Feb 23 2011

Ten Ailments of Outsource Relationships

Free whitepapers are available from the authors of Vested Outsourcing: Five Rules That Will Transform Outsourcing and the forthcoming book The Vested Outsourcing Manual: A Guide for Creating Successful Business and Outsourcing Agreements.

Author Kate Vitasek’s blog also provides helpful information in a well-written analysis of outsourcing gone bad, with commentary on these common ailments:

  1. Penny Wise and Pound Foolish
  2. The Outsourcing Paradox
  3. The Activity Trap
  4. The Junkyard Dog Factor
  5. The Honeymoon Effect
  6. Sandbagging
  7. The Zero Sum Game
  8. Driving Blind Disease
  9. Measurement Minutiae
  10. The Power of Not Doing

Suggestions for resolving these issues is also provided.


  1. Laying the Foundation: What’s in it for We?
  2. Focus on Outcomes, Not Transactions
  3. Focus on the What, Not the How
  4. Agree on Clearly Defined and Measurable Outcomes
  5. Optimize Pricing Model Incentives
  6. Governance Structure Should Provide Insight, not Merely Oversight

Additional commentary is available in this review of the economics of outsourcing. And free whitepapers on outsourcing are available for download on several related topics as well:

  • Unpacking Transportation Pricing – A White Paper Challenging Transportation Pricing Models
  • Unpacking Oliver – 10 Lessons to Improve Collaborative Outsourcing
  • IACCM and Vested Outsourcing – A Better Way to Structure Outsourcing Contracts

Great work from the University of Tennessee.  Almost enough to make you start singing “Rocky Top.”  Almost.

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