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InfoQ Homepage Presentations Collaboration Over Contracts in Agile “Offshore” Outsourced Development

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Collaboration Over Contracts in Agile “Offshore” Outsourced Development

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Bio

Craig Larman is a management and organizational-design consultant for enterprise adoptions and large-scale product delivery with Lean principles and large-scale Scrum. He is the co-author of Scaling Lean & Agile Development: Thinking & Organizational Tools, and Practices for Scaling Lean & Agile Development: Large, Multisite, & Offshore Product Development with Large-Scale Scrum.

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QCon is a conference that is organized by the community, for the community.The result is a high quality conference experience where a tremendous amount of attention and investment has gone into having the best content on the most important topics presented by the leaders in our community.QCon is designed with the technical depth and enterprise focus of interest to technical team leads, architects, and project managers.

Recorded at:

Jun 16, 2011

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Community comments

  • Onshore and Offshore interactions

    by planet jones /

  • How about On-Shoring.

    by Jeff Winston /

    • Re: How about On-Shoring.

      by Christopher Churchill /

      • Onshore and Offshore interactions

        by planet jones /

        Your message is awaiting moderation. Thank you for participating in the discussion.

        A brilliantly insightful talk, which has given me some new knowledge and solidified some of my existing knowledge.

        I'm curious about the onshore and offshore interactions. I can't agree more that CMMI is a nonsense measure when it comes to measuring whether the software will meet the product owners needs and will it be maintainable through the years. You state the code should be looked at early and often. I agree too. However, is this review by onshore team members? That usually works well initially (if your onshore reviewers are genuinely good at their job).

        However, if the offshore model persists the onshore folk begin to lose the skill and up-to-date'ness' to do this job effectively. Sure folk can look at InfoQ and read up elsewhere, but there's no compensation for learning through solving the problems yourself. How do you see this developing with clients, both now and in the future? Will onshore technical teams lose their relevance? (and jobs!) Or should companies ensure there is always a balance - both reviewing, collaborating and producing?

      • How about On-Shoring.

        by Jeff Winston /

        Your message is awaiting moderation. Thank you for participating in the discussion.

        I just started a Health Informatics company that develops SaaS for hospitals.
        I get calls all the time about off-shore the work to India.
        My response is this. We ONLY do on-shore.

        What you don't realize, or, maybe you do, but, just don't care Mr. Larman. Is that you are being instrumental in assisting the erosion of the high tech work force here in America.
        I have kids in college going for an MSCS. What are they going to do when they graduate.
        Flip burgers or something.

        The Indians don't care. They work for strengthening the infrastructure of their own hi-tech work force. I would do the same. But. They(Indians) have their kids to look out for. And we(Americans)
        have our kids to look out for.

        You are helping India systematically dismantle the American high tech work force which
        was built on the shoulders of people like Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, and Scott McNeally.

        So. Mr. Larman. Why not do a similar piece about the benefits of on-shoring.

      • Re: How about On-Shoring.

        by Christopher Churchill /

        Your message is awaiting moderation. Thank you for participating in the discussion.

        Mr. Jeff,
        You first start to work 16 hours a day instead of working 9 to 5, stop asking for 6 digit salaries, stop having ridiculous amount of ego, stay in a company for atleast 5 years instead of jumping ship every 6 months, Attend support calls while at home instead of going out with your girlfriend, have a solid and affordable education infrastructure, have kids learn math and science instead of drugs and coccaine - and then we (corporations) might actually think about it.

        If protectionism is your forte, then will you accept India stopping their trade relations to the US? You wont have a SHIRT TO WEAR and your stores will not sell a thing!! The US has stopped manufacturing tangible goods long time back!!

        All the best for your company - we can see where it is going already. Business profitability is not your objective and hence share holders will never invest in you.

        Moderator if you do not ban these kinds of racist comments, there will be uncalled for replies like this. We do not want the H1B rants and Indian racist dudes here. Take it elsewhere.

      • Re: How about On-Shoring.

        by Jeff Winston /

        Your message is awaiting moderation. Thank you for participating in the discussion.

        This is not about Race. This is about country. DUDE. Get that through your thick head. This is about our, meaning, US Kids. I'm looking out for ME county. DUDE. This has nothing to do with race. Protectionism. All over Europe. They have been involved in what you call protectionism for decades.
        Its simple. If you want to live and work in Germany for instance. If there is a shortage of jobs in the profession in which a non-German citizen wants to work. You can't get a job in that industry. The non German individual will have to find another form of gainful employment. I guess that is racist to.

        As far as clothes. All that stuff is coming from China. I don't know what shrub you've have been smoking. But. Get off the pipe.

        Giving our jobs out to overseas allies seems like a fashionable thing to do.
        Math and science. Don't make me laugh. Both my kids are sporting a 3.90 GPA at NYU.
        And, I'll go toe to toe with you with any high order math you want.

