In a joint presentation, Charlie Feld, a former CIO at a number of companies, including Frito-Lay Co., and the author of the new book Blind Spot IT (Olive Press, 2010), and R. Keith Halbert, senior vice president and CIO at United Airlines (who participated via videoconferencing), answered an audience question that has broad implications for current and future IT workers.
This question: how can people can be encouraged to get into IT when so much work is being sent offshore?
"Outsourcing can be used for good or evil, depending upon your motivation," said Halbert.
He argued that a company can outsource certain functions while retaining the right IT expertise and leadership. These "are all complementary tools and techniques" to drive down costs, but it all depends on the vision that is set.
Patrick Thibodeau covers SaaS and enterprise applications, outsourcing, government IT policies, data centers and IT workforce issues for Computerworld. Follow Patrick on Twitter at @DCgov or subscribe to Patrick's RSS feed. His e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.