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  • Writer's pictureAmalga Group

A Discussion with Jens Erik Gould, CEO of Amalga Group, on Future Trends in Nearshore Outsourcing

Originally published in Explosion



Jens Erik Gould is the Founder & CEO of Amalga Group,  a Texas-based nearshore outsourcing company specializing in IT, software engineering, and contact center staffing. Gould’s dedication to offering efficient staffing solutions, backed by a team of professionals from Latin America, helps U.S. companies overcome talent challenges and streamline operations, all while maintaining the highest quality standards.

Gould was previously an accomplished business, politics, and energy reporter with extensive experience working for prominent media outlets like Bloomberg News, The New York Times, and TIME Magazine. He started his career covering Hugo Chavez and the Venezuelan oil industry, later becoming a correspondent in Mexico City. Gould’s journalism career earned him many accolades, including two grants from the Pulitzer Center. Gould has also worked in the financial sector for firms such as Apollo Global Management.

Gould’s career, marked by a commitment to excellence and innovative solutions, reflects his dedication to making a positive impact on organizations and communities.


Is nearshore outsourcing primarily focused on IT, or are there other areas where you see nearshore staffing needs?


Jens Erik Gould: Absolutely. BPO, or Business Process Outsourcing, is another area where you’re seeing an increase in nearshore interest. That includes contact centers, where representatives manage customer interactions through customer service, technical support or sales assistance. BPO also includes other non-consumer-facing roles, such as data entry, billing, administrative functions, accounting, finance, quality assurance, and human resources.

Amalga Group offers these services as well: we have a division providing Information and Communications Technology talent, and another providing BPO talent. There is great nearshore talent for both.


Looking ahead, what are some future trends in nearshore outsourcing, and how do you see the Latin American market evolving in this space?


Jens Erik Gould: Well, nearshore outsourcing has existed for decades. But growth sped up during the pandemic in terms of nearshore. The remote work phenomenon drove a rise in platforms and acceptance of remote work that made it easier to hire people outside of the U.S., and companies began to realize the value of diversifying their offshore operations with nearshore.

Nearshore growth slowed a bit with the slowdown in the economy over the past year. But in 2024 and 2025, we believe growth will pick up again in both ICT and BPO in Latin America. You’re starting to see a phenomenon in Mexico, for example, where U.S. companies are not only looking for outsourced staff augmentation in Latin America, but they’re also going into Mexico and setting up their own business entities in order to hire dozens or hundreds of BPO and IT consultants. These companies are handling all of the HR, payroll, et cetera — basically setting up a Mexican affiliate. Big name tech companies are doing this, as well as consulting firms, large healthcare systems and others. This is proof that companies see tremendous value in the talent Mexico has to offer.

Right now as well, of course, there’s a huge nearshore wave in the manufacturing sector, particularly in Mexico. This has been driven by the U.S.-China trade war and the reconfiguration of supply chains. Companies want to be closer to the U.S. border, and Mexico is the best place to do it. You’ve got proximity, and there’s great talent, and it’s an ideal country for this. When you hear about nearshoring, often it’s in relation to manufacturing.

In the nearshoring of knowledge workers, on the other hand, there’s no physical product being churned out in a factory. So some in Mexico are starting to refer to nearshore BPO and ICT as “the other nearshoring.”

I think you’re going to see a lot more of that going forward where companies actually set up their own shop in Latin America. Because at the end of the day, there’s still a shortage of great talent in the U.S. For example, there are not enough engineers in the U.S. There just aren’t.

This has gone on in many industries, but it’s particularly pronounced in IT. It’s not even about cost in some cases. It’s not about trying to save money; it’s about looking for great developers, and they can’t find enough of them in the U.S. So that demand is leading companies to look away from the U.S. so that they can find the developers they need to keep their projects on track and keep their retention up because they so easily lose people to better offers, to other companies, and so forth. That’s a trend that I don’t see going away anytime soon.


What advice would you give to U.S. companies considering nearshore outsourcing for their IT and software development needs?


Jens Erik Gould: I think it’s very important to be comfortable with the provider, first of all, if you’re using an outsourcing company that’s going to build your team. Make sure that they are highly experienced in their industry, that they are vetting their talent appropriately, and that they do their due diligence so that they provide you with the best that the region has to offer. You have to have high-quality talent, and you need to use local providers who are going to provide that.

I would also suggest a partner that deeply understands both how business is done in the U.S. and also how business is done in Latin America. This is important because while there is a lot of cultural affinity, at the end of the day, there are differences in how business is done and in how people work. Some of those differences are nuances that are hard to see at first. It’s very helpful to have somebody who’s working with you as a partner who can point those things out so that you’re prepared for them and that you can manage your talent in the best way possible. You want a united team that’s reaching its KPIs and doing a great job.

And you need country-specific partners, too, because not every country is the same. Things are done differently in Mexico than in Colombia, or in Brazil.

At Amalga, our name comes from the word “amalgamate” because we provide a bridge between the U.S. and Latin America. We understand deeply how things are done in the U.S. and how things are done in Mexico and in other Latin American countries. We help our clients with those differences and understand those nuances so that their teams can be successful.

Another recommendation is to be very clear on what you’re looking for in your team. The clearer you are on that, the more likely you are to find talent that will have the desired outcome. The hiring process is similar to hiring in-house in the U.S. You have to make sure that you do a great job of interviewing. And if you have a coding challenge or assessments that you do for your candidates, it’s very important to use those — or to make sure your BPO or outsourcing company applies them — so that you can ensure you’re getting the right people on board.

Then, providing great training is essential, as is continuing to give them feedback — whether it’s your management team or BPO managers doing this. Because at the end of the day, the teams are remote. You have to give constant feedback and have a relationship where it’s a two-way street of communication, just like any employee. But it’s even more important when they’re so far away.


That’s important advice. Is there anything you want to add about what role you see nearshore outsourcing playing in the future of the U.S. IT industry?


Jens Erik Gould: It’s just going to keep growing. This is not a trend that’s going away. I think that the world is increasingly globalized in terms of the world of work. In the U.S., everything that went on with the Great Resignation and employees feeling more empowered to demand what they want in the workplace and to leave if they’re not happy — that has subsided a bit with the economic slowdown, but I don’t see the challenges of retention fully going away.

That, coupled with the ease with which you can engage talent outside the U.S. now compared to 5 or 10 years ago, is going to make it something that is always going to be attractive and isn’t going to go away. Nearshore talent is going to play an even bigger role in the IT and BPO industries going forward. It’s going to continue to grow.

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