Outsourcing… This word commonly brings to mind the idea of off shoring work to places like India, China, Philippines, etc… But it can also simply mean having part of your companies work done by an outside organization. Many companies outsource their cleaning or their payroll without even thinking about it. They do this to save money and rely on an expert.
When outsourcing for cost control while ensuring expert help, one emerging trend to consider is called Rural Sourcing. What is rural sourcing? It’s a simple concept; instead of sending work off shore, you send it into the middle of the country where costs are lower. In this recent article, you will note that for example Lincoln, NE was listed as having one of the lowest IT talent costs, compared with larger coastal cities. Now one may consider that bottom tier listing to cast a shadow on the quality of IT talent, however, the Midwest in general has a lower cost of living compared to the coasts, which does not require an enormous salary, and instead allows for an affordable, yet high caliber IT staff.
In addition to affordable personnel, other things such as office space, as well as certain utilities are also more affordable; combine all of that with a staff that are native English speakers, living in the US in a time zone that is no more than 2 hours different than either coast and it makes working with rural sourcing partners much easier than off shore partners.
Rural Sourcing is not just the small towns in South Dakota or Kansas. It can also include reasonable size metropolitan areas with strong fiber optic networks such as Omaha, NE. We at Priority Data are proud to call Omaha our home. As we look around our community we see call centers, data centers, software development shops, etc. that do business with national companies. We are all taking advantage of the lower cost and great connectivity so we can serve customers around the country, all while getting the same work quality.
Outsourcing sometimes has a bad name because of time zones issues, language barriers, security concerns, and even political concern over sending American jobs overseas. It is more than off-shoring though and many companies can benefit from outsourcing parts of their business. Rural sourcing will provide cost savings and improved efficiency while minimizing many of the negative impacts of off-shoring.