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What is IT outsourcing and why do companies do it: pros and cons?

You have surely heard something about IT outsourcing and are maybe even thinking to use it for your company. If you want to know more about what is IT outsourcing and decide whether you need it in your company, keep reading.

Outsourcing: what is it?

Outsourcing is a process of transferring part of the business tasks to a Managed Service Provider (MSP), for example, https://itsvit.com/. The customer company hires the provider company (or, sometimes one specialist) to carry out some specific tasks which customer can’t solve by himself or it is unprofitable for him. The companies most often use IT outsourcing services like web and mobile app development, cloud computing services, customer support services, administration services, etc.

Outsourcing IT services, as well as in the other areas, may be difficult for customers who are used to keeping abreast of all the company’s processes. But sometimes this is a necessary measure.

More detailed familiarity with the features of IT outsourcing will help you make the right decision about its usage.

Why do you need to outsource?

At first, we can take a look at the advantages and disadvantages of outsourcing. If you make a deal with IT outsourcing company you will have the next benefits:

  1. You will collaborate with professionals. Usually, providers concentrate on a narrow area and deeply explore it. So, your future partner may have specific experience and successful cases with tasks similar to yours.
  2. You will better allocate your in-house recourses. With MSP’s help, you can redirect the recourses of your company to other tasks and become more competitive.
  3. You don’t need to hire new specialists one by one. So you save your time and don’t need to expand your in-house team.
  4. You can reduce your costs. You’ll hire the professional team, which will cost you less than hiring new employees. Also, you do not need to buy some specific technic or equip new workplaces.
  5. You don’t need to prepare for problem-solving. Hiring the provider, you can expect that he will start working immediately because he has all the technical equipment and may have the ready solutions for your project.

On the other side of all these benefits, there are a few drawbacks. You may have trouble with management, quality of MSP’s work or leak of sensitive data. All of these disappear with an experienced and reliable provider and well-written contract.

Wrapup: how to outsource & get only the benefits?

To start outsourcing your IT tasks, you need to find a reputable MSP, whom you can trust. Try to find some feedback about the third-party company from their previous customers. Feel comfortable to ask any questions, especially about work details and successful cases.

You need to understand if this provider suits you or not. Then discuss with MSP the Scope of Work and project specifications. Don’t forget to sign the non-disclosure agreement (NDA) and other documents to protect your company and data. As you see, with a reasonable approach, IT outsourcing becomes quite an efficient and safe process.

Grammar or pronunciation or vocabulary?

What is the most important thing and what is the most difficult thing in learning a new language? My answer is always vocabulary.

You can express yourself with faulty grammar and less than perfect pronunciation. If you do not have the words you cannot express yourself. The constant battle to acquire enough vocabulary to read what you want to read, to say what you want to say and to understand what you want to understand, that is the hardest part.

 

The grammar comes as you need it with more and more exposure. Imperfect grammar and pronunciation do not prevent communication and enjoyment of the language. Lack of vocabulary does.

 

When I correct writing, it is overwhelmingly vocabulary, improper use of words and phrases that is the biggest problem, not grammar.

How do you accumulate words and phrases? You do so from input, from reading, and from listening to content that is of interest to you. You have to see the words and phrases often in different contexts. But then you have to use them in writing and speaking. Writing can really help because you can analyze what you are doing and which words you are using wrong.

It was the lack of a systematic method for accumulating words and phrases that motivated me to develop The Linguist.

Every language is worth learning

It seems that a good part of the language learning activity in the world is aimed at learning English. English is quite a young language. It is the combination on one small and cloudy North Atlantic Island of Anglo-Saxon, Norman French, Scandinavian even Latin and other influences. The collision of the different writing systems of these various languages and the famous “vowel shift” in England around the time that printing became widespread (15th century) all have contributed to the notoriously inconsistent spelling of English. Who would have thought that his language would become the most common international language? Who knows how long this will last?

Every language has its history, its culture and its charm. Every language has people who speak it, whom we can get to know. In the modern world where we can travel so easily and communicate cheaply by telephone or Internet we have an opportunity that no previous generation had. We can share a part of our lives with people all over the world in their languages. We can learn their languages more easily. Of course The Linguist helps make that even easier.

