The dark ages of offshoring

A recently released Gartner report identified Australia as one of the countries that has the potential to capitalize on the global offshore business process outsourcing (BPO) market. The window of opportunity is slated for the next three years and how well Australia can leverage an integrated strategy to make it work is yet to be seen.

The newly elected federal government has already expressed its interest in offshoring. It is keenly eyeing opportunities for IT savings across the entire public sector, promoting greater use of offshoring by government departments.

According to IT Minister Helen Coonan, those who oppose offshoring, are living in the dark ages.

But what is being done to make Australia an attractive offshoring destination?

Gartner claims India is likely to lose its current 80 percent stranglehold on the BPO market, this share dropping to about 55 percent by 2007.

The report notes that no single country will challenge India but it will be whittled away by a number of countries which together will account for 45 percent of this market by 2007.

All that is required to win BPO business is English-speaking employees with a basic education, which Australia has in abundance. India earned about $US2.3 billion from BPO services last year but it is set to reach $27 billion in the next few years.

Who is Australia competing against? South Africa, Fiji, Mauritius, the Philippines, New Zealand and China.

Although some of these countries, like the Philippines, have obvious hurdles to overcome, the government is extremely proactive. So what about it Minister are you ready to take us out of the dark ages?

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