Sunday, February 8, 2009

Growth in Homeshoring Dominates U.S. Outsourcing

oDesk, the leading marketplace for online workteams, reports that U.S. buyers are increasingly homeshoring, or outsourcing software and Web development work to highly-qualified freelance professionals based in the U.S. Work done in the U.S. has grown at a rate of 367% from 2007 to 2008, nearly 50% faster than oDesk's rate of growth.

Freelance Job Growth Accelerates in the U.S.

This growth is especially significant since U.S.-based professionals like PHP programmers and JavaScript developers are more expensive for companies than outsourcing to India, or other lower-cost countries better known for outsourcing. The U.S. average hourly rate is more than $6 higher than the oDesk average. When broken into job categories, U.S. rates are actually rising in skilled categories like software development.

Outsourcing to United States

One explanation for U.S. job growth on oDesk is that there are more U.S. providers today, providing buyers a wider variety of U.S.-based skills and experience, than ever before. In December alone, over 20,000 new U.S. providers signed up on oDesk, the largest monthly percentage increase (over 40%) that oDesk has seen since 2005. Other possible reasons include the ability to better co-ordinate across time-zone differences with fewer language and cultural barriers. Regardless of the exact cause, U.S. providers' average feedback score has been consistently higher than the oDesk average worldwide, and this has allowed US professionals to command higher rates.

"When people in the U.S. think of outsourcing, they typically think of lower-cost countries," said oDesk CEO Gary Swart. "But, we're seeing an interesting trend of U.S. companies increasingly turning to U.S.-based talent for their contracting needs."