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Contracting-out in a facilities management context: an investigation of the advantages and disadvantages of contracting-out as experienced by user organisations; and the influence such factors exert in determining whether facilities management services are resourced in-house or externally

Owen, DD 1994, Contracting-out in a facilities management context: an investigation of the advantages and disadvantages of contracting-out as experienced by user organisations; and the influence such factors exert in determining whether facilities management services are resourced in-house or externally , PhD thesis, University of Salford.

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    Abstract

    The field of study for this research project is a recently established and rapidly evolving business concept, Facilities Management (FM). The focal theory for this project concerns the effectiveness of a tactic increasingly adopted by organisations as part of their FM strategy, namely contracting-out. This work places significant emphasis on the 'design' (i.e. the planning ) of the research project, in order to maximise the rigour of the study. In particular, a distinction is drawn between the design of the overall project and the design of the data collection strategy. The latter employs the multi-method techniques of •cas'e study and research review. The value of incorporating a looping or iteration element into the design in order to permit a dynamic and flexible approach is developed in some detail. The aim of the research project is to determine:- the advantages and disadvantages of contracting-out as they affect the individual organisations under investigation; the extent such factors play in determining whether the organisations adopt contracting-out; the potential for generalising the results across the case studies; and whether broader generalisations can be attempted. The following hypothesis for the study is developed based on the findings of a review of focal theory: 'The potential advantages to a User organisation of contracting-out discrete aspects or bundles of FM Services are likely to outweigh the potential disadvantages.' A matrix of the advantages and disadvantages of contracting-out is developed by conducting a 'research review'. The findings are ranked according to frequency of occurrence based on weighted averages. Six case studies are conducted as a means of collecting primary data. The data is systematically subjected to analytical methods, including testing against both the hypothesis and the rankings of the Research Review. Finally a cross-case analysis is undertaken. The findings progressively reached by this researcher have been tested out against knowledgeable audiences in two ways, viz: by presenting conference papers and lectures; and by regular reference back to a sounding board of key informants. The conclusions reached include: • that the proposition of the hypothesis is not generalisable; • that potential advantages and disadvantages of contracting-out not only vary between organisations, but in the way they influence the delivery of different FM services within a given organisation; • that factors other than these advantages and disadvantages influence Users' contracting-out decision-making.

    Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
    Contributors: Barrett, P(Supervisor)
    Themes: Built and Human Environment
    Schools: Colleges and Schools > College of Science & Technology
    Colleges and Schools > College of Science & Technology > School of the Built Environment
    Depositing User: Institutional Repository
    Date Deposited: 19 Aug 2011 15:31
    Last Modified: 14 Feb 2014 11:54
    URI: http://usir.salford.ac.uk/id/eprint/14781

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