This Article 
   
 Share 
   
 Bibliographic References 
   
 Add to: 
 
Digg
Furl
Spurl
Blink
Simpy
Google
Del.icio.us
Y!MyWeb
 
 Search 
   
Beyond the Black Box: Knowledge Overlaps in Software Outsourcing
September/October 2004 (vol. 21 no. 5)
pp. 51-58
Amrit Tiwana, Emory University
The well-known black-box model of software development outsourcing is typically effective. The approach assumes that the vendor can successfully solve a client organization's business problem without either organization having to deeply understand the other?s domain. This article reports on a field study of 209 global projects that explored the black-box approach?s limits as well as potential solutions to those limits. The study?s key finding is that the black-box approach usually works well in routine projects but fails in projects involving novelty. Novel projects require careful deviations from the black-box model depending on novelty type. Conceptually novel projects require the vendor to deeply understand the client?s business whereas projects involving novel development processes require deeper technical expertise on the client?s part. The article also presents insights into the effectiveness of capability maturity, intense architecture design effort, and development coordination tools. A knowledge congruence framework is offered to apply the findings to software development practice.
Index Terms:
outsourcing, congruence framework, knowledge management, software development, software project risk, black-box development
Citation:
Amrit Tiwana, "Beyond the Black Box: Knowledge Overlaps in Software Outsourcing," IEEE Software, vol. 21, no. 5, pp. 51-58, Sept.-Oct. 2004, doi:10.1109/MS.2004.1331302
Usage of this product signifies your acceptance of the Terms of Use.