Outsourcing is a major problem for IT job hunters in it field as companies move overseas. Moving overseas isn't the only option for computer-science job hunters. IT Job that's typically safe from outsourcing may be a position that demands solid computer and communication skills, such as an analyst, IT director, or IT manager.
Here is an exert from "Can Outsourcing Actually Create Jobs in the U.S.?" By Michael Schroeder From The Wall Street Journal Online
"While the number of jobs lost outright via outsourcing overseas recently topped 100,000, according to an estimate by Forrester Research, that number is projected to grow to more than a half-million in the next two years and to 1.6 million jobs by 2010.
But for many in the information-technology (IT) and telecommunications industries, the outsourcing of work to other countries is more than an abstract issue. Outsourcing has "gone from something that was rather experimental to the mainstream," says Scot Melland, president and chief executive officer of Dice Inc., a New York online job board for technology professionals. "The impact was first felt in the back office, with help-desk work. Now it has gravitated to programming and design skills. At the same time, at many companies, the ability to outsource is contributing to the growth in job opportunities domestically."
Greg Fellows, chief executive officer of Atlanta-based AGSI Inc., a company that supplies temporary IT labor, agrees. "We're looking at 850,000 skilled jobs in our industry being created in the next four years, and those are jobs here," he says. A recent industry-sponsored study shows that companies sending computer-systems work overseas had higher productivity that actually boosted overall U.S. employment by 90,000 in 2003. The study was commissioned by the Information Technology Association of America and conducted by Global Insight Inc., an economics-consulting firm in Lexington, Mass.
Outsourcing has made life difficult for Jan Walsh, who began work as a Web-site developer for Sabre Holdings Corp. in its Denver office in 2000 when the Southlake, Texas-based travel-reservations concern employed several dozen people in Colorado. "Then we started working with people in Dublin, and several people in our office were laid off," she recalls. "Then they were hiring people in Krakow, Poland, who were doing the same work we were doing, for a fraction of the cost, and most of the rest of us got laid off in late 2002."
After a stint as a special-education paraprofessional for the Denver school district, the 55-year-old Ms. Walsh returned to IT as a full-time contractor conducting quality analysis of travel-reservations software. But she was rocked by how offshoring dramatically altered her career path. "I think it's something we have to do something about," she says. "I'm not a protectionist. But people in manufacturing were retrained to do IT. Now what do we do?"
You could ask Matt Inger. The 29-year-old joined Synygy Inc. early last year as a software developer. Outsourcing low-end code-writing work to India has driven the growth of the Conshohocken, Pa.-based developer and marketer of incentive-compensation software. That, in turn, enabled Mr. Inger to move up to a management position in October as a design architect, heading a team that evaluates the effectiveness of the software offered by Synygy and its competitors.
Mr. Inger interviews and trains software developers whom Synygy hires in India. "I've become a mentor for our developers over there, so there definitely have been opportunities that have opened to me because of offshoring," he says.
Higher Productivity in it job
Marc Hebert says his career has benefited from his company expanding offshore. He's executive vice president of Sierra Atlantic Inc., a Fremont, Calif.-based concern that helps companies install and upgrade so-called enterprise-resource-planning software packages. It employs about 450 workers in India and about 75 in the U.S., with plans to expand to about 800 employees next year -- with about 100 of those employees in the U.S.
Delphi hasn't had to dislocate any of its American software engineers or other IT employees. Many of these highly educated and experienced workers, he says, have moved on to other, "higher value-added" functions that still can be performed only in America. "The engineers here end up doing things like math-based modeling that helps us save on the use of laboratory equipment and other things that we use for actual testing, and it speeds us up."
For IT professionals hoping to ride or at least survive the offshoring wave, experts recommend continually adding skills. Project-management and other management experience will enhance their fit for higher-end IT positions expected to remain on American soil.
"In American business, you have to be your own best advocate," says Maria Schafer, program director of human-capital management for Meta Group, a Stamford, Conn.-based technology-consulting firm. "You have to make sure you have the training you need; you can't rely on an employer to do it for you, because American companies typically don't make huge investments in specialized training."