I learned nine languages and would gladly learn another nine. It gets easier with each language. There is no unlearnable language. Even a language as different from English as Chinese can be learned and give immense enjoyment.

Catalogs of Publications, Materials and Training Videos

Title:One-Stop Resource Guides
Link: http://www.ucp.org/ucp_generaldoc.cfm/1/3/43/43-43…
Description: Obtain the one-stop resource guide for your state or US Territory
Source: United Cerebral Palsy
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Title:Woodbine House Publishers
Link: http://www.woodbinehouse.com
Description: Publisher of a large selection of books, tapes, CD’s and DVD’s and videos for parents, children, teachers and professionals
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Title:Program Development Associates
Link: http://disabilitytraining.com/index.html
Description: Program Development Associates is a source for over 600 videos, CDs, DVDs and curricula on disability awareness, advocacy, developmental and learning disabilities, special education, physical disabilities, mental health, assistive technology, and vocational rehabilitation.
Source: EST
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Civil Rights
Title:Americans with Disabilities Act Home Page
Link: http://www.usdoj.gov/crt/ada/adahom1.htm
Description: This page is the U.S. Department of Justice Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Home Page.
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Title:Civil Rights: Ensuring Equal Opportunity and Protection under the Law
Link: http://www.disabilityinfo.gov/digov-public/public/…
Description: This section of DisabilityInfo.gov provides links to information on the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and other federal civil rights laws pertaining to people with disabilities, their families, employers, and community members.
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Title:Disability Rights Online News
Link: http://www.ada.gov/disabilitynews.htm
Description: This Web page contains monthly updates about the U.S. Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division’s activities in the area of disability rights.
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Title:Guide to Disability Civil Rights Laws
Link: http://www.ncd.gov/disabilityrights.htm
Description: This guide, prepared by the National Council on Disability and the National Urban League, provides a summary of federal civil rights laws that ensure equal opportunity for people with disabilities. The original source for this information is the U.S. Department of Justice.
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Title:Guide to Disability Rights Laws
Link: http://www.ada.gov/cguide.htm
Description: This guide provides an overview of federal civil rights laws that ensure equal opportunity for people with disabilities.
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Title:Disability Law Lowdown Podcast
Link: http://english.disabilitylawlowdown.com/
Description: Brought to you by nationally recognized leaders in the field of disability law, the Disability Law Lowdown Podcast delivers the latest in disability rights information every other week. You can subscribe for free and have shows automatically delivered, or you can listen to the show and read the transcripts from this site. Podcasts are available in English, Spanish, ASL. Transcripts are also available in English and Spanish. Recent topics include: Social Security, Transportation, ADA FAQs, and the Fair Housing Act.
Source: EST
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Title:My Country
Link: http://www.ada.gov/videogallery.htm#my_country
Description: In this one-hour documentary, symphony conductor James DePreist, who contracted polio as a young man, profiles three people with disabilities whose lives have been shaped by the struggle for equal rights. Mr. DePreist is the nephew of African American contralto Marian Anderson, who in 1939 was prevented from singing at Constitution Hall. He draws parallels between racial barriers and the barriers faced by people with disabilities.
Videos are available in RealPlayer or Quick Time format; also with Video and Audio only, Video with Captions and Audio, Video and Audio with Audio Description, or Video and Audio with Audio Description and Captions.
Source: EST
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Title:Disability Rights Virtual Exhibit
Link: http://americanhistory.si.edu/disabilityrights/wel…
Description: The Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History hosts an online museum of disability rights information and exhibit items.
Source: EST
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Title:JAN’s Accommodation and Compliance Series: The ADA Amendments Act of 2008
Link: (http://www.jan.wvu.edu/bulletins/adaaa1.htm)
Description: The new ADA Amendments Act of 2008 became effective on January 1, 2009. While the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has not yet completed the regulations for the new legislation, the Job Accomodation Network (JAN) has developed a publication and resource page regarding what information is currently available about the Act.
The new publication is called JAN’s Accommodation and Compliance Series: The ADA Amendments Act of 2008. This document will be periodically updated as additional information is made public. A full listing of JAN’s ADA Amendments Act of 2008 resources can be found at: http://www.jan.wvu.edu/LINKS/adalinks.htm
Source: EST
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Title:Disability History: An Important Part of America’s Heritage
Link: http://www.dol.gov/odep/documents/Disability%20His…
Description: Teaching children about the contributions of particular populations to our nation’s history, such as women and people of various ethnic backgrounds, has been recognized as important through the declaration of dedicated months as well as other educational programs. Disability history, however, has been largely ignored in school curricula. This is particularly paradoxical since anyone, regardless of age, race, or heritage, may become a part of the population of people with disabilities at any time. But the tide is beginning to turn—due mainly to the grassroots efforts of young disability leaders.
This document gives an overview of several youth-led state efforts and the positive outcomes that result from the involvement in such efforts. The document also includes an extensive list of resources.
Source: NCLD/Youth
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Title:New Disability Law Handbook
Link: http://www.swdbtac.org/html/publications/dlh/disab…
Description: The Disability Law Handbook, from Disability.gov, provides information on rights and obligations under federal disability laws, including an overview of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act. The entire publication can be downloaded in PDF format by clicking the above link.
Source: EST
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Everyone is a linguist. Everyone has their price.

