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Book part
Publication date: 13 August 2014

Joseph Soalheira and Greg Timbrell

This chapter discusses the constitution of Shared Services and the value of a consensual agreement of a definition for academe and practice. It explores the operating…

Abstract

Purpose

This chapter discusses the constitution of Shared Services and the value of a consensual agreement of a definition for academe and practice. It explores the operating principles and services, the concepts of internal customer and internal service, and their importance for the practitioner and research communities.

Methodology/approach

This chapter employed a broad review of the literature to examine Shared Services. The research team used NVivo as a tool to create a database of key articles and books to analyze the key concepts and topics.

Findings

There is a lack of consensus on the definition of Shared Services in the research and practitioner community. Additionally, the concept of internal customer requires greater exploration and understanding within the context of Shared Services. How Shared Services provides competitive advantage to organizations is also not well understood.

Research limitations/implications

This discussion provides a challenge to the research community to focus on the contributions of shared services to business management theory. This requires a consensus that is currently nonexistent, to ensure the correct use of the terminology and model.

Practical implications

By establishing a clearer understanding of what is Shared Services, the academic and the practitioner community, in particular, will gain greater competencies on Shared Services to support change management programs during the implementation phases and minimize implementation costs by lowering organizational and people resistance. The variants in shared services terminology create confusion which is likely to result in ambiguity during implementation and have practical implications on governance, customers and service, benefits realization and performance.

Originality/value of chapter

This chapter addresses the lack of agreed definition of the term Shared Services and the role of the internal customer and consequent internal service delivery.

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Book part
Publication date: 13 August 2014

Paul C. van Fenema, Bianca Keers and Henk Zijm

Sharing services increasingly extends beyond intraorganizational concentration of service delivery. Organizations have started to promote cooperation across their…

Abstract

Purpose

Sharing services increasingly extends beyond intraorganizational concentration of service delivery. Organizations have started to promote cooperation across their boundaries to deal with strategic tensions in their value ecosystem, moving beyond traditional outsourcing. This chapter addresses two research questions geared to the challenge of interorganizational shared services (ISS): why would organizations want to get and remain involved in ISS? And: what are the implications of ISS for (inter)organizational value creation?

Design/methodology/approach

The conceptual chapter reviews literature pertaining to ISS from public, commercial, and nongovernmental sectors. ISS is understood as a multistakeholder organizational innovation. In order to analyze ISS and conduct empirical research, we developed a taxonomy and research framework.

Findings

The chapter shows how ISS can be positioned in value chains, distinguishing vertical, horizontal, and hybrid ISS. It outlines ISS implications for developing business models, structures, and relationships. Success factors and barriers are presented that epitomize the dynamic interplay of organizational autonomy and interorganizational dependence.

Research limitations/implications

The research framework offers conceptual ideas for theoretical and empirical work. Researchers involved in ISS studies may adopt strategic, strategic innovation, and organizational innovation perspectives.

Practical implications

ISS phases are distinguished to focus innovation management — initiation, enactment, and evaluation. Furthermore, insights are provided into processes and interventions aimed at making ISS a success for participating organizations.

Originality/value

Cross-sectoral perspective on ISS; taxonomy of ISS; research framework built on organization and strategic management literature.

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Article
Publication date: 14 May 2018

Marianne Gravesteijn and Celeste P.M. Wilderom

The purpose of this paper is to illustrate how a newly constructed organization behavioral lens for participative action research (PAR) may aid a public-sector…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to illustrate how a newly constructed organization behavioral lens for participative action research (PAR) may aid a public-sector organization in successfully digitalizing its internal shared services. In addition, the intervention is aimed at fostering a continuously improving type of learning culture on the workfloor of a new service unit.

Design/methodology/approach

In a large Dutch municipality, the installation of a new digitalized process of offering internal services was studied. A PAR method, the so-called Fourth Generation Evaluation, was used on seven internal actor groups. This method enables various intra-organizational actors to reflect collectively on the ongoing change progress. Their explicit views on the change were communicated to all actors and the change agents.

Findings

The study describes the attempt of establishing a continuously improving learning culture during an internal digitalization process: substantial participation of the non-managerial employees was enabled. The paper highlights the practical value of the internal digitalization approach used, and concludes with four change process lessons learnt for those wanting to initiate a continuously improving culture on the workfloor.

