Maybe Daniel Decatur Emmett will forgive me for “borrowing” some lyrics from his iconic 1850s American folk song, ‘Dixie’. I do this to encourage British business to look further afield for IT outsourcing services, as encouraged by Brexit. The USA and its domestic or onshoring companies represent a great but seldom considered alternative.
Outsource: Joe, thank you very much for joining Outsource today. We always begin interviews by asking for a little bit of an introduction to yourself and your organisation for our readers – so, over to you…
Joe Musacchio: I am the CEO of PeopleTicker. PeopleTicker is a rate and benchmarking tool, we cover salary and contingent labour benchmarking. We basically help companies that want to know how much somebody costs, for projects, individuals, recruitment, sourcing, and procurement.
I can recall being on vacation in Hong Kong with my wife as we were walking through the famous shopping district in Mongkok. Here you can buy Class A imitation goods of leading brands at far lower prices than the real brand and few would ever know the difference. Or, if you are like me, you will negotiate (aka: haggle) for an even better price. As I plied my finely honed negotiating skills on the unsuspecting merchants, the price kept getting lower and lower. My wife would say, “Stop, stop already” and she would eventually walk away in embarrassment.
Sourcing executives today are all about innovation and adding business value: buying smarter to drive business benefits such as increased customer satisfaction, reduced error rates and insights into product design. In other words, procurement operational strategy aspires to demonstrate alignment with factors driving the success of the business, which is more than just cost takeout.
Who could argue with that?
The world of outsourcing is a mysterious place anyway, full of bizarre practice, obscure (even obscurantist) jargon, and technology that is increasingly indistinguishable from magic – yet some parts of our shared folklore take this oddness to a whole new level of spookiness.
Crisis is now an everyday occurrence, and is a risk that can be mitigated but never truly eliminated. In a world that seems to be increasingly prone to crises of every conceivable type, a recent survey from Deloitte – A Crisis of Confidence – finds a broad “vulnerability gap” between the awareness of threats and the preparations to actually handle them.
Throughout the last ten years of my career as part of Capgemini’s BPO unit I have seen digital innovation transform our personal lives exponentially in terms of smartphones, streaming services and access to real-time information updates. The natural consequence is that we now expect the same level of responsiveness, quality and dynamic interaction in our professional lives as we’ve become accustomed to outside of work. This has resulted in a plethora of changes in terms of what is expected from outsourced services
To read the first part of this interview, click here.
O: With all of that in mind, what are the implications for the global business services model? Where do you sit on global business services (GBS)? Are you a fan?
The transition period of bringing a new provider into an environment is critical to the success of an outsourcing initiative. An effective transition sets the stage for a long-term partnership, while a poorly managed one can damage the relationship beyond repair.
The hybrid cloud model is here to stay for the foreseeable future. While a full public cloud infrastructure has worked well for some pure-play digital companies such as Netflix, most enterprises are finding that in spite of the benefit, not all workloads should move to the cloud. In fact, not all workloads can.
One of the most famous figures in the global outsourcing arena, Kate Vitasek is also – not coincidentally – one of Outsource’s most popular contributors, having graced our pages with both her regular column (examining lessons to be learnt by the sourcing and outsourcing community from renowned academics and thought leaders from elsewhere in business) and standalone articles for over five years.
Levels of concern in business appear to be rising, as the date for the roll out of the new EU Data Protection regulations, known as GDPR, was announced (May 25, 2018, by the way). Social media were alight with comment and speculation and many people were questioning if a potential Brexit could impact the uptake of the regulations in the UK. The bottom line is, we have our own Data Protection Act, which will remain and it is not possible to rule out the adoption of best practice guidelines, regardless of any potential Brexit outcome.
The data and cyber regulatory regime in the EU – which includes, for the time being at least, the UK – is undergoing a very significant shake-up. The new General Data Protection Regulation which will come into force on 25 May 2018 will bring a number of new measures into play such as much increased fines (up to the higher of 4% of annual worldwide turnover or 20 million euros, in some cases) and mandatory reporting of most data security breaches.
It seems like there isn’t a day which goes by at the moment without a new robotic invention in the news, with promises around how these inventions will not only revolutionise our lives, but threaten our jobs.
In the outsourcing sector robots are most definitely on the way, or in some cases, already here. And it is, therefore, vital that businesses operating in this sector seriously consider how some robotic processes can enhance their operations – there’s no doubt competitors are also considering the same issue.
Almost twenty years ago, my son responded to the ubiquitous inquiry “What do you want to be when you grow up?” His interlocutor was his Italian godfather (the Milanese not the Sopranos variety). There were certain implicit cultural expectations about the response, the godfather being both a lawyer, an aristocrat and an exceptionally cultured Renaissance-man: doctor, lawyer at one end of the spectrum, bookended by painter, composer at the other with the (yes, stereotypical) accommodation to age and gender of train driver somewhere in-between.