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Clever Outsourcing…The Right Way and the Wrong Way

time management skills, business success

There’s a fantastically funny story right here about a programmer,  “Bob” (not his real name), working for a large company. The I.T. department found that for some reason, folks from China were accessing his office computer late in the evening. They assumed they were hackers, or that that Bob was a victim of some kind of malware. They were pretty surprised, since these guys had gotten past a pretty heavy security system.

The real truth was even more shocking. And creative.

Bob was a high-end programmer, making over $250,000 per year. He thought it might be easier to just get paid without doing the work himself, so he “outsourced” his entire job to China. He paid some Chinese programmers $50,000 a year, only one-fifth his salary. He gave them all of his passwords to access needed systems, and even FedExed his RSA token to China so they could access his data remotely. (An RSA token that little USB plugin thingy issued to you that’s needed to access secure systems.)

Then he just sat back and watched cat videos on YouTube while the Chinese programmers did his job at night. He got paid $250,000, paid out $50,000, and kept $200,000. Not bad for dorking around on Facebook and Ebay for 8 hours a day.

Of course this guy got fired and completely crossed the line in terms of dishonesty and putting the security of his company at risk. I’m very curious if he was prosecuted as well. I don’t know if he was, but he should have been.

That all being said, while his intentions were bad, his technique was great. I am constantly looking for places that cost me time and money that I can outsource to others to do cheaper and/or faster. You should be too. Thanks to geoarbitrage and globalization, you can outsource just about any task, from the simple to the very complex, at prices that are shockingly inexpensive.

Here are a list of web sites where you can find people who will do almost anything you want (that’s legal), for the right price, which is often extremely low.

  • demandstudios.com
  • elance.com
  • sologig.com
  • freelancer.com
  • odesk.com
  • asksunday.com
  • writers-editors.com
  • rentacoder.com
  • fiverr.com
  • crowdspring.com
  • taskrabbit.com

I would very strongly suggest that you pick one or two of the above sites, set up an account (which is always free to do), poke around, and learn how this works. I promise it will open up a whole new world for you. It certainly did for me.

You could also be on the other side of the equation and make some easy money on the side by doing the work instead of hiring. I know of a 12 year-old girl who makes $400 a month by ghost writing blog posts. All she does is use Wikipedia as her source, she writes short blog posts on all kinds of subjects, and people pay her to do it. If a 12 year-old girl can do it…

Just don’t do it the way Bob did. 🙂