O'Reilly logo

Trust and Partnership: Strategic IT Management for Turbulent Times by Robert J. Benson

Stay ahead with the world's most comprehensive technology and business learning platform.

With Safari, you learn the way you learn best. Get unlimited access to videos, live online training, learning paths, books, tutorials, and more.

Start Free Trial

No credit card required

CHAPTER 15

Managing Complex Business–IT Relationships

There is little research on how to manage complex business–IT relationships, neither with an internal IT department nor with external service providers. With respect to the latter, most of the literature has focused on the desirability of IT outsourcing, not on managing the relationship. It is clear, however, that relying on procedures alone, like service level agreements (SLAs), is not sufficient for effective management of complex relationships. As part of a research program at Tilburg University, 14 case studies of European multinational companies with global or pan-European operations1 were analyzed in order to understand what factors or conditions contribute to the success of, in particular, complex outsourcing relationships. To determine whether a case was successful, we applied 10 measures of success. The measures included both hard and soft criteria. Hard criteria encompass realization of goals, realization of service levels, expansion of the scope of the contract, absence of escalation of conflicts, and contract renewal. Soft criteria include customer satisfaction, active communication, involvement, culture fit, and trust. All the investigated cases met at least eight of the 10 criteria for success. Also, at the end of the contract period, all investigated contracts were renewed except for two cases, which were not renewed for reasons related to external market conditions.

Although this study focused typically on ...

With Safari, you learn the way you learn best. Get unlimited access to videos, live online training, learning paths, books, interactive tutorials, and more.

Start Free Trial

No credit card required