I was fortunate enough to be a recipient of the Queensland University of Technology’s (QUT) Dean’s Scholar scholarship for 2009, an accelerated Bachelor/Honours degree for school-leavers. Having an Honours component, academic research was a core component of this degree (if you want to skip to the end, a full copy of my thesis is here).
My final year (February 2011-February 2012) saw me conduct my Honours research, with a focus on Multivendor Outsourcing arrangements in the context of the Information Technology (IT) industry. Outsourcing operations tend to be a contentious issue in the IT industry, with many professionals and academics having very strong, often highly-oppositional viewpoints on the topic. Multivendor Outsourcing (also “Multivendoring”; the phenomena where two or more suppliers provide a service or set of related services to a buyer on a contractual, ongoing basis) was an area well understood by practitioners and professionals, but not so well researched in the academe.
I set out (with the support and guidance of my supervisors) to look into Multivendoring in the IT industry and what specifically made this type of outsourcing successful.
What are the important contingencies a firm must consider when deciding to
employ a multivendoring strategy?
This question guided my research through the development of a five-part contingency framework. Review of existing literature, inquiry with two clients, three vendors and one consulting firm resulted in the development of this five-part model to include 121 contingencies, driven out of 29 research findings. The result is a framework capturing the important factors and risks (labelled “contingencies” in the research) in an organised way.
I want this work to drive further investigation and spark further interest in understanding the multivendoring phenomenon, which is a multi-billion dollar, highly globalised industry that drives business worldwide.
You can find a copy of the full thesis here.