The Next Shoe to Drop: Offshoring Professional Services?

Over at the Globe and Mail, Columnist Margaret Wente argues that so called “knowledge workers” may not have the job security they’ve always presumed:

Remember when outsourcing meant call centres in Mumbai? Now it means lawyers in Mumbai. Last November, Thomson Reuters, one of the biggest information companies in the world, bought Pangea3, a legal-process outsourcing firm with most of its lawyers in India. These lawyers do the grunt work traditionally assigned to junior lawyers in North America – document review, due diligence and contract management. Prestigious North American law firms charge $300 an hour for this kind of work. Lawyers in India charge $30 an hour. These services have been slow to catch on. But now the toothpaste is out of the tube, and revenue at India’s legal outsourcing firms is soaring.

That’s the outsourcing piece. Here’s the technology piece. Thanks to advances in artificial intelligence, armies of expensive lawyers hired to analyze complex documents are being replaced by software. . . .

This is a trend we’re watching.  You can read the full story here.

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