This article centers around a company which makes recycled bowls, called CaliBowls. Previously they made their bowls out of China, but encountered several problems with that model.
While reading the article, think about the comparison between the manufacturing problems encountered by CaliBowls and what IT shops who outsource work often find themselves struggling with. For instance, consider the problem of precise design and just-in-time delivery:
But producing a precisely designed product far from the company’s home base turned out to be harder than the founders expected. The curved lip of the bowls was difficult to mold, and quality control became a concern. There were worries about lead times and inventory. When a chocolate company requested 800 CaliBowls on short notice for its store displays, it became clear that it was time to move toward a just-in-time delivery model. “We needed to be able to adapt more quickly,” says Stump. “You lose a lot of opportunities if you can’t deliver.”
With IT organizations that outsource help desk operations, it’s hard to be responsive or even be sure that best practices are being followed. And what if your customer wants to radically change something? Trying to fast-track work through a group outsourced to another country might make it impossible.
When CaliBowls moved operations back to the states, they found that not only did quality improve, but the customers were more satisfied with company interactions. Furthermore, CaliBowls is now able to rapidly respond to requests and continues to grow their business each year.
Read the full article here: http://www.forbes.com/sites/thestreet/2012/04/04/buzzworthy-benefits-of-reshoring-companies/