Is India To Blame For The Jobless Recovery?
from the missing-the-point dept
It's becoming increasingly popular among techies to bash Indian outsourcing. We've discussed this before, but two articles were submitted this morning by different people, and you can sense that the rhetoric is getting worse. The anger is misdirected and if it continues, it will end up costing the American economy more jobs than it saves. First, we have John who submitted a story out of Australia saying that India is to blame for the so-called "jobless recovery" of the American economy. Then, Kevin K aka EMC Guy submitted the story about how techie jobs are "booming" in India, which reads like an article talking about engineers in Silicon Valley four years ago (ah... how quickly things change). Both were submitted suggesting that this is bad and that somehow these jobs were being "stolen" from American workers. First, this is clearly a problem for American techies. Too often, they find themselves in the position of competing against someone who takes only 1/6 their salary. However, blaming India or the US government doesn't help. It makes the problem worse. If the US started focusing on protectionist policies that forced American companies to keep the jobs here, we would, in many cases, become uncompetitive. The American companies would end up failing - and all of those people would be out of work anyways. That does not help solve the problem of helping to find new jobs for American techies. I think the rush towards outsourcing is overhyped. Many companies are going to realize that there are serious additional costs in offshoring such a large percentage of their workforce in certain cases. Already you hear stories of slower production cycles as coordination between US and offshore offices creates a "we can only make one decision a day due to the time difference" situation. However, many jobs are going to keep going to India (and China and elsewhere). This should be looked on, in some ways, as a good thing. Newer products are being produced that are being sold at a lower cost to a recovering business sector. The trick then, for American techies is to position themselves for jobs that require a local presence - such as customer facing jobs. I don't deny that it's annoying if you're a techie right now, but two trends are likely to emerge: (1) companies will find that they went too far in outsourcing certain jobs and (2) new jobs will begin to open up in the US as well. What techies need to do is figure out where those jobs are going to be, and prepare themselves for them. Complaining and blaming India does nothing to solve the problem.