Research limitations/implications

Even though the findings are based on one case, they may be of interest to other public/private organizations aiming to establish a continuously improving culture within workfloor units that interact, on a daily basis, with (internal) customers.

Originality/value

The paper offers a theoretical framework and a matching practical approach to the process of creating an internal shared service unit that aims to evolve further into a customer-oriented, continuously improving culture.

Details

Journal of Organizational Change Management, vol. 31 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0953-4814

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 9 October 2009

Jennie Sumelius, Adam Smale and Ingmar Björkman

The purpose of this paper is to examine the factors that have influenced the strategic role of the HR department in Western MNC subsidiaries in China between 1999 and 2006.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the factors that have influenced the strategic role of the HR department in Western MNC subsidiaries in China between 1999 and 2006.

Design/methodology/approach

The study is based on two sets of quantitative questionnaire data collected in 142 subsidiaries in 1999 and 2006. Qualitative interview data from 2006 are also used to shed light on the findings of the quantitative analysis.

Findings

The results indicate that the role of the HR department was more strategic in 2006 than in 1999. Furthermore, subsidiary size and the size of the HR department were positively associated with the strategic role of the HR department.

Originality/value

The study contributes to the literature on HRM in MNCs by examining the role of the HR department, which has received surprisingly little attention in previous research, especially the role of the HR department, in foreign MNC subsidiaries. The study also responds to calls for more empirical research examining the development of HRM in China over time.

Details

Chinese Management Studies, vol. 3 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1750-614X

Keywords

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Book part
Publication date: 13 August 2014

J. Strikwerda

The reason of this chapter is to clarify at a conceptual level the phenomenon of shared service centers. The aim of the chapter is to enable managers make better decisions…

Abstract

Purpose

The reason of this chapter is to clarify at a conceptual level the phenomenon of shared service centers. The aim of the chapter is to enable managers make better decisions when applying the concept of shared service centers.

Design/method/approach

This is a conceptual chapter, in which the phenomenon of shared service centers is being rewritten, from an initial cost efficiency level, into a constituting building block in the new nature of the firm.

Findings

The findings of this chapter are that especially the combination of financial shared service centers and IT shared service centers are an instrument to organize information outside the structure of the internal organization of the firm, as implied by the changing nature of the firm. Also shared service centers are enablers for new business models, especially those based on human capital.

Practical implications

Executives and managers that have a better conceptual understanding of the application of shared service centers will create more benefits beyond costs savings.

Originality/value

This is the first chapter in which shared service center is reconceptualized in terms of the changing nature of the firm. With that it is also one of the first chapter describing the changing nature of the firm in operational terms. The value of the chapter is that it will help executives to define more efficient change processes. A second value of the chapter is that it opens new avenues of empirical and conceptual research for academia.

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Article
Publication date: 1 April 2003

Georgios I. Zekos

Aim of the present monograph is the economic analysis of the role of MNEs regarding globalisation and digital economy and in parallel there is a reference and examination…

Abstract

Aim of the present monograph is the economic analysis of the role of MNEs regarding globalisation and digital economy and in parallel there is a reference and examination of some legal aspects concerning MNEs, cyberspace and e‐commerce as the means of expression of the digital economy. The whole effort of the author is focused on the examination of various aspects of MNEs and their impact upon globalisation and vice versa and how and if we are moving towards a global digital economy.

Details

Managerial Law, vol. 45 no. 1/2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0309-0558

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 3 June 2019

Erik de Waard, Peter de Bock and Robert Beeres

A typical governance challenge that has emerged with the introduction of shared service centers and other forms of service-related centralization within organizations is…

Abstract

Purpose

A typical governance challenge that has emerged with the introduction of shared service centers and other forms of service-related centralization within organizations is how to balance horizontal integration with vertical accountability. From a transaction costs perspective, this study aims to analyze the relationship between intra-organizational demand and supply linkages, asset specificity and coordination costs.

Design/methodology/approach

For this purpose, a case study has been conducted within a European military organization that has undergone major budget cuts, forcing it to start following a strategy of functional concentration with captive buying and selling relationships between internal customers and suppliers.

