An Easy Out: Corporate America’s Addiction to Outsourcing

Monday, October 29, 2007

easy.jpgBy Jack Buffington

Outsourcing is as controversial as ever in today’s globalized world. But for all the noise about it in the media, whether reflecting the perspectives of labor, business, consultants, academics, employees, or protestors, there is far more emotion surrounding the benefits and drawbacks of the trend than there is common sense. Not only are these messages from different constituents polarizing, they are also confusing because they muddy the waters regarding corporate performance. Buffington clarifies the role of outsourcing in business today so that Americans can focus on something that really matters–real increases in productivity and competitiveness in a global economy. In most cases, he contends, neither outsourcing nor its close cousin, offshoring, are effective as a means to their intended end. Moreover, he points out, Americans focus a lot of negative energy on offshoring, not realizing that domestic outsourcing might be more harmful to our economy in the long run. Corporations lack awareness of this distinction, according to Buffington, and therefore they don’t know which should be implemented in what circumstances. That ignorance is not only an obstacle for any company seeking to implement a successful outsourcing strategy, but it is also a dire threat to the long-term growth of the American economy. (Description from Call number: HD2365 .B84 2007

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