Quoting the Experts: Top 5 Industry Insights from Nearshore Cafe

These top five quotes from our Nearshore Cafe podcast series explore topics such as buyer demands, industry equality, political hurdles, the future of talent, and the disruption of automation.

Since launching in 2015, our Nearshore Cafe podcast series has featured a number of expert guests, each with deep insight into the state of nearshore. With perspectives from government officials, analysts, vendors, and their customers, we’ve managed to unearth a broad spectrum of ideas that paint a clear picture of our industry.

Here we’ve rounded up the top five quotes from our podcasts, covering topics such as buyer demands, industry equality, political hurdles, the future of talent, and the disruption of automation.


What the Buy-Side Looks For in Vendors and Geographies

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“A vendor that can understand my business and what my needs are is a vendor I’m going to want to continue talking to.” – Michael Moore

Getting the inside track on what the buy-side want from a vendor relationship is not always easy, but doing so can provide invaluable insight into the vendor selection process.

For Micheal Moore, VP Customer Care & Sales Operations at SiriusXM, the key is in not allowing other departments such as procurement to dictate how the client-vendor relationship is run, but also ensuring that the internal team vision is aligned with how partners are viewed in the broader strategy.

Moore’s approach in selecting vendors in new geographies involves spending time with a partner in that location and scoping out the views of people beyond potential vendors, such as government ministers. His advice is to “approach it as though you are launching a BPO.”

Listen to the full podcast here


A.T. Kearney: Why Automation Has India Worriedrobot eye

“In the near future, the people with skills most suited for non-repetitive processes will be the winners.” – Johan Gott

A.T. Kearney’s 2016 Global Services Index, which ranks the world’s top 55 outsourcing countries along measures such as cost of work, labor skills and ease of doing business, confirmed the disruptive role that robotics and Business Process as a Service is having on IT outsourcing.

In this podcast, Johan Gott, a principal in A.T. Kearney’s private equity practice, discussed how countries are compared and ranked in the 2016 Global Services Index, what the growing use of automation means for countries like India, and the implications of this for the nearshore.

“India should be worried,” Gott said, emphasizing that countries that do not want to lose out to automation need to differentiate themselves with high level human talent and sophisticated BPO/ KPO offerings. He also highlighted the rise of social impact outsourcing and its potential in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Listen to the full podcast here


Women in IT in Latin America Still Face Significant Hurdles

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“It is really hard to convince a woman in places like Colombia and Chile that she can become something other than what society has decided what she should become.” – Ilana Milkes

Today, the need to encourage more women into IT as a career and ensure that the tech industry is more accepting of women in the field is still prevalent.

In a special panel session focused on women in IT in Latin America, Ilana Milkes, Founder of WorldTechMakers, Viviana Perez, Recruitment Specialist at ThoughtWorks Ecuador, and ThoughtWorks CTO Dr Rebecca Parsons, discuss the realities of being a woman in IT, how Latin America is addressing the need to encourage more women to enter into IT, and the challenges involved in making it happen.

The panel discusses their experience of women in IT in Latin America and highlight the cultural aspects that make change so difficult, concluding that government and private initiatives to encourage and empower women to enter IT are increasing, but true change and the realization of an ideal and equal environment will take more time.

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Listen to the full podcast here


Former US Ambassador: Mexico’s Tech Sector Has a Lot to OfferGarza cropped

“Mexico is not only our neighbor, it is our trade partner.” – Antonio Garza

Former U.S. ambassador to Mexico Antonio Garza believes more should be done to clarify the benefits of trade between the two countries. For Garza, it is a matter of moving away from the discussion of economic impact to how trade is good for ordinary Americans.

Despite the increasingly troubling political rhetoric of the U.S election race, Garza, who still lives south of the border, has not seen a slowdown in interest in investment in Mexico. In this podcast, Garza discusses the need to champion closer collaboration between the U.S and Mexico, what a modern border can and should look like, and what all this means for the tech sectors in both countries. He also highlights the dynamic start-up and entrepreneurial culture of Mexico’s tech industry.

Listen to the full podcast here


Brown University CIO: “Automation Requires Buy-In”

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“For automation to work, you need to get buy-in from the people potentially being displaced by automation.” – Professor Ravi Pendse

Professor Ravi Pendse, Vice President and CIO at Brown University, believes that if we move from a focus on job security to one on career security — the evolution of roles through the lifecycle of work — automation can offer great benefits.

Using bank tellers as an example, Pendse explains that much of that routine work is being replaced with smart phones and kiosks. If the teller is then trained to become a customer experience officer, for example, then they have greater career security rather than focusing on the loss of the teller role.

In this Nearshore Cafe podcast, Pendse explains that human interaction will always be valuable and no machine can replace that value, while expressing his views on the implementation of automation, techno-pessimism, and the need for a balanced approach to automation.

Listen to the full podcast here


Which quotes resonated with you in our Nearshore Cafe podcast series? Who would you like to see in our next podcasts? Let us know in the comments.

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