By Javad Ahmad, COO of Smart IS International
American businesses have been outsourcing and offshoring tasks and processes for decades. However, what was once a set of disjointed teams, with ‘low level’, ‘tactical’ tasks and activities thrown over the fence to be completed by the offshore workforce, has now evolved into blended and collaborative teams, jointly working on ‘strategic’ projects with common goals. It is no longer a simple case of cost-management. Instead, it is about scalability, efficiency, and most importantly, access to the global talent pool with diverse experiences.
With the general shortage of IT Professionals in the United States and a continuously increasing demand for IT systems across the business spectrum, more and more American based organizations are forming partnerships with offshore service providers.
The offshore providers employ a complete spectrum of project roles, who are working side-by-side with their onshore counterparts. This work-style and general adoption of agile methodologies in most IT teams, has made ‘effective communication’ and ‘good project governance’ a necessary component of setting up offshore teams.
So, are all offshore providers equal?
Can all offshore teams produce equal results? What differentiates the ‘good’ and the ‘not-so-good’ offshore teams? Even the best of teams will fail if they cannot appreciate and understand the underlying business case. More importantly, they will fail to develop a direct understanding of the use-cases and usability scenarios/challenges. Indeed, even many onsite project teams fail to deliver on-target results when they fail to engage with the end-user and do not address the core business issues.
Therefore, it becomes even more critical for offshore teams to figure out a way to directly engage with the business processes and the end-user. A good onshore team that is fully integrated with the offshore team, forming a full-service onsite/off-shore delivery model, makes up the secret ingredient of a valuable and sustainable offshore model.
For the last five years, Oracular has been doing just that! Oracular has been working with our offshore team (Smart IS) to develop a full service onsite/off-shore model. Together, we have developed blended teams and standard operating procedures; with a focus on delivering on-target and on-budget, quality results. As a result, Oracular can offer our customers, a full-service, scalable team with a thorough understanding of US-based businesses and business processes.
Reducing Risk and Adding Value:
Oracular’s onsite team consists of Project Managers, Business Analysts, Solution Architects, and all the key resources needed for a project to be successful. Our off-shore team consists of the same key resources — all of which work closely with their counterparts at the Oshkosh office to develop solutions that best fit our clients’ needs.
The offshore delivery managers are not only trained in the US but also have extensive US-based work experience. Moreover, the US-based team members routinely travel to the offshore office to ensure that the offshore team fully understands and appreciates the specific needs of the US-based end-users. All Oracular projects are initialized onsite with onshore teams, ensuring a direct engagement with the project stakeholders. Similarly, all deployments and user hand-offs are completed with the onsite teams. This extra effort enables solid communication between teams, minimizing the risk of information loss, or misunderstood requirements. With team members from both offices working together, our clients get innovative solutions, and on-target delivery, along with, minimum risks of delays caused by re-work.
A full-service off-shore set up allows for an ideal customer service experience for our clients. The Oracular experience does not end with project deployment; instead, the affordable cost structure, coupled with certified and scalable teams, allows for a 24 x 7 Support and Managed Services engagements. This enables our clients to improve user acceptance and satisfaction, as well as continue to scale the projects to their evolving business needs.