Findings

The research findings clarify that organizational hybridity may be the result. In a supplier role, the organizational elements are primarily concerned with efficiency, while operational effectiveness predominates when they are in the customer position. Also, the results show that focusing on standardized service delivery may sometime carry too far. When services are treated as being standard, while in reality, they ask for a more tailored approach, productive internal demand and supply collaboration will be put at risk. Moreover, the organizational actions needed to restore the internal supply chain’s efficacy will seriously increase transaction costs.

Originality/value

Despite being mentioned as a key governance category, actual research on the practicalities of internal captive buying and selling, in relation to the functioning of SSCs, is still lacking. To advance on this topic, the present research introduces knowledge from supply chain management theory, where dedicated inter-organizational buyer–supplier interaction in the automotive industry has already received academic attention.

Details

Journal of Accounting & Organizational Change, vol. 15 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1832-5912

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 4 April 2016

Benjamin Ellway

The purpose of this paper is to investigate how customer involvement in call routing affects the internal operations of the call centre service system by examining…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate how customer involvement in call routing affects the internal operations of the call centre service system by examining customer usability problems with the interactive voice response (IVR) system and the practices of agents used to redirect incorrectly routed calls.

Design/methodology/approach

A qualitative case study combined direct observation of live calls through sit-bys with agents and semi-structured interviews conducted with coaches and managers within 13 separate teams across all four functional areas of a call centre operation.

Findings

Customer use of the IVR system involved effort, capability, and arrival forms of customer-induced variability, which produced incorrect call inputs into the call centre. Shared norms and attitudes concerning knowledge, IT use, and responsibility for different call types within teams were associated with redirecting practices which lead to the problematic rerouting of calls. Problems with call routing and rerouting negatively affected operational efficiency and undermined customer satisfaction.

Research limitations/implications

The paper is based upon a single case study so further research is required to examine how problems identified are manifest in call centre operations of different size and complexity. The qualitative approach develops rich insights but these findings would benefit from a quantitative focus in the future.

Practical implications

The customer experience of IVR systems should be continually monitored to identify usability problems and ensure effective design, while call centre management should attempt to increase teams’ awareness of and ability to successfully redirect incorrectly routed calls.

Originality/value

The paper conceptualises the mutual influence of macro-level service system design and the micro-level behaviour of customers and agents upon each other. In practice, formal design decisions such as input uncertainty, decoupling, and interdependence patterns are continually reproduced or modified. Shared attitudes and norms of teams and their behavioural influence upon agents’ call handling practices are identified as a cause of coordination problems in call centres service systems. Internal rerouting by agents is also identified as a crucial operational process and important area for future research.

Details

International Journal of Operations & Production Management, vol. 36 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3577

Keywords

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Abstract

Details

Local Government Shared Services Centers: Management and Organizations
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83982-258-2

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Article
Publication date: 26 September 2008

Thomas N. Garavan, John P. Wilson, Christine Cross, Ronan Carbery, Inga Sieben, Andries de Grip, Christer Strandberg, Claire Gubbins, Valerie Shanahan, Carole Hogan, Martin McCracken and Norma Heaton

Utilising data from 18 in‐depth case studies, this study seeks to explore training, development and human resource development (HRD) practices in European call centres. It…

Abstract

Purpose

Utilising data from 18 in‐depth case studies, this study seeks to explore training, development and human resource development (HRD) practices in European call centres. It aims to argue that the complexity and diversity of training, development and HRD practices is best understood by studying the multilayered contexts within which call centres operate. Call centres operate as open systems and training, development and HRD practices are influenced by environmental, strategic, organisational and temporal conditions.

Design/methodology/approach

The study utilised a range of research methods, including in‐depth interviews with multiple stakeholders, documentary analysis and observation. The study was conducted over a two‐year period.

Findings

The results indicate that normative models of HRD are not particularly valuable and that training, development and HRD in call centres is emergent and highly complex.

Originality/value

This study represents one of the first studies to investigate training and development and HRD practices and systems in European call centres.

Details

Journal of European Industrial Training, vol. 32 no. 8/9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0309-0590

Keywords

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