Why Outsourcing and Offshoring Decision Making?
Fierce competition and globalisation drive businesses to encompass greater economic cross-border transfer and exchange of:
– goods and services
– knowledge and people
– various intermediate activities.
This leads to the formation of global value chains. Advances in technology and new economic realities add to the multi-faceted and complex nature of the subject.
These developments highlight further avenues for understanding outsourcing and offshoring activities.
Emerging research increasingly suggests that firms are outsourcing and offshoring knowledge intensive activities to enhance their competitive advantages by exploiting external capabilities. For offshoring this extends to accessing local talent and expertise in host economies.
However, these decisions imply strategic, tactical and operational considerations for both the short-term and the long run. See for example, Dekkers (2011). To support these complex decisions, more inclusive models for decision-making are needed and, therefore, innovative operations research techniques may be required.
How can you contribute?
This special issue will generate a new body of knowledge to assist enterprises by compiling cutting-edge research on the decision-making tools and techniques used for outsourcing and offshoring.
We welcome novel, high-quality articles presenting original research outcomes that answer the following five questions posed by Hätönen and Eriksson (2009) and Pereira and Malik (2015):
1: Why do we need to use outsourcing and offshoring?
Advantages and disadvantages have been widely reported (e.g. Dolgui & Proth, 2013; Weidenbaum, 2000). However, relatively recent publications also point to backsourcing (for example, Kinkel and Maloca, 2009) and reshoring. This calls for both more appropriate approaches to decision making and building theory that informs decisions.
2: What to outsource: what to keep in-house and what to outsource?
Examples of decisions could include: What ‘core’ segments of the value chain are to be retained in-house? What could be optimally dispersed geographically, to allies and contractors? What is the influence in terms of advances in technology on the firm’s decision to outsource? What are the factors that influence a firm’s decision to re-shore and back-source? What are the various influences of outsourcing decisions on the local host economies and the competitiveness of its local firms?)
3: Where to outsource?
Which location(s)? Which supplier to select? What are the factors that influence the offshore-location decision when ownership of the activity is transferred to the foreign vendor?
4: How is outsourcing undertaken?
Examples could include: How does outsourcing/offshoring affect the firm’s behaviour, structure and organisation within the integrating global economy?; How does and can the relation between location, motivation and the firm’s business strategies be best captured methodologically to produce a holistic picture of outsourcing and offshoring decisions? How do new locations and the changing landscape therein transform the firm’s strategies of outsourcing and its competitive advantages? How does the formation of GVCs get influenced by the host government policies and the local institutional attributes?).
5: When to outsource or keep in-house?
Examples could include: How do companies decide when to make, and when to outsource? When should a firm continue to produce in-house? When does it start buying from a new supplier? And when does it continue to maintain an on-going relationship with a particular supplier? When it comes to choices, are factors influencing the outsourcing decisions firm or context specific in terms of what and where it is being outsourced? When it comes to timing are firms primary strategic objective to minimize risk and maximize value? In terms of ‘when’ do firms take into consideration increasing or decreasing levels of core competencies, competitive advantages, temporal or permanency, efficiency or inefficiency etc.?)
The methodologies used may have, but are not limited to, the following features:
– New mathematical models, optimisation models, simulations, case studies, empirical studies, exploratory studies, questionnaire-based surveys
– Novel applications of decision making tools/operational research techniques in the specified area.
Any work you submit should have not been published elsewhere.
Why should you contribute?
– Your article will be published in a widely read and cited journal (impact factor 1.693)
– Your research validated by a robust single-blind peer review process
– You can share your research with colleagues using 50 e-prints provide free of charge
– You can follow the impact of your research using My Authored Works
When can you contribute?
Now! We will stop accepting submissions on 31 December 2017 as we intend to publish the special issue in 2018.
How can you contribute?
You can find the instructions for preparing your manuscript here.
You can send your contribution directly through the journal’s submission site.
We will review each manuscript to ensure its topic is suitable for this special issue. Those that pass this stage will then be reviewed by at least two anonymous reviewers to ensure they conform to the high standards of the journal before they are accepted for publication.
If you need more information please contact one of the Editors directly. Their emails are on the right hand side of this page.
Manuscript due: 31th December 2017