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Re: Use of foreign engineers

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I guarantee you, any engineer who decides to do this will find he is spending
MORE money, not less, to get his work done at the level of confidence and
quality to which he is accustomed.

Here are just a few problems I think you'd encounter:

1. You advertise, and select, a "Foreign Engineer". You select him based on
what? His resume? How do you check his bona fides? Ask someone who has worked
with him? What are the standards for referral, then? How do you know the
reference at the other end of the phone isn't a cousin? Remember, you're talking
to people over the telephone and via computer, who are in an environment and
culture that you know NOTHING about.

Talk to professors where the person went to school? Again, we're talking about
completely different standards of "competence" here. Many countries,
particularly in the third world, have a vastly different standard of competence
from the U.S.A. For example, simply getting the equivalent of a B.S. in
engineering there is, in the minds of those in that country, the pinnacle of

Many countries and cultures have a reverence for "academia" that is very
foreign, literally and figuratively, to our way of thinking here. So right off
the bat, you're buying a "pig in a poke" when it comes to selecting the person,
no matter HOW "cheap" they may come.

2. How do you really assert quality control over work that is being done in a
remote location? How do you enforce the schedule? You're paying SUPER CHEAP
rates for "grunt work". Does this person have the same aims as you do? What is
his objective? After all, he can already do design work and have it constructed
in his home country, even if he's straight out of college. In his own mind, he
is "already there" as an engineer unlike here in the U.S. where the concept of
"Engineer Intern" is very important.

Does this person have the same standard of care that you do? How do you know,
sight unseen?

I have had my OWN share of problems, as I've shared on this list, just with U.S.
trained junior engineers who don't yet "get it" and don't even see that I have
anything to teach them. Among the most egregious in that respect are typically
non-U.S. born engineers (who, again, have a very elevated view of themselves
just because they have an engineering degree; this because this is the culture
they grew up in). I'll be durned if I'm going further out on the limb with a
"FR" who isn't even employed or directly supervised by me.

3. You are simply going to find that you have so much "cleaning up" to do after
the FR has done his job, that you'll realize you probably gained very little in
terms of schedule and cost. We've all encountered situations where the most
effective and economical way to accomplish something is simply to "do it
yourself". And with computerization and office automation, you realize you can
leverage your own capabilities in a much more productive way now than could ever
be accomplished by farming out to FRs.

Bottom line: I am a BIG believer in the "Free Market", and I invite my
colleagues to "go for it" in terms of using FRs to extend your capability. I
simply believe that in the end, those who do will realize you really DO get what
you pay for, no matter the currency of exchange involved.

"Garner, Robert /SD" wrote:
> I'm fascinated by the possibility (likelyhood) of "Global Engineering", that
> is the use of lower cost foreign engineers for work in the U.S.