We’re at a time when the whole world is starting to impose draconian measures to halt further spread of Corona (COVID-19) virus. While the mounting number of deaths and new cases around the world is worrying, the total effect on the world economy is massive.

A few days ago UNCTAD tweeted that it estimates that the slowdown of manufacturing in China due to the COVID-19 outbreak could result in a $50+ billion decrease in exports across global value chains. The world has been using China as it’s manufacturing hub from expensive high-end electronic components to cheap plastic toys. And many organizations have been solely relying on China for their supply chain. They are now at the verge of not being able to operate anymore. With the necessity for cost reductions and manufacturing at mega scales of the modern industry demands, offshoring without doubt would be the most feasible solution. Offshoring also reduces the risk of any disaster affecting an organization’s main operation. But the risk becomes very high when you don’t diversify your offshore hubs geographically.

Let’s turn our head to another massive industry relying on the sole offshoring capacity of another giant like China – IT industry has a huge dependency on India. The scales of the human resource capacity of India matches the manufacturing capabilities of China without a doubt. However, when many organizations run their only offshore engineering centre in India, they share the same risk of what happened with China. It might not be Coronavirus, but the risk factors associated with highly dense population centres in India & ongoing challenges with public health & hygiene etc. creates a recipe for a future disaster.

It’s worthwhile to always look at diversifying your core teams globally across a few countries. With many other South Asian countries gaining popularity & being highly competitive on IT offshoring, this would not be a hard thing to achieve. For example, Sri Lanka dubbed as the “Island of Ingenuity” is an island with an IT workforce growing 20% YoY. Sri Lanka has been awarded the “Destination of the Year Award 2019” by Global Sourcing Association Awards, UK and One of the top dozen of countries in AT Kearney Global Services Location list for the last couple of years.

Sri Lanka has been already chosen as an alternative offshore tech hub by many global companies in the US & EU, where they have bigger tech centres across One or multiple locations in India. This geographical redundancy works in perfect harmony for an organization’s offshore strategy since both India and Sri Lanka share the same time zone.

You could read more about Sri Lanka’s booming IT/BPO industry at https://slasscom.lk/. There are many reasons that Sri Lanka stands out being a great alternative IT offshoring destination with few reasons being;

High quality IT engineering talent in the country. English skills and the work ethics of the Sri Lankan workforce is a value addition to their engineering skills.

Being an island with just Two international airports, it’s much easy to control a situation like Coronavirus (COVID-19) coming into the country. Below photo shows Colombo airport with thermal scanners installed in a walkway.

Sri Lanka is a safe country with less natural disasters happening here. Last major disaster to hit Sri Lanka for decades was the Indonesian Tsunami which effected the coastal areas.

With good infrastructure readiness in the country, the majority of IT workforce can remotely work from homes in case of a disaster. For example, some organizations like CMS have well established BCP (Business Continuity Plan) implemented and backed by ISO-27001 certified business processes.

Sri Lankan Airport Officials, wearing facemasks, monitor screens of a thermal scanner to check the body temperature of arriving passengers.


While it would take a huge investment to hire your own staff, register a business and set up your own office in Sri Lanka, there are plenty of IT offshoring companies such as CMS where they build & host bespoke remote IT teams for you. This reduces the cost & time of starting up your own remote team by multi-folds as you need to only pay a monthly fee for the talents you require.

While many countries like the USA have the capacity & capability to produce the same supplies as China, the problem lies in the timing, economics and the effort it would take to start such a process now. The story would be the same for IT in the middle of a disaster. It takes time to train a remote team on complex business processes and start operating on full efficiency. So now is the best time to start looking at diversifying your offshore workforce than waiting to do it at a time where everyone would be in high demand for limited human resources.

Talk to us at www.cms.lk about building your own bespoke remote team. We could help you with our 20+ years of experience providing offshore Sri Lankan IT teams to organizations in the US and EU.

Author : Administrator
Published Date March 11, 2020
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