Boeing’s 737 MAX Software Outsourced To India

Boeing’s 737 MAX software outsourced to $9-an-hour engineers in India.

It remains the mystery at the heart of Boeing’s 737 MAX crisis: how did a company renowned for meticulous design make seemingly basic software mistakes leading to a pair of deadly crashes?

Pieces of the wreckage of an Ethiopia Airlines Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft are piled at the crash site near Bishoftu, Ethiopia.

Longtime Boeing engineers say the effort was complicated by a push to outsource work to lower-paid contractors.

The MAX software — plagued by issues that could keep the planes grounded months longer after US regulators this week revealed a new flaw — was developed at a time Boeing was laying off experienced engineers and pressing suppliers to cut costs.

Increasingly, the iconic American planemaker and its subcontractors have relied on temporary workers making as little as $US9 an hour to develop and test software, often from countries lacking a deep background in aerospace — notably India.

Sales are another reason to send the work overseas. In exchange for an $US11 billion order in 2005 from Air India, Boeing promised to invest $US1.7 billion in Indian companies. That was a boon for HCL and other software developers from India, such as Cyient, whose engineers were widely used in computer-services industries but not yet prominent in aerospace.

Rockwell Collins, which makes cockpit electronics, had been among the first aerospace companies to source significant work in India in 2000, when HCL began testing software there for the Iowa-based company. By 2010, HCL employed more than 400 people at design, development and verification centers for Rockwell Collins in Chennai and Bangalore.

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~ by Joel Huan on June 29, 2019.

One Response to “Boeing’s 737 MAX Software Outsourced To India”

  1. […] But when profit is king, corners are often cut in the most inappropriate places in a manner that may ultimately lead to disastrous results. Because writing and designing this kind of data is expensive, Boeing outsourced writing of the software code to subcontractors relying on software engineers locat…. […]

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