Communications of the Association for Information Systems


Despite a steadily growing industry of third party providers, IT organizations to date have ventured rather cautiously into this new area of IT function delivery. This paper attempts to explain why this is so by examining the decision behavior and practices of a number of leading edge organizations. From this analysis, four key decision criteria were identified: flexibility, control, knowledge enhancement and business exigency. Based on the insights of the focus group, the concept of a maturity model for IT functions is introduced as well as a function delivery profile to map delivery options onto core and non-core IT functions. We argue that these elements should form the basis of a decision framework to guide the selection of delivery options. Following this framework, organizations should now begin to move beyond the exploration stage to develop more strategic, nuanced and methodological approaches to IT function delivery.