Trust and Coordination in Offshore Outsourcing: An Account of Intercultural Collaboration in a Danish and Indian IT Context

  • Thomas Tøth
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 8024)

Abstract

This paper reports from an empirical study of one of the largest IT and BPO offshore outsourcing endeavors embarked upon by a Danish company. Based on observations of structured, video-mediated handover meetings and follow-up interviews with the involved stakeholders, it presents an account of how the implementation of handover meetings affected Danish employees´ perception of their Indian counterparts in terms of work attitude, competence and reliability – and ultimately how these handover meetings increased the Danish employees´ willingness and ability to trust their Indian counterparts. Contemporary research on trust in virtual teams is used to provide a theoretical framing of the empirical findings. The paper furthermore draws on Sabherwal’s (2003) categorizations of coordination as being either biased towards organic mutual adjustments or towards a priori structures. Through this perspective the findings suggest that formal coordination can be seen as a catalyst for building trust in virtual teams.

Keywords

Outsourcing Offshoring Cross-Cultural Management Trust Virtual Teams Coordination Intercultural Collaboration 

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Thomas Tøth
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Intercultural Communication and ManagementCopenhagen Business SchoolDenmark

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