Information technology sourcing changes in an SME: Ça Va de Soi in the cloud with diamonds
This case study presents the information technology (IT) sourcing decisions made by a Canadian small and medium enterprise specializing in knitwear, called Ça Va de Soi (CVDS), during the deployment of the second phase of their two-phase organizational strategy based on a “Bricks and Clicks” business model. CVDS has 30 employees and 5 stores with annual sales of around $CDN 5 million (2015). The case focuses on phase two, the “Clicks,” where an IT project, divided into two parallel subprojects, was realized: (1) the custom development of an ERP system, and (2) the creation of an online e-commerce. The project was based on an “on-premises” sourcing strategy where the information systems were developed “in-house” by external service providers. After several months of efforts, the subprojects were abandoned and CVDS’ activities were rolled back to their legacy systems (Part A). Pulling the plug on the IT project was a tough decision for CVDS who still needed the online store to be implemented in order to support its stores’ activities. However, CVDS’ management team considered this failure as an opportunity to learn from their mistakes, review, and transform its IT sourcing strategy (Part B).