Innovation Risks of Outsourcing within Knowledge Intensive Business Services (KIBS)

Innovation Risks of Outsourcing within Knowledge Intensive Business Services (KIBS)

Paul Trott (University of Portsmouth, UK) and Andreas Hoecht (University of Portsmouth, UK)
Copyright: © 2010 |Pages: 20
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-770-6.ch110


The United States and European economies have witnessed an enormous increase in the amount of specialized business services, which now provide critical inputs to firms in all sectors. It is this area of the economy which has witnessed huge expansion and development. KIBS include traditional professional business services such as accountancy and law, but also a new generation of KIBS such as IT expertise and internet development. Coupled to this growth has been an increase in the level of outsourcing. Outsourcing was originally confined to peripheral business functions and mainly motivated by a cost saving logic, but has now developed into a routine strategic management move that affects not only peripheral functions but the heart of the competitive core of organisations. This chapter analyses previous research and adopts a conceptual perspective in investigating the innovation-related risks to the organisation that can arise from strategic outsourcing. It uses the example of KIBS outsourcing to highlight the increased risks that arise from a move from traditional to strategic outsourcing and discusses some measures that managers can take to attempt to control these risks.

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