Reviewing documents is expensive and tedious. It’s just a matter of time until some is offshored to India. I hear it is already happening but have no public confirmation… until now. 

The Financial Times (4/12/06) reports that “in an upcoming acquisition financed by a UK bank in the FTSE 100, the lawyers carrying out due diligence are in fact from India.” Law firm marketing expert Larry Bodine blogged about this at Corporations Now Outsourcing M&A Work to India and has the FT article on his web site.

Large firm CIOs need to keep an eye on this trend. If it grows, they will, at minimum, need to vet the technology offshore vendors use. If offshoring reviews gets really big, then extranets or workflow systems may be required.

And though not really the province of CIOs, forward-thinking ones may look for tools or services that can help assess review quality. Any legal issues aside, the main question about going offshore is the quality of the work. The only way to answer this is with a statistically valid comparison of review results from domestic and offshore teams.