By Arie van Wijngaarden, University of Toronto Faculty of Law
Law students often talk excitedly about “joining the profession”. What many do not realize is that law is also a business. One of the most significant business trends in the past 20 years has been the development of Business Process Outsourcing (BPO). BPO transformed the way large enterprises work. Instead of doing tasks such as payroll, call centre management or human resources management themselves, companies now rely on a network of suppliers across the globe. These suppliers can be located anywhere – they might be down the street, on the other side of the country (nearshore) or the other side of the world (offshore). No matter where the supplier is located, dealing with an outside provider instead of an in-house team has led to major changes in how companies structure their business and the nature of the work they do.