Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Why IT is perfect for offshoring/inshoring

I don't think I could invent any type of work that is more perfect for
offshoring/inshoring than IT.

1) Unlike manufacturing, you don't have to mess with physical inventory. This is
huge. Shipping costs, and other supply chain costs, can be very substantial.
With IT, everything is done over the internet. Perfect for offshoring.

2) Unlike manufacturing, you don't have to worry about special plants, or
special equipment, special environmental regulations, or worker safety issues.
Just use ordinary computers, and ordinary office space. Dealing with foreign
regulations for building permits, and the like can be a nightmare. With IT, you
don't have to bother with any that. Just rent space in an existing building.
Even if you build your own building, you don't have to bother with all the
special issues that go with manufacturing.

3) Unlike health care, or other fields, you don't have to bother with sort of
special education, or licensing requirements. For example, we can import nurses
from Mexico, they would not be qualified. Health care licensing is regulated by
the state. Nothing like that to worry about with IT, legally, practically
anybody can do practically anything.

4) No unions to fuss with. Replace all the IT workers you want with visa
workers, then send the entire department offshore. No need to worry about union
pushback.

5) No standardization in IT. You can always tell the government there is a
shortage of qualified workers, since there is absolutely no definition of what
is "qualified." You have a virtual carte blanche to make up any kind of
statistics about salaries, or qualification. For example, you could look for
workers with an arbitrary list of experience requirements, and when you don't
find them, use that as an excuse to hire offshore workers with no experience,
and just a liberal arts degree.

6) US IT workers are not represented by any professional organization, and
therefore have no voice in congress. Dump on IT workers all you want, what's to
stop you?

7) Due to massive corporate propaganda, it is widely believed there is a
shortage of qualified US IT workers, so nobody will blame you for going
offshore. There was significant public outcry in the 1980s when manufacturing
was moved offshore. Michael Moore even created a movie, and Billy Joel wrote a
song. Nobody cares about spoiled IT workers.

8) You can point to contributions made by actual immigrants, and then prentend
that H1Bs are actual immigrants. Great PR.

9) You can place the race card. You can say that anybody critical of replacing
US workers with offshore is a racist, bigoted, and xenophobic; and thereby,
immediately quash any dissention.

10) US IT workers are too spineless, selfish, arrogant, and disorganized, to put
up any sort of meaningful resistance to your offshoring plans. Take your time,
when you start importing visa workers, only the workers who are directly
affected will care. The guy in the next cubical won't care until his head is on
the chopping block. US IT workers have a special trick of sticking their noses
in the air, and their heads in the sand. US IT workers will say: "they could
never do without me. I'm much too valuable. Only the poorly qualified lose their
jobs." Dumping on US IT workers is like shooting fish in a barrel.

11) Significant saving. US IT workers can be quite expensive.

12) Indentured servant status is even more important for IT workers, than other
workers. Everybody's information system setup is different, so it takes a while
for IT workers to learn their jobs. US workers can quit just after they get up
to speed. Which means you are training people for their next job. Worse yet,
they can take what they have learned (on your dime) to your competitors. With
visa workers, they have to stay with you for six years, then you can send them
to your offshore operations.

12) Most IT workers don't work directly with the public, so unlike helpdesk
stuff, you don't have to worry about complaints about accents, or anything like
that.

13) Most of the work can easily be done offshore, and you don't have to be a big
employer to take advantage of it. I cannot hire a plummer for $2 an hour, but I
can go on rentacoder and hire a web-developer for that.

14) Technologies like romoting in, and video confrencing get better all the
time.