you may have missed. Countries and regions in 2005 have been: Canada, Central Europe (Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland), China, Malaysia, Latin America (Brasil, Mexico, Argentina focus) and The Philippines. 2006 has slated: Singapore, Russia and Costa Rica.

Access their site here.

It’s important to keep in mind that, on a basic level, “western” countries are clients, and the technology and globalization trends that are enabling (more) seamless outsourcing globally are hitting these regions simultaneously. It is terrifically competitive, and their competitive advantages are fluid. For executives making outsourcing decisions, it will be crucial to monitor value propositions by each region—continuously. Also, I am predicting a shift away from “outsourcing as cost takeout” to “outsourcing as capability acquisition” within the next five years ±2. In other words, I predict that the primary motivator will change from cost savings to accessing capabilities that the companies cannot develop at home (more on this later). As in any competitive market, each region is attempting to create durable competitive advantage: after all, having educated people work for low wages is not a durable business plan, and they all realize it. This will remain a very dynamic market for the foreseeable future.

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