Author: John Harney, Business Writer

What if the New York Times replaced Pulitzer Prize winner Gretchen Morgenson, cited for her “trenchant and incisive Wall Street coverage”, with a writer in India to save four-fifths of her salary? Absurd, you say? Absurd or not, doing so seems to be a developing trend in American newspapers. Though it’s unlikely a writer of Morgenson’s stature would be displaced, the point is: should any journalists covering their well-known beats be replaced by outsourced personnel in other countries who lack feet-on-the-street savvy? Some newspapers seem to think so. And possibly with good reason, as the measure would prevent them from…

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Companies both large and small often choose to outsource their IT departments so they can concentrate on their core businesses. But small and medium businesses (SMBs) have additional challenges. Danya International, a public service company that delivers solutions to government and commercial clients addressing pressing social issues, is a good example. It wanted to focus on its core business, not manage a large IT department. It decided it needed an outsourcing partner that could deploy multiple personnel that would be on site and hands-on. In addition, the SMB was rapidly growing. Some of its key technology components required uptime maintenance…

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Investors buying loan portfolios want to know about the individual loans in them. Law firms do this for their clients. Before outsourcing, Zarski and Associates hired paralegals who often knew nothing about consumer credit law. Now his supplier iBridge has lawyers in Delhi and Banaglore review the portfolios. I can get an Indian lawyer for $35 an hour and a U.S. paralegal for $50 an hour. Guess which one I’ll take? says David Zarski.

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Banco de Crédito del Perú (BCP) faced problems with hardware and software refreshing. To complicate matters, the bank had also adopted desktop technology in an ad hoc manner from numerous vendors over many years. Subsidiaries located in different countries had different business cultures and adopted technology their way. Selecting HP’s Access on Demand helped the bank get a handle on its vast computer inventory.

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One of the toughest problems people in small businesses face in getting a product to market is finding a manufacturer that will run small batches. Ashe Archery overcame this problem by outsourcing its design and manufacturing to Metrotech, a Chinese provider that produces small runs as needed at a substantially lower cost per piece than domestic manufacturers.

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When the government agencies award a contract to IT vendors, they expect them to ramp up staff in a hurry. But carrying staff to potentially service a big contract is as cost-prohibitive as maintaining a large human resources department. That was the challenge for EMCO Technologies, a small Louisiana IT company. It hired Administaff to pick up the HR load so it could land more federal contracts and expand nationally.

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Since installed ERP systems are expensive, complex to deploy, and require dedicated IT resources to maintain, automating mission-critical systems for small manufacturers is a challenge. ProSoap found itself concentrating so much on our servers that we couldn’t get on the phone enough to make sales calls. Outsourcing a hosted ERP solution solved the problem.

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