1. Determine whether your IT organization is ripe for outsourcing to India. A centralized application development and maintenance organization is much easier to relocate than a dispersed one.
2. Decide what is strategic to your IT department, and hold on to it.
3. Sign on multiple vendors as a way to keep costs in check and to provide access to a variety of technical skills.
4. Keep a certain percentage of skilled developers in-house to monitor offshore service and rates.
5. If outsourcing to India is a long-term plan, develop a long-term relationship. Don’t manage projects one at a time.
6. Be selective about the vendor’s proposed project leader, and host him stateside. Make sure he is empowered to make key decisions minus the red tape.
7. Spend a month creating a comprehensive transition plan, documenting the knowledge transfer process.
8. Establish rock-solid application development and maintenance processes.
9. Create a robust in-house QA department.
10. Insist that the vendor’s account owner conduct monthly and quarterly reviews, and do the same in-house.