        And. Stop generalizing about American developers being flakes at work.
        In closing this is NOT ABOUT RACE. Its about my Country. America.

        Capise'

      • Re: How about On-Shoring.

        by Jeff Winston /

        Your message is awaiting moderation. Thank you for participating in the discussion.

        My main point about all this is. Mr. Larman wants to extol the virtues of offshore development.
        I want to see him to a corresponding piece, illustrating the benefits of on-shore development.
        And. By the way. Christopher. I employ people of Indian descent at my company. The difference is.
        They are American Citizens. They live in America, they pay taxes, and own homes, here in America. like the rest of us Americans.

        Am I making myself clear Christopher

      • Re: How about On-Shoring.

        by Christopher Churchill /

        Your message is awaiting moderation. Thank you for participating in the discussion.

        "Its about my Country. America." - Your country? Are you a native Indian? Dude - You yourself are an immigrant - what are you trying to protectionize this country for? What America is doing now is the American dream - we will go to any level to hire the best talent possible - and "best talent" can mean soo many things - cheaper, functional, slightly incompetent etc. The last word is that - businesses need to be profitable.

        "As far as clothes. All that stuff is coming from China." -
        Look at all the shirts that you buy in walmart and see what's written on those collars. I know you are weak in math, but now it looks like you have been smoking some one's shit as well eh? OH SO LET ME GET THIS STRAIGHT - If United States is increasing their offshore presence in China (which they will eventually, the day is not far) and we get a di*k head like you saying no offshoring to Chinese, and if Chinese stops their trade relations with you - do you think Walmart will sell anything?

        "Giving our jobs out to overseas allies seems like a fashionable thing to do.
        Math and science. Don't make me laugh. Both my kids are sporting a 3.90 GPA at NYU." -
        If "our" US kids do as good as the Indians and ask for lesser competitive salaries and learn the offshore language, I am sure employers will want to hire you. The problem is the high tech American programmers are few and far between. What we have is a steaming pile of B.S. that employers find very difficult to work with.

        The bottom line Jeff - your kids will still have a job in the high tech industry - I am sure they will. There is no doubt about it. Indians can NEVER match the creative skills of Americans. You think and the Indians implement. The trend has changed in a way in which creative minds and innovative ideas combined with technical excellence will fetch higher salaries at work.

        But offshore is not going to go away man. Offshore will continue to exist and will be an integral part of our life. You have to accept that fact Jeff and you have to co-exist in a distributed race/immigration status culture at work. If you can't do that, your employability is going for a huge toss.

        Also do not talk specifically about Indians like this. Your "Indians replacing US jobs" in discussion forums and the 911 issue (where Americans think Indians are those terrorists) has made all the Indian lives miserable in the USA. We need to treat everyone with equal respect. You also need to understand that not ALL Indians are replacing US jobs, there are certain Indians who work in Google on H1B visas that are truly high end talent - the kind that you can't find in the USA. Those people are also affected which is not fair. The Afro Americans have a picture next to an American in a TV advertisement. The brown man needs to also be in that picture - because he is such an integral part of USA in the future and beyond.

        "In closing this is NOT ABOUT RACE. Its about my Country. America." - Again - it is not YOUR country.

        Finally - my closing statement is - Will you buy a T-Shirt for 5 or for 75 quid? The business does not care if the developer had 25 if conditions instead of a single switch case. All that they care is that the product works and delivers business value.

      • Re: How about On-Shoring.

        by Calen Legaspi /

        Your message is awaiting moderation. Thank you for participating in the discussion.

        Ok, I have to admit that offshoring is not good news to the American developer, just like the eruption of Vesuvius was not good news to the inhabitants of Pompeii. Unfortunately, no one can stop the overwhelming economic forces of globalization and the internet any more than anyone can stop the geological force of a volcano.

        Jeff, it's great that your kids are taking MSCS. That's the right way to go - compete. If the other side is cheaper, then one has to better, to paraphrase Michael Porter.

        If American companies do not offshore, they will lose to companies in Canada, Europe, Japan, Korea, Australia and New Zealand that do.

        Calen

      • Outsource Only to Vendors that Don't Need to Be Coached

        by Calen Legaspi /

        Your message is awaiting moderation. Thank you for participating in the discussion.

        I don't see the point of coaching your vendor on Agile and code quality. If the point is saving money and the time of your internal developers is precious, then you're wasting a lot of money having your internal developers coaching the vendor's developers.

        I think you save more money by hiring a vendor that ALREADY knows Agile and code quality at around the same level as your internal team. These guys probably charge twice what other outsourcing vendors charge, but it more than pays off in terms of less handholding time from your internal devs and faster velocity. There aren't too many outsourcing shops that are at this level but they exist.

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