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Managing business processes through outsourcing: a strategic partnering perspective

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Purpose ‐ The purpose of this paper is to discuss business processes as building-blocks of organisational capabilities and outsourcing of business processes as a viable management approach to building strategic organisational capabilities. Design/methodology/approach ‐ The paper develops a conceptual framework based on "strategic partnering" to successfully implement "global sourcing" of organisational capabilities and validates this framework using multiple case studies research. Findings ‐ The paper identifies business process management, relationship management and the outsourcing value propositions as the key dimensions for business process outsourcing (BPO) success. Research limitations/implications ‐ The paper is based on case studies of seven European clients and ten Indian service providers of BPO services. A larger survey of BPO clients and service providers may further strengthen the proposed framework and make the findings more conclusive. Practical implications ‐ The proposed framework helps both the BPO client and the service provider organisations in understanding the critical role of relationship management in realising the intended BPO service outcomes. It also helps the BPO clients and the service providers to understand the risk and business value implications of BPO value proposition. Originality/value ‐ The paper addresses a dearth of literature on BPO service provision and establishes the need for dyadic study of BPO services from both the client and the service provider perspective simultaneously for understanding the dynamics of this emerging service sector.
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Keywords: Outsourcing; Partnership; Process management; Strategic alignment

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2009-09-11

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