Can it really be harder to employ a yokel from Kentucky than a yokel from Bangalore?
October 20, 2008 5:15 PM   Subscribe

How does one go about finding an Inshoring firm to off-load a large project?

I have looked and looked and looked, I cannot find a firm that will offer me bulk, remote, unskilled, and cheap labor within the US. I am looking for say 200-300 relatively unskilled man-hours per week (smaller than some projects, larger than others).

If have had no trouble finding numerous labor sources from Bangalore, or the Philippines, or some backwoods province in China, but they will not suffice. For reasons relating to the job, it is important that they be familiar with consumer products found here in the US.

Where do I go? What do I do? I can't exactly tour South Dakota, and get them piecemeal.

Any thoughts?
posted by milqman to Human Relations (5 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Labor in the US isn't cheap when compared to places like the Philippines or India, due to minimum wage laws and things like social security taxes and health benefits.

What you seek pretty much doesn't exist, at least legally. (Presumably you're not interested in contracting with a sweat shop that abuses illegal aliens.)
posted by Class Goat at 5:36 PM on October 20, 2008

Can you say anything more about what the work involves? There is certainly cheap low-skilled labor in certain fields, for example phone centers. What do you want these people to do? Do they need access to telephones, computers, the internet, letter openers?
posted by alms at 8:20 PM on October 20, 2008

Response by poster: Class Goat: Yes, US labor is more expensive. That is just something I have to deal with. It is necessary for the job. Still, hiring half a dozen midwesterners is cheaper than hiring half a dozen folks from SoCal. I would think that finding a firm that would let me do that would be pretty easy.

alms: Access to a computer with reasonable bandwidth, ability to identify grocery store packaging. "Hey, that is a bag of dog food!" (mark bag of dog food) "Hey, that is a can of soup" (mark can of soup)
posted by milqman at 9:16 PM on October 20, 2008

Amazon's Mechanical Turk [Wiki] is just want you want.
posted by niles at 9:54 PM on October 20, 2008 [1 favorite]

...and checking current tasks on Mechanical Turk, you could get people doing that for under 5¢ an item. I'm not sure how quickly that would get done, but even an a generous (for the market) 20¢, I would think you'd be saving all sorts of money.
posted by niles at 10:04 PM on October 20, 2008

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