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Outsourcing Terms - A Literature Review from an ISD Perspective
Karlstad University, Faculty of Economic Sciences, Communication and IT, Department of Information Systems and Project Management.
Karlstad University, Faculty of Economic Sciences, Communication and IT, Department of Information Systems and Project Management.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-1146-0996
2008 (English)In: / [ed] Golden, W., Acton, T., Conboy, K, van der Heijden, H. and Tuunainen, V., 2008Conference paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Information Technology (IT) has made it easier for firms to communicate globally. Improved IT capabilities and the increased global collaboration have been drivers of the growth of IT ´outsourcing´. This growth has resulted in a variety of IT ´outsourcing´ terms used to denote both global and domestic "client - IT-supplier" relationships. An introductory literature review showed that there exist no common standard definitions of ´outsourcing´ terms used for describing the contracting of ISD activities between a client and an IT-supplier. This may lead to confusion. The first purpose chosen for the paper is therefore to review how the variety of commonly used ISD ´outsourcing´ terms are defined in the literature. Based on these identified definition differences, the second purpose is then to propose a structured set of definitions of ISD ´outsourcing´ terms.

The review process of IT/ISD ´outsourcing´ research included two steps. Firstly, a literature search study was conducted. The literature search study resulted in the collection of about 240 articles. The second step of the literature review process included reading each paper. The selection criterion for the articles to be included in the review study was that the article should focus on IT/ISD ´outsourcing´. As a result, about 100 of 240 articles were reviewed. These articles constitute the majority of the articles studied in the literature review.

From the literature review, different definitions of the variety of ISD ´outsourcing´ terms have been identified. One conclusion drawn from the literature review is that many of the different ISD ´outsourcing´ terms are used as special cases of the generic ´ISD outsourcing´ term. The different ISD ´outsourcing´ terms found in the literature have been analysed and categorised based on a geographical distance perspective. Another finding from the literature review is that the relationship perspective often is neglected when ISD ´outsourcing´ terms are defined. Therefore, definitions from a relationship perspective for the majority of the ISD ´outsourcing´ terms identified are proposed. The proposed ISD ´outsourcing´ definitions provide a structured set of definitions based on both the geographical distance perspective and the relationship perspective. Furthermore, a graphical representation of how different IT-supplier locations, from the client perspective, relate to the definitions of six of the proposed ISD ´outsourcing´ terms is provided.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Keyword [en]
literature review, ISD outsourcing terms, information systems development, relationship perspective, geographical distance perspective, structured set of definitions
National Category
Information Systems
Research subject
Information Systems
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-22195ISBN: 9780955315923 (print)OAI: diva2:595871
Proceedings of the 16th European Conference on Information Systems (ECIS 2008), June 9-11, Galway, Ireland

Distrubution: compact disc

Available from: 2013-01-21 Created: 2013-01-21 Last updated: 2015-11-20

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