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Analysing IT outsourcing decisions in the context of size, interdependency and risk

Willcocks, Leslie P. ORCID: 0000-0003-2572-9554 and Currie, W. (1998) Analysing IT outsourcing decisions in the context of size, interdependency and risk. Information Systems Journal, 8 (2). pp. 119-143. ISSN 1350-1917

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Identification Number: 10.1046/j.1365-2575.1998.00030.x


The main thrust of the article is to distinguish between four types of IT sourcing decision: total outsourcing; multiple-supplier sourcing; joint venture/strategic alliance sourcing; and insourcing. To illustrate each type, detailed case histories are used that analyse the reasons why specific IT sourcing decisions were adopted. Here, we consider total outsourcing at the London Stock Exchange; multiple-supplier sourcing at ICI plc; joint venture project sourcing at CRESTCo Ltd; and insourcing at the Royal Bank of Scotland. The trend towards outsourcing is increasing in all industrial and commercial sectors. However, client organizations need to become more aware of some of the pitfalls, particularly in respect of large-scale outsourcing deals to single or multiple suppliers. This is because the move to IT outsourcing engenders the need to develop new capabilities and skills to manage complex commercial contracts. We therefore conclude that, while many IT outsourcing contracts followed rationalization, cost-cutting and disappointing results from in-house IT provision, short-termism and current uncertainties over market, business and political conditions pose problems for many organizations in deciding future outsourcing arrangements.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 1998 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
Divisions: Management
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
Date Deposited: 26 May 2009 13:21
Last Modified: 01 Jun 2024 22:12

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