UMass Amherst Strategic Information Technology Center Offers Session on Outsourcing

AMHERST, Mass. - The practice and future of hiring outside firms to run corporate information technology systems is the subject of this fall’s first session of the Strategic Information Technology Center (SITEC) at the Isenberg School of Management at the University of Massachusetts. The event will be held Wednesday Sept. 15, at noon in the Massachusetts Room at the Mullins Center.

Having outside firms install and run computer systems was first utilized as a cost-cutting measure, part of the corporate downsizing trend in the late 1980s. Now it is being done for strategic and competitive reasons, and the outsourcing firms are seen more as valuable business partners, says Leslie D. Ball, SITEC director and associate dean, information technology initiatives, at the Isenberg School of Management.

Guest speakers who will discuss these issues are Brad Sweet, senior partner, applications development and support outsourcing at CSC Consulting, and Joseph Young, president and chief executive officer at Global Data Systems. The topic of their presentation is "Outsourcing: A Partnership to Enable Corporate Success."

Ball says the world market for outsourcing services is growing at 16.3 percent annually and is expected to be a $120-billion business by 2002. The U.S. market is projected to be $51 billion, he says.

SITEC, established last year, is a non-profit research and education center that provides business executives with assistance in improving their skills in collecting, managing, and using information obtained from all sources, including computer databases and the Internet. Students and faculty participate in SITEC sessions along with the visiting business executives. SITEC is co-sponsored by the University and businesses in the region.