IT outsourcing and firm-level performance: A transaction cost perspective

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Eric W. Ford, Professor (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
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Abstract: We analyzed the effect of the level of low asset specificity IT outsourcing on firm-level financial performance. We used transaction cost economics (TCE) as the theoretical basis to explain the effect of the level of network and telecommunication services outsourced on financial performance. An analysis of 1444 Integrated Healthcare Delivery Systems revealed that higher levels of network and telecommunication services outsourced were associated with superior financial performance. Specifically, each additional network and telecommunication service outsourced resulted in an average $3,120,000 in savings, a 25% increase in profit. In addition, increases in IT budgetary expenditures were found to be associated with increased financial performance. Our study provided preliminary support for the use of asset specificity to guide outsourcing decisions. In particular, IT activities that have become commodities (having ‘low specificity’) should be outsourced to improve the firm's financial performance.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2009
IT outsourcing, transaction cost economics, healthcare, IT governance, services oriented architecture, information management

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