Abstract for: Critical Success Factors of the Offshore Outsourcing of Software Development Projects: A System Dynamics Approach

This research focuses on the offshore outsourcing of software development projects. Little research has been conducted on the factors that would mitigate risks from the specific contexts of these projects. This study identifies and provides an understanding of the structural causes of issues that can occur and which impact offshore outsourcing projects performance. The main objective of this research is to propose a list of the most important critical success factors (CSFs) in the context of offshore outsourcing software development projects by providing a dynamic hypothesis based on the qualitative modeling principles of system dynamics. The analysis of data collected as part of this multi-case research study was used to systemically model the sequence of three software development projects outsourced to vendors in India by a large client located in North America. The study revealed six CSFs that promote the emergence of behaviors deemed desirable or limit the scope of events deemed undesirable, namely: the level of technical knowledge of the supplier, the availability of technical experts from the client, the level of detail sufficient and low volatility specifications; trust based on objectives, transparency of the vendorís internal processes, monitoring mechanisms for control and project deliverables.