For those who may not be familiar with the term, outsourcing means that a company enters into a contract with another company to provide services that ordinarily would be handled by the original company’s employees. Examples of outsourcing include payroll duties, customer service tasks, and other jobs.
Outsourcing is nothing new; it has actually been going on for quite a while. One example of outsourcing that’s been around for a long time is a small company taking advantage of a person who works as a tax preparer during tax time (the months of January through April) and allowing that person to keep the company’s books or handle payroll duties throughout the remainder of the year. This was an arrangement that was common before the days of computers.
It is computers, with their ability to provide communication services all over the world, that has brought outsourcing to the level where it exists today. And, even though simpler things such as payroll duties or customer service are still highly popular tasks for outsourcing, it is also being considered in other areas, such as research and even the legal field.
You might wonder how you can outsource a lawyer. After all, aren’t there certain legal services that can only be performed in person? Yes, there are, but this does not mean that the lawyer doing the “face-to-face” work has to literally be in the same building as the client.
In the case of legal services, law firms may contract with others in different states (and in some cases, even different firms) to represent the main firm in a specific area. The legal firm providing the contract work takes care of matters in that area, all the while maintaining communication with the original law firm, using computers, of course.
So, thanks to computers, there is no telling how far outsourcing can and will go. Finding out should be interesting.