From what we are seeing in the industry, most of the CIO’s who have experimented with this in US are now rolling it back (often it is done by their successors). The biggest reason for this is that traditionally Testing and QA Departments are responsible for verifying what business has dreamed up and this is why organizations like to keep their business and testing close together. We all know that in majority of situations we here at North America have not yet perfected the creation of business requirement that testers need to create their test cases to ensure what has been promised is actually being delivered. Thus, it has proven to be next to impossible for a team based thousands of miles away to fully do justice to what developers have come up with. It is realised that this is so much more difficult if these developers and testers are part of the same offshore company.
The current statistics gathered by Paul Herzlich from Ovum show that India needed to graduate over 6,000 to 8,000 testers last year. IT professionals know that one does not come out of university as a tester – one needs to spend at least 5 years in the “testing trenches” to be any good in this crucial discipline and the outsourcing boom in India has not been around long enough to keep up with demand for qualified testers. This is another reason why North American companies that have unsuccessfully experimented with offshoring their testing efforts are reeling them back – they just simply do not know who is testing their products. What we are seeing is that India is now outsourcing their testing work to China, China is outsourcing to Ireland, Ireland to Bulgaria and Bulgaria to Ukraine. It goes without saying that each one of these partners add up their premium and thus pretty much remove the initial reason why this whole thing started – price advantage.
It appears that our wait and see approach in Canada has paid off – Canadian companies chose to keep their finger on the pulse and while potentially offshoring other areas of IT have kept their testing in-house - close to their business.
Anybody these days can come out with a competitive product that pretty much has the same features and potentially the same price, however in the day and age we live in today it only takes one blogger to post an even minor defect they found with one of the products and it is almost guaranteed that the company that has released a “defective” product will not sell much of it and their competitor will get most of the business. This is why the latest stats show that many companies now spend close to 40% of their IT and Development budgets on Testing and Quality Assurance. And this exactly the reason why QA Consultants are in business, already successfully delivering locally close to 250 Canadian QA and Testing projects this year alone at prices that are often better than in India.
Alex Rodov is the Managing Director of QA Consultants - http://www.qaconsultants.ca