This edition of Management Strategies - the first of five planned special issues exploring areas of interest to bankers - looks at outsourcing.

In the past, our coverage of outsourcing has focused on core data processing. With this special issue, we cast a slightly wider net. A commentary by Edward J. Lynch of Wilcox & Associates, for example, looks at the farming out of marketing tasks, which is on the rise, especially at big banks. There's also a story about performance standards in outsourcing contracts. Bankers, we report, are becoming more sophisticated in their dealings with third-party vendors.

Our next special issue, which will focus on employee training, is scheduled for May. If there is one thing bankers agree on, it's that improved technology and reengineering initiatives will mean banks will be employing fewer people in coming years. And those who remain will need to be better trained to use technology and to sell a wider array of products and services.

Let us know how we're doing.

Jeffrey Zack

Managing Editor


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