Over the past three years, the IT environment has seen an increase in popularity for Cloud and enterprise systems, such as Software as a Service (SaaS) and Platform as a Service (PaaS). These systems have paved the way for new outsourcing strategies together with new challenges in outsourcing provider selection and integration.

The new service-based norms of outsourcing became mainstream: pay-as-you-go models took over in a bid to attract even small service providers and new skills needed to be developed to deliver to expectations.

Global political developments: The course of IT outsourcing will be determined by recent development in the political sphere, both in Europe and worldwide. Legal implications may impact delivery centres, and partners need to agree on a common policy for adherence and feasibility.

Data security: Protection of information during outsourcing has become one of the major issues of concern for companies. IT outsourcing providers should enforce internal information security practices and pay major attention to their non-disclosure policies. If there is any breach in the security process, this will have a negative impact on the relationship between client and outsourcing provider. Information security will therefore remain a major focus for outsourcing companies in 2017.

Protection of information during outsourcing has become one of the major issues of concern for companies

Automated systems and processes: Automation is unavoidable and software developers have to keep up the pace in 2017. Automatic processes take less time and are more efficient. Automation will help standardise processes, reducing direct costs and extending benefits to suppliers, buyers and customers.

Call centres (BPO): The traditional mega big call centres, as we know it, will disappear gradually or, at least, their operations will be greatly reduced. With technological advances made in Artificial Intelligence (AI), self-service tools become more widespread. This is putting at risk the traditional call centres. Bigger volumes at call centres will be taken care of by virtual agents and chat bots and will replace the need for human resources. A major company in Malta has already started to look for new call centre platforms to better serve their customers in the coming years.

Talent pool accessibility: Companies have adopted talent search, as this proves to be cost-effective in the long run in having skilled and professional people. Most IT companies in the developed countries perceive the urgent need for qualified specialists and are ready to accept remote skills, if that is the key to effective and on schedule work performance. The past trends will also be applicable in 2017 and more pressure is applied on recruitment specialists to provide skilled professionals in a timely manner.

Our local IT outsourcing branch, Castille Labs, will be using Castille’s recruitment experience to continue recruiting the best candidates for our clients as well as adjusting our internal processes to embrace 2017 with confidence.

Kenny Kian Fat is a service delivery manager at Castille Labs – Business Technology Consulting & IT Services.

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