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Two of the significant outsourcing centres across the world are India and China. If your office is in London and it is 10AM in the morning, for a significant portion of the year, the outsourcing offices are already well into their working afternoon. Mumbai is by now 3PM and Shanghai 5PM. If your office is in New York it is still only 5 AM in the morning and you have not had your first coffee. Whereas if your office is in Sydney it is 7 PM in the evening and hopefully you are on your way out of the office for some well deserved after work beers.

If you are in New York and get into your office at 7 AM your colleagues in Shanghai must wait until 7 PM to talk to you. This might be earlier than you intend to arrive at the New York office. This time might be later than your colleagues in Shanghai intend to wait at their office too. Your colleagues in Shanghai can ask you to arrive in work earlier or you can ask them to stay later. Either way, this is not ideal and creates friction and song problems. They can leave you a message or an e-mail or a report but we realise the importance of person-to-person communication.

So, you see this phase shift of time provides very little opportunity to get together with your colleagues around the globe. So, we seek out ways to overcome this communications snag. One of the ways is appointing country representatives in your base location. The country representatives are in the base location but work alternating shifts covering the time zone of their origin country. By communicating with the outsourced personnel and with each other, reporting back to the project they maintain face-to-face contact with disparate teams and with personnel working in the base location. This concentration on face-to-face contact will improve the effectiveness of communication across the project, yet naturally at extra cost.

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