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Definition

insourcing

 

Insourcing is a business practice in which work that would otherwise have been contracted out is performed in house. 

Insourcing often involves bringing in specialists to fill temporary needs or training existing personnel to perform tasks that would otherwise have been outsourced. An example is the use of in-house engineers to write technical manuals for equipment they have designed, rather than sending the work to an outside technical writing firm. In this example, the engineers might have to take technical writing courses at a local college, university, or trade school before being able to complete the task successfully. Other challenges of insourcing include the possible purchase of additional hardware and/or software that is scalable and energy-efficient enough to deliver an adequate return on investment (ROI).

Insourcing can be viewed as outsourcing as seen from the opposite side. For example, a company based in Japan might open a plant in the United States for the purpose of employing American workers to manufacture Japanese products. From the Japanese perspective this is outsourcing, but from the American perspective it is insourcing. Nissan, a Japanese automobile manufacturer, has in fact done this.

This was last updated in June 2009

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