Monday, December 7, 2009 |
As more and more people turn to social networking sites and other online communications tools, the concept of project management is fast evolving with it. From a business perspective, the value proposition of free utilities is enormous, and companies are realizing that having an online presence is not merely a marketing tool but also an effective way of managing your relationships.
This trend is best illustrated by the outsourcing process. As companies find that it is cheaper and more cost effective to outsource non-core functions, new media tools are stepping up to fill that last mental barrier keeping companies from fully embracing an outsourcing strategy for growth: the absence of tactile, face to face communications. Now, with Twitter, Facebook, Skype, and Base Camp, collaborators from all over the world can converge on one project and do it more efficiently than shuttling between airports or burning the phone lines.
The beauty of the emergence of new media is that it gives companies who outsource non core functions control over how a project proceeds; in fact, it can be argued that new media gives people the ability to affect changes mid stream and in real time, a luxury that was absent a mere decade ago. For outsourcing companies, it also gives them access to a whole new set of potential customers, companies that have seen the wisdom of maintaining an online presence themselves.
Having said this, the increased reliance on new media to facilitate outsourced operations means companies and individuals must now forge and maintain relationships in the digital world. With the increased use of social networks, this 'virtual life' can also be fully harnessed for business purposes as catch basins for increased interaction between team members. With these new tools, no longer will a manager in the US constantly worry about not getting through to his foreign outsourced partner; new media has made communications a mere mouse click away, and this bodes well for the outsourcing industry because it gives potential customers a new comfort level when dealing with people they have never personally met.