Purpose – While strategic outsourcing decisions are crafted by senior executives, they are executed by middle managers and staff who may not share the vision or enthusiasm of their senior leadership team. The purpose of this paper is to provide a deep understanding of the effects of outsourcing on one of those stakeholder groups – the client project managers – responsible for the implementation of outsourcing strategies, and to identify practices to better empower and enable them. Design/methodology/approach – Interviews with 67 client project managers in 25 organizations responsible for integrating suppliers into project teams. Findings – Client project managers report 27 effects of outsourcing on their roles, including six positive effects and 21 negative effects. Practical implications – Senior executives who implemented the following practices had more success with their outsourcing decisions: provide enough resources to implement the sourcing strategy, be willing to change internal work practices, build social capital with key supplier executives and seek independent assessment of sourcing strategy effectiveness. Originality/value – The paper presents an original framework to categorize the effects of outsourcing on client project managers. The framework addresses six areas of concern: organizational support, project planning, knowledge transfer, process standards, managing work and managing people. The paper identifies four practices senior executives use to align and empower their employees to deliver the expected business benefits from strategic outsourcing decisions.
Strategic Outsourcing: An International Journal – Emerald Publishing
Published: Feb 20, 2009
Keywords: Outsourcing; Corporate strategy; Project management; Managers