Outsourcing: Is Your Job Moving Overseas? Banking Industry, Software, Engineering Jobs At Risk

May 10, 2004
The San Diego Channel

SAN DIEGO -- It's an anxious time for many San Diego workers. Frequently, employees hear of another batch of high-paying, white-collar jobs getting exported to far cheaper locales such as India, China, or the Philippines, 10News reported.

Valerie Chau is a software developer in San Diego who lost her job to company outsourcing.

"November 7, 2001, was the last day I had a full time job with benefits," she said.

Despite Chau's masters degree, law degree, and high IQ, she has not been able to find more than a few hours of work per week for the last two years.

"I work anywhere and everywhere, at very low pay. I make less than $20 an hour, sometimes $12. My last full-time job I made $72,000," Chau said.

Even she questions why a company could hire her if a worker in India would do the same job for $7,000 a year, without benefits.

"U.S. firms are able to find people with the same quality workmanship, but at a lower price," San Diego Association of Governments chief economist Marney Cox said.

Cox said it's difficult hard to count the number of jobs leaving the U.S., but some economists say 300,000 jobs went overseas last year and one survey said over the next couple of decades up to 11 percent of California positions will disappear.

"I'm not sure I would describe it as beneficial or not beneficial, but I think it's more of an unavoidable thing," management professor Stephen Standifird said.

Standifird said outsourcing makes sense for many companies who are looking to cut costs in a world market and economists agree the government should not intervene, according to 10News.

"In the long run, it would be disastrous for us to set up protectionism for those companies, forcing them to keep jobs here," Cox said.

Chau said she not only worries about her immediate future, but the long-term consequences of outsourcing.

"Who is going to be the world's technology leader? Is America going to be a bunch of McDonald's workers? If so, we will no longer have the defense of a superpower," Chau said.

Most economists said the country is in a transition period. The real consequences of outsourcing for the U.S. won't be clear for several years, according to 10News.

Standifird said the jobs most at risk right now are in the banking industry, software development, and engineering.

One prominent San Diego field not affected by outsourcing is the pharmaceutical industry. Those companies are reluctant to outsource because they are so concerned about protecting their patents.
Copyright 2004 by TheSanDiegoChannel.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.



In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, any copyrighted work in this message is distributed under fair use without profit or payment for non-profit research and educational purposes only. [Ref. http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml]

Back to Current Edition Citizen Review Archive LINKS Search This Site