Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to develop a conceptual model on the role that information systems (IS) architecture planning plays in enhancing IS outsourcing's impact on IS performance and to empirically test the model. Design/methodology/approach – Survey data were gathered and structural equation modeling technique is used to test hypotheses. Findings – The empirical test clearly demonstrates the important role that IS architecture planning plays in enhancing IS outsourcing's impact on IS performance. In other words, it shows that IS architecture planning provides a blueprint for establishing necessary technical and administrative platforms, based on which IS outsourcing can be effectively implemented to positively impact IS performance. Consequently, the key proposition in the conceptual model of the study has been empirically validated. Research limitations/implications – The relatively low response rate requires future studies to re‐validate the model to test the robustness of the findings. The fact that 75 percent of respondents are IS managers/directors may produce inflated responses on IS performance and future studies with more balanced IS and business managers' participation can help to further verify the model. Future research can also investigate how web compliant‐based technologies such as SOA and XML can enable high levels of modularity to improve IS outsourcing effectiveness for better IS performance. As to control variables, the extent of IS outsourcing and the level of IS architecture maturity may be incorporated in a refined model to better test the role IS architecture planning plays in enhancing IS outsourcing's impact on IS performance. IS outsourcing effectiveness may be added to the model as a bridge linking IS outsourcing competences to IS performance. A longitudinal study can be conducted to analyze the dynamics of how IS architecture planning can impact IS outsourcing informed buying and help one to understand the portfolio of outsourcing control mechanisms in a multiple outsourcing projects setting. Practical implications – The empirical support of the key proposition that IS architecture planning enhances IS outsourcing's impact on IS performance makes it very clear that IS management should make due efforts to improve their understandings of various IS components, associated business processes, and their interactive relationships for better IS outsourcing management. Further, the identification of the antecedents of IS architecture planning will enlighten practitioners about how to improve their IS architecture planning competence. Originality/value – The paper builds on previous research to provide further empirical evidence on the role that IS architecture planning plays in enhancing IS outsourcing's impact on IS performance.
Journal of Enterprise Information Management – Emerald Publishing
Published: Jul 27, 2010
Keywords: Information systems; Process planning; Outsourcing; Performance management