Knowledge transfer in the transition phase

Review of the literature and implications for digital business strategy and agility

Authored by: Oliver Krancher

The Routledge Companion to Managing Digital Outsourcing

Print publication date:  July  2020
Online publication date:  July  2020

Print ISBN: 9781138489370
eBook ISBN: 9781351037785
Adobe ISBN:


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Knowledge transfer in the transition phase (the phase during which the service is handed over to a new unit) is one of the most critical and least understood aspects of outsourcing and offshoring projects. This chapter synthesizes the findings of 35 studies of knowledge transfer in the transition phase and extrapolates these findings to discuss implications in the era of digital business strategy and agility. A key finding from the review is that months or even years of scaffolded practice through learning tasks are often required before engineers have acquired sufficient domain-specific knowledge to take over the service. These findings suggests that, to harness the potentials associated with digital business strategy and agility while doing outsourcing or offshoring, clients may need to rely on long-term, embedded relationships vendors, on learning tasks and feedback, and on technologies that reduce complexity.

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