When I was 17 I could only speak one language. Now I speak 9. I am convinced that most people can learn to speak many languages. We are all potential linguists.

I am astounded at how strongly people cling to the belief that they cannot learn. This belief then becomes a self-fulfilling prophesy.

I like to ask “if I gave you a million dollars to learn the language in 6 months, or if your life depended on it, do you think you could learn?” Then the answer is yes. I guess like in the story about the old man and the pretty young socialite at the cocktail party, everyone has their price.

Conversation class

We had a conversation class tonight with about 20 English learners, in Blenz cafe on the corner of Richards and Hastings in Vancouver. It has been raining hard the last few days and I am concerned about the snow conditions in the nearby mountains, especially Whistler.

People like to get together and talk in a foreign language. Really I should run a bistro where people can just meet and talk in English or other languages they are learning. I also like meeting people and talking, in whatever language. Yet just getting together to talk, as important as it is, is not enough. People still need to work at their language. You cannot get away from listening and reading and deliberately adding to your vocabulary of words and phrases.

I had been listening to  a Chinese CD of The Romance of the Three Kingdoms, the famous Chinese epic novel. Now I am listening to  a history of Sweden in Swedish. I also have the book which is word for word the same as the CDs. It is very interesting to learn about the history of Sweden and I have the impression that I am learning better than if I just read the book. After listening to a chapter I read the book. This is really a very effective way to learn anything, even in your own language. It is even more effective for learning a foreign language.

I think that the combination of CDs and books could replace much of what is taught in lectures at universities. With an Internet chatroom, voice and text, with other learners and the professor, who needs to attend classes. The rest of the learning should take place in a cafe or bar or discussion place.

Phrases, the key to natural learning

Native speakers of any language know naturally which words belong together. They have heard their own language so often and in so many situations that they can naturally put words together in a way that sounds effective. The foreign learner cannot do this.

Unfortunately most language schools teach vocabulary and grammar. Vocabulary is very important. You need words, not only the high frequency words, but also the less frequent words, in order to be able to deal with many situations. But research has shown that you cannot learn them from lists or in groups. You cannot learn by studying the terms for the parts of the body, or what to say at the train station, or the colours, or opposites or words that mean the same thing. This will only confuse you. You need to learn words in context.

The ideal context is the phrase. You can learn a phrase to go with each new word you learn. Soon you will have a variety of phrases with the new words you have learned. Each phrases gives the word a slightly different meaning. Each phrase is a proven way of using the new word in combination with other words.

Every sentence is unique, but phrases repeat themselves often. A phrase is any group of two or more, (usually no more than five) words that naturally belong together and can be used in many situations.

