Channels ▼
RSS

Design

South American Software Development


The Outsourcing Provider and Her Two Husbands

It's with respect to outsourcing, which requires intimate understanding of cultural issues between partnering companies and between collaborating programmers, that such isolating factors matter most.

While there is a widespread stereotype of South American countries as politically unstable, The Economist characterized Brazil as the most stable of the BRIC countries, and the Heritage Foundation rated Brazil fairly highly for protection of property rights and free trade. (A dark-humored South American joke: Why has there never been a coup in Washington D.C.? Because there is no U.S. Embassy there.)

In the case of North American companies partnering with South American ones, the term would be nearsourcing. It's partly geographic, and factors like being in roughly the same time zones can be a big plus, as Argentine outsourcing companies like to point out. And while language is a barrier, both language and other cultural differences are less likely to be a problem between countries in the Western Hemisphere than between U.S. and Eastern European or Asian partners. But many issues shape the form of these international software development relationships. Sometimes it's U.S. law, as in the case of the H1-B visa policy.

And, as mentioned, South American countries all have their unique cultural, economic, and regulatory issues. Argentina is particularly aggressive in pursuing outsourcing relationships. Columbia, Chile, and Venezuela are still marginal players, but all three countries are showing signs of making IT growth a priority. Of course, by focusing on South America, we are excluding one of the most powerful Latin American countries, Mexico, as well as little Costa Rica, which claims to be the leading outsourcing partner in Latin America.

Finally, it should not be assumed that North American companies are always the preferred partners for outsourcing relationships. China and India are already huge markets for South America, and are eager to increase their connections in the region.


Related Reading


More Insights






Currently we allow the following HTML tags in comments:

Single tags

These tags can be used alone and don't need an ending tag.

<br> Defines a single line break

<hr> Defines a horizontal line

Matching tags

These require an ending tag - e.g. <i>italic text</i>

<a> Defines an anchor

<b> Defines bold text

<big> Defines big text

<blockquote> Defines a long quotation

<caption> Defines a table caption

<cite> Defines a citation

<code> Defines computer code text

<em> Defines emphasized text

<fieldset> Defines a border around elements in a form

<h1> This is heading 1

<h2> This is heading 2

<h3> This is heading 3

<h4> This is heading 4

<h5> This is heading 5

<h6> This is heading 6

<i> Defines italic text

<p> Defines a paragraph

<pre> Defines preformatted text

<q> Defines a short quotation

<samp> Defines sample computer code text

<small> Defines small text

<span> Defines a section in a document

<s> Defines strikethrough text

<strike> Defines strikethrough text

<strong> Defines strong text

<sub> Defines subscripted text

<sup> Defines superscripted text

<u> Defines underlined text

Dr. Dobb's encourages readers to engage in spirited, healthy debate, including taking us to task. However, Dr. Dobb's moderates all comments posted to our site, and reserves the right to modify or remove any content that it determines to be derogatory, offensive, inflammatory, vulgar, irrelevant/off-topic, racist or obvious marketing or spam. Dr. Dobb's further reserves the right to disable the profile of any commenter participating in said activities.

 
Disqus Tips To upload an avatar photo, first complete your Disqus profile. | View the list of supported HTML tags you can use to style comments. | Please read our commenting policy.
 

Video