Staffing software projects with engineers from best-cost locations has become a commonality. However, distributed development remains practically challenging with many recurring problems, such as decreased productivity, low quality, and high unforeseen extra costs. One main underlying reason for these challenges is high employee turnover, although often overlooked. In developing locations such as India turnover is significantly large due to personal benefits from ‘job-hopping’. Why is turnover such a problem? Should companies stop sourcing to countries with high turnover or are there known remedies? This research puts turnover of software engineers in India in the spotlight and derives strategies to address it. We share experiences from two industrial cases, discuss important variables for portraying the actual turnover state and its negative impacts. Furthermore, we put forward ten recommendations for actively reducing turnover itself and lowering its negative consequences.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages13
JournalIEEE Software
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2019

    Research areas

  • Attrition, Global software development, Global software engineering, Hidden costs, Offshoring, Turnover

ID: 52589268