Thinking About Global Sourcing? 5 Steps that can Bring it all Together
By Maurice Martin President, COO & Founder, iRise Inc. | October 28, 2008
Today's savvy consumers not only compare your brand and your online offerings with your competitors; they compare you against every other site on the Internet. New capabilities are emerging every day on the big consumer sites that the hospitality industry will soon have to emulate.
Hotel brands must produce and maintain an integrated offering that neatly presents all properties and services, while providing a best-in-class user experience. Customers expect that offering to include advanced features: online reservations, loyalty program redemption, local restaurant recommendations, tickets to attractions, smart profiles and much more.
The demands on IT organizations are rising dramatically yet few hoteliers maintain the internal resources to stay competitive on a rapidly changing e-commerce playing field. In fact, many IT budgets remain flat or are in decline, forcing companies to turn to lower cost delivery models like offshore development as a cost-effective way to augment staff. But is this model really viable?
The growth of global outsourcers in the last few years has been nothing short of phenomenal. Yet most of this growth has been focused on taking on maintenance and support functions that could be easily moved offshore. The next wave is offshore application development. Many companies are moving in this direction.
The promise of global sourcing has been faster, cheaper development capabilities without sacrificing innovation or quality. Sounds great, right? We can get four times the work done for the same cost. Unfortunately, the expected savings can be slow to realize - if they materialize at all. Dealing with time zone, language and cultural barriers can bring even the most organized project teams to a halt. Moreover, communicating what the end product should look like, and the requirements therein, contribute greatly to missed expectations.