Why global sourcing? Why now? Creating competitive advantage in today's volatile marketplace

The economic downturn and escalating pressure on corporate profitability have combined to focus the spotlight firmly on organizational inefficiencies. To succeed in these tough times, global organizations must effectively manage complexity, gain efficiencies and reduce costs.

Many companies have turned to global sourcing solutions to achieve these objectives. Global sourcing, which comprises domestic and offshore outsourcing and shared services solutions, can be an extremely effective means to achieving strategic operational gains and cost savings. A recent PwC/Duke Offshoring Research Network study found that the top four drivers of global sourcing are cost savings, access to qualified personnel, enhancing efficiency through business process re-design, and competitive pressures.

But the potential rewards often go hand-in-hand with risks and challenges stemming from rapid global growth, inadequate controls around current processes, and the difficulty of harnessing multiple ERP systems, to name a few. Faced with these realities, some companies have deferred their global sourcing implementation efforts, only to see their more proactive peers move forward to achieve efficiencies and reduce their cost structures.