Monday, March 30, 2009

IBM's published patent application 20090083107 on outsourcing

Much is made of IBM's being the top recipient of issued US patents. Not so much is made of what is in the patents. Published US application 20090083107, titled METHOD AND SYSTEM FOR STRATEGIC GLOBAL RESOURCE SOURCING , is worthy of note.

Paragraph 2 states:

An important challenge in shifting to globally integrated enterprises is planning the location and capacity of the global workforce. There is a need to provide a robust and reusable sourcing template to identify new/expand existing global resource pools, analyze trade-off between qualitative and quantitative aspects across multiple global locations and model the global nature of resource sourcing. While resource sourcing involves both qualitative and quantitative aspects, existing methods do not adequately consider both aspects in combination. For example, existing methods may consider both qualitative and quantitative aspects of sourcing, but they may be evaluated using two sets of metrics which are not readily comparable. In contrast, this invention allows decision makers to quantitatively explore trade-offs between one or more qualitative factors, or between qualitative and quantitative factors. Therefore, this invention provides a more effective method for making resource sourcing decisions.

IBM's patent application is about outsourcing.

Claim 1 states:

A computer implemented method for determining a global resource sourcing strategy for an organization over one or more time periods, comprising:
incorporating concurrently a plurality of qualitative and quantitative attributes that influence performance of sourcing strategy with respect to one or more quantitative measures;
quantifying an impact of said qualitative attributes using said one or more quantitative measures; and
optimizing the sourcing strategy with respect to said one or more quantitative measures subject to one or more constraints.

The first inventor is Ching-Hua Chen-Ritzo of Mahopac, NY, who also brought us 20080208658, METHOD AND SYSTEM FOR ESTIMATING SUPPLY IMPACT ON A FIRM UNDER A GLOBAL CRISIS, and 20080177606, METHOD AND SYSTEM FOR ALLOCATING CALLS TO CALL CENTER VENDORS (with Laura Wynter). Such patents fall generally in what is termed business method patents.

One recalls the absolute clumsiness manifested by Bank of America in a similar application, 20080103804 . See IPBiz post:

"Assessing a country as a relocation option"

And, less anyone forget, IBM had a previous bad experience with a US patent application on outsourcing, "Outsourcing of Services" [appl.11/324958; US2007/0162321]. See previous IPBiz post:
IBM withdraws business method patent on outsourcing of services

One can only ask: what was IBM thinking?

**Meanwhile SpicyIP writes:

Research and Markets, one of the world’s largest research resources, has recently released a guide to Offshoring Patent Services to India. The report gives an exhaustive account of the Indian patent services offshoring industry, and deals with topics ranging from the present market players and future growth figures.

The report, first of its kind on the Indian market, provides an in-depth analysis of the buyer market as well as the Indian vendor space along. Based on secondary data as well as extensive interviews with key people (buyers of patent services, patent attorneys and offshore patent service providers), it makes a must buy for those who are practicing or otherwise interested in the area. For more information on the report one can check out the table of contents available on Research and Market’s webpage and/or the following link:


Blogger World of Vacation said...

Hi there,

I found your blog very interesting.My name is Dennis Peterson,a community member at Patents dot Com(a comprehensive free patent search engine).Will like to talk(through email) to you,is this the right time to talk about or should we talk during weekends ?

Dennis Peterson

2:51 AM  

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