Strategic excellence: Navigating the landscape of engineering services outsourcing (ESOa) for optimal business performance

Although developing a product from start to finish in-house may seem like an excellent idea on paper, the reality is far from it. This is an extremely complex and resource-intensive process that will require you to hire specialised experts at every stage of the product lifecycle. You will need to spend time and resources to find, recruit, and train these experts, which is not practical if you want to keep up in today’s highly competitive and dynamic world.

Engineering services outsourcing (ESO) can help you overcome this challenge, allowing you to delegate specific processes to dedicated experts and freeing up your time and resources to focus on your core mission and objectives. With the rapid globalisation and rising demand for technology integration into product offerings, the global ESO market is booming. Estimated at $2.91 trillion in 2024, experts expect it to grow at a 12.89% CAGR to reach $5.34 trillion by 2029.

What is engineering services outsourcing?

Engineering services outsourcing refers to the practice of hiring external experts to handle specific tasks within the product development lifecycle that you may not have the expertise, resources, or time to accomplish. Despite its recent popularity, ESO is not a new concept, and you can trace it back to the early 2000s with the automobile and aerospace industries outsourcing the development of advanced navigation, telematics, and infotainment systems to third parties.

Today, ESO is an essential element of strategic excellence for almost every global industry. Some of the major industries that benefit from business engineering services today include:

  • Automotive industry
  • Consumer electronics
  • Oil and gas
  • Utilities industry
  • Construction, industrial and civil engineering

Benefits and challenges of engineering services outsourcing

ESO and engineering support services have not only been beneficial for large enterprises, but they have also allowed small and medium businesses to be competitive while allowing engineering professionals around the globe to find exciting opportunities as well. Evolving as a strategic element of the product development process, ESO today can offer the following benefits:

  • Faster project turnaround times and time-to-market
  • Reduced overhead expenses and capital expenditure
  • More focus on core competencies and business objectives
  • Ready access to support

Although these benefits are significant, bringing an external partner into your product development lifecycle is not without challenges. You have to strategise to address these challenges before engaging with business engineering services. The major potential risks when it comes to ESO include:

  • Data security when sharing proprietary information with external partners
  • Potential impact on project timeline when onboarding engineering support services
  • Inferior work quality
  • Communication barriers and cultural differences
  • Compliance challenges due to different standards and regulations

You have to work with the outsourcing partners you engage to address and overcome these challenges to make sure ESO does not lead to a failed product.

Engineering services outsourcing use cases

Engineering services outsourcing is not without its challenges, but its benefits often outweigh the risks if you can navigate the ESO landscape effectively. So, what might be the right situation to outsource your engineering services and work with a trusted external partner?

When you do not have enough in-house expertise

You may need a specialised skillset temporarily and may not have enough time to onboard someone. Or your in-house team might be stretched too thin to take on new responsibilities. In such cases, ESO can help you complete the task at hand in a timely and cost-efficient manner.

When you lack resources

A particular project may need certain equipment or tools that you do not have. In such situations, working with engineering support services providers – with specialised teams and cutting-edge resources – can help you take a cost-effective approach to completing the task at hand.

When you need a quick project turnaround

In urgent situations where client relationships will deteriorate without a quick turnaround time, working with an experienced engineering services provider is crucial. In such situations, you can leverage their experience and expertise to quickly address any issues, preventing potential breakdowns and minimising revenue loss to bring things back on track.

When it is not your speciality but you have to get it done

You might occasionally need custom systems or tools to improve your operations. Building in-house resources and expertise for such occasional tasks – outside your core specialities and competencies – can be a waste of resources. Instead, you can benefit from outsourcing such occasional needs, collaborating with experts to ensure efficient problem-solving and leveraging modern technology to stay agile.

How can Infosys BPM help?

Infosys BPM engineering support services can help you bring together various enterprise IT systems – like ERP, product lifecycle management (PLM), and computer-aided design (CAD) – for standardised engineering processes and analytics-based decision-making. Our service offerings include engineering process support, technical publishing and authoring, PLM process support, testing factory process support, and specification services. With Infosys BPM, you can easily navigate the engineering services outsourcing landscape and leverage ESO to achieve strategic excellence.

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