Learn to look for phrases, save them and learn them. One word of caution is necessary, however. The phrases must come from meaningful content that you are listening to and reading. Free examples of sentences and phrases from dictionaries are false friends. You think you are learning but you are not. You need to find your own phrases as you discover the language from interesting content. That is why at The Linguist we let you create your own database of phrases from the real life content that you find in our large library, or from other articles that you find on the Internet.

The false friends of language learning

There must be millions if not hundreds of millions of people who study languages. Most of them are frustrated and do not achieve fluency. I believe it is the false friends of language learning that let them down.

These false friends are:

the classroom

text books

grammar explanations

exercises and drills

vocabulary lists and books

conversation class

thick dictionaries

Why are these false friends? Because they are not natural. They do not offer real communication in the language. I am sure that most people who are fluent in a second or third language did not learn from these false friends. They learned by listening, reading and communicating in the language on subjects of interests, in other words, for real. Maybe they learned from friends, from TV, or from movies or from necessity, but the key is that they were motivated to learn. They took over the learning process and did not rely on the false friends. Certainly I was only able to achieve fluency in nine languages by studying on my own.

Anybody out there with some language learning experience to share?

Some myths of language learning

Along with the false friends of language learning, there are myths. These also hold people back. Here I will mention just a few.

“You have to have a talent for languages in order to learn.”

Is it likely that this talent for languages exists only with certain nations? Is it likely that the Dutch and Swedes are all born with this talent for languages whereas the English are not? Is it likely that Singaporeans are all talented while the Chinese are not? I do not think so. Instead it is a matter of attitude and exposure to the language.

“I have to go to the country to learn the language.”

This is not so. I grew up in Montreal surrounded by French, but I was not interested in learning French until I reached the age of 17. When I became motivated, I learned. There are many immigrants in Canada who never learn to speak well. Yet I have met people in places like China who were absolutely fluent in English. I learned to become fluent in Mandarin in a city where the language was not spoken, Hong Kong.

Exposure alone will not do it. If you are motivated and know how to create your own interesting language world to learn from, you can learn anywhere. This is the key to effective language learning. I know. I have done it many times.

“You have to have an ear for music to learn languages.”

I lived in Japan for nine years. I often went to karaoke. Most Japanese men at karaoke bars are good singers, and have a good ear for music. Very few of them are good at languages. They either are not motivated or do not have an effective system for learning.

” My teacher is no good.”

It is not the school or teacher that will determine language learning success. It is the learner. The greatest role of the teacher is to stimulate the learner, to help the learner become a truly motivated independent learner. It is still up to the learner to learn.

” Only children can learn languages well.”

Children are uninhibited, encouraged and not corrected, spend a lot of time using a new language with their peers, and do not hide in their own language and culture while resisting a new language as adults do. On the other hand adults know more, have a wider vocabulary and can learn faster. If they can imitate the attitude of the child and take advantage of their own greater knowledge and experience, they will learn faster than any child. They may not be able to achieve accent free pronunciation but that is the only area where they are at a disadvantage. Even there, it is a matter of attitude.

