[out-sawrs, ‐sohrs]
verb (used with object), outsourced, outsourcing.
(of a company or organization) to purchase (goods) or subcontract (services) from an outside supplier or source.
to contract out (jobs, services, etc.): a small business that outsources bookkeeping to an accounting firm.
verb (used without object), outsourced, outsourcing.
to obtain goods or services from an outside source: U.S. companies who outsource from China.


outsourcing, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
outsource (ˌaʊtˈsɔːs)
1.  to subcontract (work) to another company
2.  to buy in (components for a product) rather than manufacture them

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Dictionary.com's 21st Century Lexicon
Main Entry:  outsourcing
Part of Speech:  n
Definition:  See insourcing
Dictionary.com's 21st Century Lexicon
Copyright © 2003-2014 Dictionary.com, LLC
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Word Origin & History

in ref. to jobs going overseas, by 1981 (as outsourcing), from out + verbal use of source.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Computing Dictionary

outsourcing definition

Paying another company to provide services which a company might otherwise have employed its own staff to perform, e.g. software development.

The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © Denis Howe 2010 http://foldoc.org
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Encyclopedia Britannica


work arrangement made by an employer who hires an outside contractor to perform work that could be done by company personnel. Outsourcing has been a frequent point of dispute for organized labour. If, for example, an employer has a labour contract with a union, and the outsourced work could be performed by union members, then the union will typically object to such a practice because it takes work away from the union's members. Management favours outsourcing, or subcontracting, often to nonunion providers, because these activities can often reduce costs. Outsourcing can also reduce the number of employees in a collective bargaining unit

Learn more about outsourcing with a free trial on Britannica.com.

Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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Example sentences
Outsourcing has yet to make a significant appearance in this year's political
The trend towards more outsourcing is not confined to manufacturing.
As well as outsourcing their business systems, some companies are doing the
  same with the workers who operate them.
Outsourcing your data storage saves you on maintenance and might even bring
  upgrades along the way.
Related Words
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