Will Outsource for Peace! IT Staffing Firm, Allshore Global Resources, is Promoting Cultural Understanding Through Software Development

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IT Outsourcing firm, Allshore Global Resources, is practicing a new kind of diplomacy by leveraging software development for improved cultural understanding between the US and Pakistan.

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Allshore Global Resources, an IT outsourcing firm based in Norman, Oklahoma, has become an unlikely champion for a greater understanding between the United States and Pakistan. They have seized on the potential that globalization has granted international business, and are leveraging their business as a counterbalance to faltering government-led diplomacy and media sensationalism in order to promote cultural understanding between Pakistan and the United States. It is diplomacy through software development.

Allshore connects its clients in the United States with developers in Pakistan. Within their unique model, developers and clients communicate directly (with American oversight for proactive customer service and to facilitate communication). The developers all work US business hours, are dedicated to a client rather than hopping between projects, and typically work with their client anywhere from one month to several years. This model eliminates a lot of the problems associated with traditional outsourcing, but it also means that the Pakistani developers and the American clients spend a lot of time working together. In the beginning, this presented a bit of a conundrum: Allshore found that often times, potential clients loved the model, but were wary of working with developers in Pakistan. Allshore took up the challenge and instead of seeing this as an obstacle , they turned it into an opportunity for change.

Many offshoring companies try to diminish the fact that they work overseas in order to better appeal to American clientele; Allshore features it front and center. They proudly display their association with Pakistan and publish regular blog posts and newsletters offering information about Pakistani traditions and holidays. At work their developers are expected to adhere to American business practices, but both clients and developers are expected to respect each other’s cultural differences (that does include somewhat different holiday schedules) and are encouraged to ask questions.

Allshore’s plan is fairly simple: give people a chance to learn firsthand and make a connection in order to form personal relationships based on mutual respect and cooperation. That’s right, their big plan for world peace is the chance to make an unlikely friend. But it works. Fear and mistrust are often based in ignorance; but when you can replace that ignorance with personal experience and give a person the chance to see someone as a fellow human (in their case a fellow techie) it can give them a whole new perspective. Ultimately, they just hope to add more positive voices to the increasingly negative dialogue surrounding US-Pakistani relations in both countries.

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Kelsey Bjornsgaard
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