Businesses taking advantage of outsourcing by insourcing outsourcers.

Another software supplier bought by customer

Standard Life has paid £42m to acquire sales automation software maker Focus Solutions.

The move is another example of a big business taking over a supplier to guarantee it gets the most out of software.

The London Stock Exchange bought Sri Lankan software supplier Millennium IT back September 2009 when it decided to replace its core trading platform.

These are examples of businesses wanting to take advantage of the skills and IP of suppliers while retaining control in-house.

Owning the supplier gives the customer the resources required to support the software and control of the software’s development. With business critical applications full outsourcing is a step too far.

It also means that when changes need to be done to the software they will be quicker because the skills will be in-house and therefore there is no need to communicate what is required to a supplier. After all you might not be the supplier’s to priority.


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Er.. aren't those all the arguments against outsourcing business-critical functions in the first place?


Yes. That's why I think it is worth writing about. Outsourcing is, as you know, not always the best option.

I know the blog always appears pro-outsourcing but really it is supposed to provide both sides of the story. That is why your comments are so usefull.

Thanks for your continued contributions.


20 years in IT leave one rather cynical about the judgement of all these industry experts who pop up in Computer Weekly and elsewhere, churning out the hype about the Next Big Thing in the IT business. The only constant seems to be that huge amounts of money, time and effort will be wasted as businesses furiously rush around in ever-decreasing circles in a vain effort to catch up with the latest bandwagon. And nobody will ever sit down and work out what the real costs/benefits of the whole exercise are - or if they do they'll keep very quiet about the results for fear of embarrassing those same "industry experts" and business leaders we're all supposed to worship! Plus ca change, eh?