Outsourcing and offshoring are two of the most common buzzwords of the 21st century business world — and outsourcing IT is one the most common practices amongst businesses large and small in the digital age. However, when it comes to having someone else take over your IT, are you outsourcing, or are you offshoring it?
If you’re considering the switch to outsourcing your IT needs, then there are a few key differences you need to understand between outsourcing and offshoring.
Similar Names — But Aren’t the Same
The main difference between outsourcing or offshoring IT is the strategy by which you want to get the job done.
Traditionally, outsourcing is handing off work or business functions to another, 3rd party vendor, within the country or relatively close proximity. Outsourcing is what most companies tend to do to improve their bottom line while maintaining core business functions like IT. An example of this would be your business outsourcing your IT to a local company like NENs, who steps in as a third party to manage that aspect of your business for you.
Offshoring is something a bit different, and doesn’t usually include a 3rd party vendor. Offshoring is moving part of a business to an overseas location, usually in a country where there would be economic advantage to have functions moved to, where there may be an added level of expertise for a given business function. An example of this would be a company moving one of its factories to India to take advantage of a lower-cost but skilled workforce.
So, What Should I Outsource? What Should I Offshore?
If you’re a larger company looking to physically move some massive factories to cheaper locations, then offshoring may be the answer you’re looking for. You’ll keep everything under one company umbrella, and become a global organization.
However, if you’re a smaller company just looking for some assistance or to gain an edge in the market, outsourcing is the way to go. When you outsource a business function like IT, you’re taking that stress off the plate of your management team, and potentially even gaining new technological advances for your company like increased cybersecurity or reliable disaster recovery — without ever leaving the county.
It’s All About Location
Whether you’re looking to outsource just a single aspect of your IT or the whole IT atmosphere of your organization, location comes into play.
When you offshore, you’re moving part of your business overseas. This means differences in time zones, massive travel to meet face-to-face, and potential language barriers that can get in the way of fixing even the simplest IT solutions.
Outsourcing, however, is best handled by a local IT provider. Although your IT may be handled by a third party when you outsource, partnering with a local provider like NENs means you can have easy access to the expert team handling your IT needs — and they’ll be up at the same hours you are.