Readers respond to Lisa Vaas' recent column on offshore outsourcing.
In Lisa Vaas column, Perils of Going Offshore, she details the conundrum of the tech industry:
loss of little over a half-a-million tech jobs, more companies
outsourcing their tech departments and the inability of many
people to find jobs in the field.
The notion that government must "protect" the industry is a
dangerous one. This will foster a system where weak performers are
protected. Who wants that? Strong performers know that their tech
skills must be continuously honed and developed, through formal
classes, self-teaching and on-the-job training. They also know
that certs alone mean little. Strong performers know that spamming
companies with resumes (a la Bernard Shifman), responding to
classified ads, or using one of the "job sites" is a lose-lose
proposition. Strong performers know that they get a job when they
can prove to an employer that they can provide value to that
The heyday of the late 90s caused many people who were not serious
about growing their skills and remaining competitive to enter the
market. Why not? You take one of those
guaranteed-passing-score classes, sit for the MCSE, and then make
$50k per year. Fortunately, those days are over, and good
riddance, too. People with a paper and no experience who expect
the world to lay riches at their feet are hopefully going to go
find some other industry to play in. IT workers who dont
continuously update their skills and remain highly flexible when it
comes to employment and compensation are going to be in for a rude
shock when their positions are outsourced to a foreign company that
can provide the same value for a fraction of the price.
The bottom line is that people provide value, organizations hire
people who can provide value, and a paper cert alone does not
On the other hand, companies that still refuse to see tech as a
strategic asset and instead look at IT as "cost center" are
aging dinosaurs ripe for losing serious market share to
more flexible companies that understand the value of
technology. A company that uses tech to streamline the supply
chain can handle many more orders for much less cost than a
lumbering, inefficient and traditional operation. This brings us
back to the protection issue again. If the government
"protects" industry by preventing the companies that outsource a
core strategic asset like tech, then those companies will not fail
as fast as the market would have them.
Our system is one of capitalism, yet there are those who would
destroy the system by introducing additional corporate welfarism.
Let those who have the skills and knowledge thrive; dont give
those who cant or wont do what it takes to make it in todays
environment a "fair shake" because they cant be bothered to run
their business as if it must make a profit.