Are You Sure You Want To Offshore Your DBA Support?
Without your database functioning in today’s information world, you are out of business. The information stored in your databases is one of the most important business assets you have. I am amazed at how many times people tell me that database administration is a commodity and should go out to the cheapest bidder. I would not be so quick to hand over one of my most valuable business assets to the cheapest bidder.
There are a number of reasons people choose to outsource Database Administration services, which include:
• Cost Savings
• Prevent Internal Staff Burnout
• Predictable Monthly Cost
In Todays Tough Economic Times
When you consider the fact you can outsource your database administration and save an immediate 40+ percent over bringing in a Full Time Equivalent (FTE) database administrator, it’s a very powerful immediate return on investment. For less than 2 months of an outside database consultant, you can have a year of outsourcing of your database administration needs.
To Offshore Or Not To Offshore
If you are in the camp that database administration is just a commodity, then it does not matter where it comes from as long as it’s the lowest bidder. I am not in that camp. I feel that the database is one of the most important assets a company has and deserves a higher level of care. The question is if you should offshore or not.
Today, I saw this article from Business Week.
China Losing Luster with U.S. Manufacturers
A new survey finds rising worries about product quality and intellectual-property theft. More U.S. companies are looking to Mexico and their own backyard
Two years of disastrous quality-control breakdowns, from foul fish and lead-tainted toys to poisoned drugs and dairy products, are taking their toll on China’s allure as a manufacturing platform. A new study by supply-chain consulting firm AMR Research found that quality concerns are among the chief reasons U.S. manufacturers are scaling back plans to source more goods from China.
Instead, U.S. companies are looking harder at Mexico and other locales closer to home when exploring where to put new capacity. The findings are based on a survey of 130 U.S. manufacturers, ranging from producers of drugs (BusinessWeek, 9/4/08) and computers to auto parts. The survey, completed in mid-October, found a sharp swing in attitudes toward China since May, when AMR conducted a similar study.
The reasons for the shift suggest serious problems for China’s export machine that go far beyond the concerns over rising costs for wages, shipping, and materials that got a lot of attention earlier this year.
To read the entire story in Business Week…..
When I read this article, this sentence catches my attention:
“Two years of disastrous quality-control breakdowns, from foul fish and lead-tainted toys to poisoned drugs and dairy products, are taking their toll on China’s allure….”
Poison Drugs & Dairy products. When you offshore, make sure you understand the culture and value of the people you are working offshoring too. Let me say this again. Poison Drugs & Dairy products. When you offshore, make sure you understand the culture and value of the people you are offshoring too.
“Quality-control breakdowns”. To me Quality is one of the top criteria in choosing the right vendor to outsource your database administration too.
The Other item that quickly caught my attention:
“A new survey finds rising worries about product quality and intellectual-property theft.”
I understand the allure of taking advantage of the cost differences in wages around the world and using that advantage to help your company be more competitive. When you outsource to another part of the world make sure…
• Your corporate secrets are protected
• You have legal recourse if a problem arises
• The country culture has a value system that will not cause your company harm. You don’t want to be provided with poisonous drugs if you are a drug company. You don’t want to be provided with contaminated milk, if you are a milk producer.
The country Infrastructure can support your business
In the United States we are blessed with an incredible infrastructure for doing business. We have a national highway system that makes it easy to transport goods and services. It is not commonplace to have electrical brownouts or Internet outages. If you offshore, make sure the country you offshore too, can provide you an infrastructure that can adequately support your companies needs.
Here is an article that talked about a substantial amount of Internet Bandwidth being disrupted recently…
Getting Around Power ~ by Manju Dubey
Imagine the same power outage in India, but with the boiling Indian summer heat. Its 9:00am and you are ready to go to the office and there’s a power cut (outage) immediately heads roll ….. if the generator does not start whirring in a minute and the UPS or inverter does not start functioning immediately, then the generator attendant will lose his job. If you call up the local company bijliwallah (power company) the standard reply is “don’t know when the supply will resume”. If people hammer out the same question again and again the power company will put the receiver off the hook. End of Power struggle.
To read the entire article….
Although by the 1990s India had increased its installed electricity generation capacity over the previous 40 years fifty times, from 1,500 MW to 80,000 MW, serious problems beset the power sector. In particular, the quality and reliability of supply was poor, India suffered widespread power outages, there were significant fluctuations in supply voltage and frequency and grid disturbances. Shortages in power were made worse by high transmission and distribution losses. The problems were caused by many factors. Underinvestment in transmission and distribution networks, poor capacity utilisation, inadequate billing, poor metering, irrational tariff structures, stolen power supply, the poor financial health of the state electricity boards and slow generation project implementation were the primary difficulties. By the 1990s only 55% of total electricity generated was billed and a mere 40% was actually paid for. The retail price of electricity represented less than 75% of the real average generation cost.
I dont pretend to understand what the real infastructure is around the world, I do know that before you outsource somewhere understand what the risk factors are.
Is the Vendor You Are Outsourcing To the Real Vendor?
I get calls every week from offshore vendors that want to provide me people at a lower costs and will private label them too me. When you outsource to a vendor, make sure you know who is actually doing the work.
It’s really hard to ensure good quality when its being handle by a third party. If I were going to offshore, I would only consider companies that are providing you there own people located offshore. Then look at the country and make sure the infrastructure and legal system & Political system in place will protect your organization when a problem arises.
How stable in the country?
if you are outsourcing a critical business function offshore, will it be there when you need it. When I see things like this, I wonder…..
Indian Official: Siege at Taj Hotel Over
More than 150 people were killed and several hundred wounded in the violence that started when more than a dozen assailants attacked 10 sites across Mumbai Wednesday night. Fifteen foreigners were among the dead.
“The Taj operation is over. The last two terrorists holed up there have been killed,” Mumbai Police Chief Hasan Ghafoor told The Associated Press. J.K. Dutt, director general of India’s elite National Security Guard commando unit, told reporters outside the hotel that his forces would continue to search and clear the hotel.
With the end of one of the most brazen terror attacks in India’s history, attention turned from the military operation to questions of who was behind the attack and the heavy toll on human life.
As fighting stretched into a fourth day Saturday, the Taj Mahal hotel was wracked by hours of intermittent gunfire and explosions, even though authorities said earlier they cleared it of gunmen.
Indian forces launched grenades and traded gunfire with what authorities believed was one or two militants holed up in the ballroom. What appeared to be a black-clad figure toppled from a first-floor window, but further details were unavailable.
Authorities were working to find out who was behind the attacks, claimed by a previously unknown group calling itself the Deccan Mujahideen.
To read the entire article…..
What happened here was terrible. I am so sorry for the families. The question you have to be able to answer. Will the country where these peope are located provide you a stable environment so that when your business needs them, they will be there
The Answer To the Question….
Only you can decide what is right for your business. In today’s economic times, companies need to find ways to cut costs without impacting strategic business initiatives. Remote Database Administration represents an way your company can cut costs today. Make sure you understand who is really providing the service, what their commitment to quality is. If they are an offshore operation, what are the risks factors associated with offshore operation? Then make a decision that is best for your business.
Posted Michael Corey,
Founder & CEO, Ntirety