Education

Title:Check & Connect
Link: http://ici.umn.edu/checkandconnect/default.html
Description: The Check & Connect model uses mentors to promote students’ engagement with school, reduce dropout, and increase school completion. The Check & Connect Web site offers information regarding the Check & Connect model, current projects and initiatives, related publications, upcoming presentations and workshops, and staff.
The Check & Connect Web site contains information directed towards educators, researchers, administrators, and others interested in helping youth remain engaged in school and on track to graduate.
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Title:Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)
Link: http://idea.ed.gov/explore/home
Description: U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs’ (OSEP’s) IDEA Web site provides information related to The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and Individualized Education Programs (IEP’s).
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Title:National Center on Educational Outcomes
Link: http://cehd.umn.edu/nceo
Description: The National Center on Educational Outcomes (NCEO) provides national leadership in the participation of students with disabilities in national and state assessments, standards-setting efforts, and graduation requirements. The NCEO Web site provides links to publications related to educational outcomes and contains a link to the NCEO Data Viewer, which lets you view information related to students with disabilities and create individualized reports based on criteria that you can choose.
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Title:NCLB and IDEA: What Parents of Students with Disabilities Need to Know and Do
Link: http://cehd.umn.edu/nceo/OnlinePubs/Parents.pdf
Description: The No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) are two of the nation’s most important federal laws relating to the education of children. While NCLB seeks to improve the education of all children – with an emphasis on children from low-income families – IDEA focuses on the individual child and seeks to ensure specialized services for children with disabilities so that they may benefit from education. This document describes the NCLB and IDEA and gives an overview of information that students with disabilities and their parents should know about the NCLB and IDEA.
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Title:Student’s Guide to the IEP
Link: http://www.nichcy.org/pubs/stuguide/st1.pdf
Description: This document provides information a student needs to know to be part of their Individual Education Program team.
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Title:Preparing for College
Link: http://www.ncld.org/content/view/894/
Description: This article, written by Liz Getzel and available on the National Center for Learning Disabilities Web site, discusses what high school students with disabilities need to know about preparing for college, including specific activities for academic preparation, tips on exploring college environments, and questions to ask regarding campus services and supports.
Source: EST
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Title:ThinkCollege.net
Link: http://www.thinkcollege.net
Description: The ThinkCollege.net Web site provides information and links to anyone interested in finding out more about the possibilities for youth with intellectual disabilities considering college. The Web site is divided into sections for students, family members, and professionals and features a searchable database of postsecondary education programs that support youth with intellectual disabilities, a discussion board designed by students – for students who are interested in sharing college experiences, the “Choice for Everyone” Listserv hosted by the Institute for Community Inclusion, and a resource section.
Source: EST
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Title:Going to College
Link: http://www.going-to-college.org/
Description: This new Web site contains information about living college life with a disability. It is designed for high school students. The site provides video clips, activities, and resources that can help them get a head start in planning for college. Video interviews with college students with disabilities offer a way to hear firsthand from students with disabilities who have been successful. Modules include activities that will help students explore more about themselves, learn what to expect from college, and equip them with important considerations and tasks to complete when planning for college.
Source: ADD
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Title:NYLN Teleconference on Education
Link: http://www.ilru.org/html/training/webcasts/archive…
Description: A National Teleconference and Webcast presented by the National Youth Leadership Network (NYLN) was given on April 14, 2009. Please click on the above link to access the archived Webcast and transcript.
AGENDA:
• Independent Living: Links to life after high school, post-secondary and beyond!
• Transition: Links between school and career goals!
• Education for all: Individuals with cognitive disabilities succeeding in post-secondary education!
• Guest speaker: Micah Fialka-Feldman, Disability Rights Advocate
• Guest Speaker: Jeff Moyer, Public speaker and Human Rights Advocate
Source: NYLN
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Title:Graduation Requirements and Diploma Options
Link: http://www.ncwd-youth.info/resources_&_Publication…
Description: This InfoBrief, Graduation Requirements and Diploma Options for Students with Disabilities: What Families and Advocates Need to Know, was developed by the National Collaborative on Workforce and Disability for Youth (NCWD/Y). It explores the importance of making informed decisions about diploma options, understanding the consequences of graduating with different types of diplomas as well as the need for youth, families, and Individual Education Program (IEP) teams to consider these issues early.
Source: NCLD/Youth
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Title:Student Loan Income-Based Repayment Program
Link: http://projectonstudentdebt.org/files/pub/July_1_2…
Description: On July 1, a major new student loan repayment option, Income-Based Repayment, will become available for the first time, providing much-needed financial relief for hundreds of thousands of federal student loan borrowers. There is also good news for students still in college, including more money for Pell Grants and lower interest rates for some student loans.
Income-Based Repayment (IBR) caps monthly loan payments based on income and family size, and forgives any debt and interest remaining after 25 years of payments.
Click on the above link for more information about IBR – including a calculator to estimate eligibility and payments, and a short animated video (“Ditch Your Debt Gremlin”) explaining the program.
Source: EST
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