Investigating information systems analysts' possession of tacit organisational knowledge
conference contributionposted on 2002-01-01, 00:00 authored by Merete Crofts, P Swatman
Outsourcing of Information Technology (IT) services which are central to business strategy may be risky. Managers have made the outsourcing decision both to concentrate financially on the core competencies and to rid themselves of a troublesome and cost inefficient department. More recent research has, however, cast doubt on the promises of huge savings. In this paper, we consider the likelihood that outsourcing may lead to the loss of organisational knowledge - that organisations outsourcing their total Information Systems operations may also have lost irreplaceable tacit, cross-functional knowledge which subsisted within the minds of the professional systems analysts. The findings of our research revealed that expert systems analysts possess a unique organisational understanding and draw on this knowledge to operate efficiently in their environment. We present a model that will allow future researchers to build on our findings and examine whether outsourcing can lead to a loss of organisational memory.