One of the many subjects tackled during Computing‘s recent investigation into the CIO role (you can download the full report here) was that of partnerships. IT outsourcing has long played a significant part in business strategy, and we were keen to find out if anything has changed, what IT leaders look for in an outsourcing partner and how they find the right balance between in-house skills and those put out to tender.
Successful outsourcing contracts help organisations to punch above their weight, fill gaps in expertise and allow for efficiencies and savings by taking commodity services off the payroll. Companies and public-sector bodies are not using third-party services any less – probably the reverse – but attitudes to outsourcing are changing. IT and business leaders have certainly become more particular about what they outsource and more demanding as to how those services are delivered. The CIOs we interviewed placed a lot of emphasis on becoming an “intelligent customer”, ensuring that they get the most out of outsourced contracts, and making sure they don’t have the wool pulled over their eyes