Our research contributes to the quest for management action items that drive outsourcing management success. We hypothesize and empirically show that a certain piece of IT governance, the explicit documentation of roles and responsibilities of staff residing in the client firm’s retained organization contributes to social alignment in terms of interaction quality, shared knowledge, and trust between the client firm’s business and side and the outsourcing vendor. Our model is quantitatively tested by using data from 171 IT outsourcing arrangements in the German banking industry. We show that the documentation of tasks and responsibilities affects the service quality delivered by the vendor in terms of reliability and responsiveness, and that this impact is fully mediated by both client-internal social alignment and vendor/client alignment. This result represents a piece for helping practitioners to develop a better understanding of how to design their outsourcing governance to maintain and improve ongoing outsourcing relationships.
Wagner, Heinz-Theo; Beimborn, Daniel; and Schlosser, Frank, "Who is Doing What: The Impact of Task and Role Documentation on Outsourcing Service Quality" (2010). AMCIS 2010 Proceedings. 424.