Many governments and public organizations are turning to shared service arrangements to decrease costs while increasing service levels. This paper aims to elucidate the fine-grained challenges managers face as they adjust to working under a shared service arrangement.
A two-year longitudinal ethnographic field study followed the IT shared service transformation process at a large public university. Meeting observations, emails, documents and interviews were used in the qualitative analysis.
The research identifies 11 challenges faced by management undergoing a transition to shared services. The authors use a taxonomy of management challenges based on the organizational perspectives literature (Knol et al., 2014) to organize the challenges and relate them to prior literature.
The novel findings include the importance of changing organizational culture, balancing dual interests of cost and customer focus, establishing a sense of urgency and achieving process standardization through practicing when adopting a shared service arrangement. The results from a single case study may not by generalizable to other organizations.
This study provides a nuanced and fine-grained understanding of the managerial challenges of adopting IT-shared services. This unique longitudinal data set describes in nuanced detail the challenges faced by frontline managers.
Olsen, T. and Welke, R. (2019), "Managerial challenges to realizing IT shared services in a public university", Transforming Government: People, Process and Policy, Vol. 13 No. 1, pp. 76-92. https://doi.org/10.1108/TG-04-2018-0030Download as .RIS
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