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Web systems have always been popular operations to outsource, but the percentage of organizations outsourcing this function has shown little growth over the past three years since recovering from the recessionary low in 2009.
As shown in the figure below from our study, Web/E-Commerce Outsourcing Trends and Experience, slightly more than half of all organizations (52%) are outsourcing some portion of their web operations this year. While substantial, the frequency is the same as in 2011 and up only slightly up from 2010.
After losing considerable ground during the recession, declining to a low of 35% in 2009, the percentage of companies that outsource at least some of their web and e-commerce operations rebounded significantly in 2010. Since then, however, outsourcing activity appears to have stalled, albeit at a relatively high frequency.
Web/e-commerce outsourcing covers a wide variety of operations. It includes everything from hosting an organization’s website to coordinating its entire e-commerce operation. It also can include designing and managing the website, managing media and marketing operations, and even managing warehouse inventory. More recently, the growing impact of social media has meant that online service providers must be experts in social media marketing as well as search engine optimization.
To help IT executives better assess their outsourcing options in this always changing landscape, the full study reports the percentage of organizations outsourcing web/e-commerce operations (frequency), the average amount of work outsourced (level), and the change to the amount of work being outsourced (trend). We also present data on cost and service experience and on how these trends differ by organization size and sector.