The decision to send IT operations overseas is often viewed in the pejorative by IT line personnel, who feel they must continuously "skill up" or face the unemployment line. Though carriers are often reluctant to publicize their strategies, sources indicate it's definitely a topic of executives' conversation.IT offshore outsourcing, i.e., offshoring, has intensified, and from a business driver perspective, its discussion is becoming more commonplace in the boardroom, where it holds less controversy.

"If carriers can become more efficient in their back-end operations, they can potentially spend more money on their distribution channels, sales agents, offices, and electronic messaging technology that feeds leads back to the agents," says Susan Cournoyer, research vice president, Gartner Research, Stamford, Conn.

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