This morning on ESPN, I saw that the New Orleans Saints sent an copy of their entire playbook to the Minnesota Vikings. They were quoted as saying that they felt they were so far superior to the Vikings that they really didn’t think it mattered. In fact, they are considering telling the Vikings defense exactly what play they are going to run in this weekend’s NFC Championship game right before they snap the football, more or less daring the Vikings defense, which demolished the Dallas Cowboys last weekend, to stop them.
Of course, you shrewd football fans (and devoted ESPN watchers!) know that’s insane and they would never do that. Why? Because:
- they really want to win
- they realize sharing their playbook would give the Vikings an unfair competitive advantage
- they are not stupid
And so I read with some surprise this week that a new trend in business efficiency is KPO – Knowledge Process Outsourcing, which is defined as:
Knowledge process outsourcing (KPO) is the allocation of relatively high-level tasks to an outside organization or a different group (possibly in a different geographic location) within the same organization. KPO is, essentially, high-end business process outsourcing (BPO).
Most low-level BPO jobs provide support for an organization’s core competencies. Entry-level prerequisites are simply a command of English (or applicable language) and basic computer skills. Knowledge process outsourcing jobs, in comparison, are typically integrated with an organization’s core competencies. The jobs involve more complex tasks and may require an advanced degree and/or certification. Examples of KPO include accounting, market and legal research, Web design and content creation.
I can only assume that the next step will be TSO – Trade Secret Outsourcing, where a company will find a service organization, ideally located far away in another area of the globe, send them all their trade secrets and entrust them to keep them safe and improve them over time, while they continue to focus on their day to day stock price, investing in risky derivative securities to bolster their bottom line, and wondering why their customers no longer seem willing to pay a premium for their product, saying they can get the same products elsewhere, but with higher quality… Go Vikings…