Sunday, May 22, 2005

Eastern Europe rising as destination for IT outsourcing

When offshore outsourcing of IT is mentioned, certain countries such as India and the Philippines come to mind. But a number of other locales are building such capabilities, specifically eastern Europe. I've mentioned Romania in the past, after reading Tony Radford's blog, which unfortunately seems to have gone dark since January.

Then in March, a Romanian blogger, Adrian Pintilie, contacted me about the growing offshore outsourcing services market in Romania. At the time, he didn't have much of a story to tell. But since then, he has conducted a survey and has collected some detailed metrics on Romanian service providers and hourly rates.

The firms that Adrian surveyed seem quite small, all of them being under 100 employees, but I suspect that's because those are the firms that he got to respond to his survey. On the other hand, according to this article in the International Herald Tribune, the Romanian outsourcing sector is in fact dominated by small firms. Romania does not have the huge universities, as found in India, pumping out thousands of IT grads each year. So, Romania will probably be a better choice for small, focused development projects rather than massive business process outsourcing operations.

Still, as Adrian points out on his blog, there have been a number of Romanian outsourcing firms acquired recently by multinationals, such as Siemens. Obviously they must know a good thing when they see it. And labor rates are still attractive. According to the Tribune article, programming costs in Romania are actually less than in China. If so, then they're certainly less than India's.

Related posts
New blog on offshore outsourcing (re: Tony Radford's blog)
Risks of offshore outsourcing
India losing its cost advantage

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