Project Management

Topic Teasers Vol. 3: Agile Nearshoring

Heartland Nebraska / Iowa Chapter

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My organization outsources to save money, but it creates communication issues and other problems for my agile team. Can offshoring (outsourcing) work effectively for non-collocated agile groups?

A. Yes, but success may depend on how far away from your collocated team the outsourced resources are located.

B.  No. Agile practices stress collocated teams. If you are not based together, there is no way for an agile approach to be effective.

C. Yes, but only if the teams switch the locations where they live every six months so that each group learns the language and culture of the other.

D.  No. Agile was created in the United States, and therefore it is only intended to work for American teams.

 

Answer: A.  Yes, but success may depend on how far away from your collocated team the outsourced resources are located.

Despite its success and continuing adoption in many corporations, not-for profit organizations and governmental agencies, agile teams often exist as a pocket in a large, traditional hierarchy with a lingering mindset that outsourcing equals savings. Those of us who work in the reality of such an agile team face additional stress trying to coordinate a non-collocated group with its United States counterpart.

In addition to the obvious language and cultural difference that can divide a team’s cohesion, there are …


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