I am taking a break this week from my discussion of vendor management in order to use this particular platform to rant a bit about a pet peeve of mine. As the title suggests, it’s to rant about the misuse of the word “outsourcing” when people are really referring to “offshoring”.
Today, I read this article from the Washington Times:
Special correspondent John Zarocostas in Geneva interviewed John J. Sweeney, president of the AFL-CIO, last week on the sidelines of the International Labor Organization’s (ILO) ministerial conference about the challenges of globalization and outsourcing and the prospects for employment. The conference began May 31 and runs through Friday.
The millions of people who read this blog and these words will undoubtedly cringe when outsourcing is mentioned with such derision. OK, well yeah, I know millions aren’t reading this blog, but millions are employees in THIS country in the outsourcing industry in some capacity. We on this blog work in HR and many of us owe our livings to outsourcing.
I know many who frequent this site work with brand name outsourcing providers right here in the Good ‘Ole US of A!
On a nightly basis we hear from Lou Dobbs about how America is going down the tubes because of the “Outsourcing of America.”
PLEASE, PLEASE PLEASE, we must do something about this! We who make our livings in outsourcing, whether it be HR, payroll, benefits, finance, accounting, transportation, logistics, information technology or whatever (for goodness sakes, I even outsource my lawn maintenance!!) must do what we can to change the vernacular in this country. Write to Lou Dobbs and educate him. Let him know the proper word is OFFSHORING! He should be talking nightly about the “Offshoring of America.”
Let me get you started:
Dear Mr. Dobbs,
My name is _______ and I am proud to say I am a gainfully employed taxpayer working for an outsource provider in the _____ industry right here in the USA.
I watch your program on a regular basis and marvel at how you have been able to single-handedly foster a national dialogue on the dangers of outsourcing and the “Outsourcing of America”.
The only problem, sir, is that you are misinformed. Early on in your crusade someone misled you. You see, outsourcing is good. Millions upon millions of people in this country work in the outsourcing industry. Every company in America outsources one thing or another to an American outsourcing company.
I believe the word you are really looking for is “Offshoring”. You see, that’s when jobs are shipped over seas. Please consider changing the name of your nightly segment.
Donald Glade (insert your name)
When the vernacular is changed, maybe then we in the outsourcing industry will get our just due! We will be looked at as creators of jobs within our borders. We will be revered for the tax base we provide. We will be thanked for our consumerism! Never again will we be embarrassed to say what we do for a living. Never again will our children be the victims of scorn and ridicule from the kids whose parents lost jobs because of OFFSHORING!
Join me on this mission if you will. Take up the banner of outsourcing! Proclaim proudly from the mountaintops: Outsourcing is good!
About the author – Donald Glade is President and Founder of Sourcing Analytics, Inc., an independent consulting firm specializing in helping companies optimize their HR / benefits / payroll service partnerships through relationship management, financial analysis, and process improvement.