Backsourcing dos and don

Jeff Kaplan, senior consultant with the Cutter Consortium’s Sourcing and Vendor Relationships Advisory Service, offers the following tips to those firms exploring the backsourcing path:

– Notify the outsourcer of the initiation of the backsourcing process. This may be necessary, not only to comply with contractual obligations but also to help foster a more cooperative climate.

– Establish a backsourcing plan and schedule. Include provisions to ensure that the outsourcer returns all enterprise-related property, continues to support the company’s staff for a specified period of time, provides services until the company can reassume full control of operations and maintains satisfactory service levels during the transition.

– Quickly determine staff reassignment and responsibilities. It’s best to do this as soon as possible to minimize staff uncertainty and related productivity and morale issues.

– Develop security policies to protect proprietary information. Procedures for implementing new technical and password protections should be established to minimize the risk associated with disgruntled employees accessing protected data or disrupting IT systems.

– Make business continuity part of the backsourcing plan. It’s important to include disaster recovery procedures for possible business disruptions during the transition.

– Communicate the backsourcing plan, goals and objectives to the enterprise and affected third parties. This will help gain the support and cooperation of internal and external customers, partners, vendors and shareholders affected by the change.

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