In IT Enabled Services, the secret to offshore success is often onshore!
In practice, many business processes are documented in great detail only when it is offshored. Often, the offshore vendor will help in getting this done and it is in their interest to do it in as much detail as possible.
This may be enough for drawing up a contract with a few key KPIs and SLAs and as long as these are measured diligently and analyzed, processes are executed as expected, no more, no less.
However, onshore representatives could look at this as a golden opportunity to not just look at the manual parts of the business process that is being offshored, but consider the whole end to end process.
Is what is being offshored absolutely value-adding parts of the process? Was something being done for decades without any thought as to why they might be doing it? Prof. C.K.Prahlad calls this "Paving the Cow Path".
Cows start wandering every day through the meadow grazing and pretty soon, there is a meandering path that is also taken by joggers and soon the path becomes one blazed by cows! Now paving this cow path will only instituitionalize something that may have been inefficient in the first place. Is there a shorter and a better path then the cow path?
That's the question that may really help offshoring efforts deliver much more value to the company than just cost savings. Process Improvement efforts before the offshoring delivers a lot more value to the company!
The secret to Offshore Success is Onshore! Both before it starts and way after it is started also.