BUENOS AIRES — Kirk Laughlin is an expert on IT outsourcing and BPO. Visiting here to lecture on the possibilities that the U.S. market holds for Argentina’s IT companies, he took time to speak with IT Business about what the U.S. tech market needs and what local companies can do to meet those requirements.
“Many U.S. companies need software to add value to their businesses,” said Laughlin, founder of NextCoast Media and the publication Nearshore Americas. “In terms of outsourcing, the price is still important — but not the only factor to consider. The Argentines have, in relation to the rest of the countries of the region, a very interesting talent base, a good education system, and there is the cultural affinity that helps to develop business relationships. For all these reasons, Argentina is in a good position to meet U.S. demands,” said Laughlin.
Regarding the global economic crisis, which had its epicenter in the United States, Laughlin said that there were cuts in some areas but that was a good time to assess the situation of the IT market. “The big question that American companies are asking since then is whether the Indian market for IT services remains the most desirable for reasons of price, or whether they should open up to others, in which quality is the most important value,” he said.
However, Laughlin said he believes that much remains to be done in the local market to generate business and a reputation in the U.S. “I think Argentina is not ready yet to send a comprehensive and unified brand to the outside. But this is a good time to say to the world, ‘We are open to do business, we have talent, quality, and commitment.”
“These messages must be delivered actively by Argentina technology providers because people in America still do not know where to go to find information about what’s offered by Argentine companies,” Laughlin said. “The companies in this country really need to ask themselves if they want to go out and sell their services and products to the world.”