India's HCL Technologies has announced what it calls a 'co-sourcing' agreement with UK commercial law firm CMS Cameron McKenna.

The agreement will make HCL completely responsible for CMS Cameron McKenna's IT operations – from datacentre support, to network, security, and managed desktop services to application development, support and management, the company said in a statement to the Bombay.

IT infrastructure management and application development services delivered by a combination of CMS Cameron McKenna staff in London and dedicated HCL Technologies teams in London and Chennai. HCL says the deal is worth $20m (£9.76m), but there are as yet no details regarding the duration.

“This deal is a good example of the flexibility and innovation that offshore services vendors need to build into their contractual arrangements. While from a cost perspective it is often in the interest of both clients and vendors to deliver as much of the service from an offshore location as possible - there is also a strong case for both sides to consider the halfway house of a co-sourcing relationship, ” said Samad Masood, analyst at Ovum

“A 'co-sourcing' approach can provide the best of both worlds. Clients get to retain their internal knowledge and work with a supplier partner, while vendors get to enter into a closer relationship with the client, building trust and the potential of up-selling new services. HCL seems to have done just that with this deal. Of course for a more traditional, onshore-based IT services vendor accustomed to taking over more responsibility and more revenue in the typical outsourcing deal, such a prospect is not always going to be so attractive.”