Saturday, May 31, 2014

Learning from bad experiences

Reading a skeptical view of the Sprint-Tmobile merger reminded me of my own interaction with skeptics on a different topic. this is the topic of outsourcing SW development.

These skeptics believe that outsourcing SW development to say India, Russia or other countries will not work. And when asked the reason why, the answer is that they have been in companies where they tried to do this. And it invariably did not work.

Those are fair remarks but what concerns me is that these same people do not step back and try to analyze what went wrong. And how to fix it to make it work. They have experienced that it did not work and hence they conclude it will not work. But they do not make an effort to learn from their bad experiences.

As far as outsourcing goes, I believe it can be successful if two conditions are met namely you need to have a capable partner (project manager with a team of SW dev) on the other side. Secondly, you need to be very precise about the interfaces and requirements that that govern the outsourced product.

Of course on the Sprint-Tmobile issue, I am a skeptic when it comes to the promises reportedly made by Son. And that is because of physics. In such a case, you really cannot make it work if it goes against the laws of nature.