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Entrepreneurial Outsourcing: Motivators, Benefits, Risks and Challenges
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Business Studies.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Business Studies.
2019 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Our economy is going global. Open borders and the internet have created endless possibilities for companies to source products and services internationally. This phenomenon, outsourcing, is widely studied among large companies, usually referring to them offshoring parts of their operations to increase business and cost efficiency. However, thanks to platforms like Fiverr and UpWork, outsourcing has become accessible to anyone and plays a significant role also in startups. Using semi- structured interviews to draw on the experiences of nine entrepreneurs, we find that startups use outsourcing with different motivations than larger companies. Rather than cost reductions, compensating for skills that startups lack internally is the main reason for entrepreneurs to outsource. Increasing flexibility to react to the dynamic environment startups navigate in and the possibility to grow and scale quickly are also frequently mentioned drivers for outsourcing. Opposing the potential of outsourcing, most entrepreneurs see little to no risk associated with the process. Aside from the potential lack of quality of the deliverables, startups primarily fear the loss of intellectual property that could harm their competitive advantage. As this thesis shows that outsourcing within startups is fundamentally different from the traditional outsourcing of established firms, it recognizes entrepreneurial outsourcing as an individual field of research and defines it as “the concept of flexibly adjusting a startup’s access tocompetence, resources, and capacity according to rapid internal or external changes by sourcing products or services from external providers”.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2019. , p. 68
Keywords [en]
Outsourcing, Entrepreneurship, Startups, Internationalization, Externalization, Subcontracting, Offshoring
National Category
Business Administration
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-388877OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-388877DiVA, id: diva2:1335716
Subject / course
Business Studies
Educational program
Master Programme in Entrepreneurship
Supervisors
Examiners
Available from: 2019-07-08 Created: 2019-07-06 Last updated: 2019-07-08Bibliographically approved

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Type fulltextMimetype application/pdf

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  • apa
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