The end of offshoring?

A new programming language created by a UK firm is promising to reverse the flow of IT projects from India back to Britain.

From records to communications, IT has made companies work more efficiently, in every aspect. In particular, when investing in bespoke software, bosses can achieve the most appropriate IT system to meet the demands of their business. But that needs skilled programmers – who are not cheap or easy to find.

That has forced many to look offshore to outsource the work. The argument supporting offshoring is simple: rather than costly work in the UK, find the same expertise abroad at a fraction of the price.

But there are drawbacks. Culture and language barriers muddy communication between a client and provider. Also, the lack of regulation and standard testing leads to frustration, lots of overhead costs and hassle to the client.

But there may be an alternative. A London-based company claims its invention can change the equations. Geeks Ltd has created a programming language it says is six times faster than traditional models, meaning software can be built cheaper here in the UK, making offshore frustration a thing of the past.

Building applications using traditional tools is slow and error-prone. It takes months to complete a project. However the language invented by Geeks – called M# – automates over 90 per cent of the work, enabling the project to be completed at a fraction of the cost. Also, it’s low risk to adopt as it generates standard Microsoft.NET code.

Having found this claim to be too bold by some, we decided to put it to the test. We gave a Geeks developer the task of creating a customer-relationship management system, covering the process of advertising and editorial work for newspaper supplements.

It took him just over an hour to build a solution that worked. He said it would take another few hours to polish and perfect it, with a total cost of £750. We sent the same task to another four companies and their responses varied from three to five weeks, with costs of up to £20,000.

With such a huge reduction in time and costs of software development, is Geeks going to change the flow of IT projects back to our shores with its M# technology?

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