When thinking about IT outsourcing, quite often they recommend looking at Non-Core
Technologies as opposed to Core Technologies.
When thinking about Business Process Outsourcing, they recommend that you look at
outsourcing Non-Core Business Processes as opposed to Core Business Processes.
I think this distinction does not help too much. That is, if you want the outsourced
or offshored effort to be successful in the long run!
There are some IT projects – both development and support that cannot be outsourced
or offshored if the outsourcing services vendor is removed physically from the businesses
that need the service! There are some software development efforts that require constant
interactions that may not work remotely. Software Development connected to online presences of
any business is a good example. Requirements for the software change often and fast due to what
competitors do and this requires face to face interaction quickly if you want to get
the software done in time and rolled out.
Remote IT Monitoring is easy but maintenance when physical devices are involved is hard. And coordinating remote monitoring with physical maintenance is doubly hard since sometimes it pays to just go to the site and fix the problem after looking at it remotely.
Some business processes require local knowledge and cannot be done remotely. Roadside
assistance processes are good examples. When your car has broken down on highway 101, you need
someone on the phone who has probably gone up and down that highway at least a couple of times
and understands landmarks, locations etc. They can be located 25 miles away but still better
than someone 3000 miles away!
Using this yeardstick may mean that some Core IT responsibilities may be good candidates for
Outsourcing or offshoring while some non-core ones may not suitable!
Same applies to Business processes also.
So before we think core vs. non-core, it may pay to also think distance and how it affects
what you are considering for outsourcing!
Everywhere is walking distance if you have the time.