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An examination of the logic applied to\ud commodity business processes adoption : a\ud case study approach

By Bradley Poulson

Abstract

This research examines in detail the ability (logic) of organisations to adopt commodity\ud work business processes. Four case studies taken from within one major UK retailer,\ud Boots The Chemists, examines how a single work business process, that of call centres,\ud has been developed in each of four different internal business ventures by studying the\ud process, decision, and alignment logic applied in each case. The research approach adopts\ud qualitative and interpretative analysis that includes longitudinal case studies. This\ud multiple case study approach has an embedded design incorporating the components of\ud work business processes as subunits to enhance insight. Data was collected predominantly\ud from interviews supported by archive material, documents, and direct observation.\ud Overlapping cross case, and within case analysis was undertaken, using Activity Records,\ud Strategic Choice Analysis, and concepts supported by Actor Network Theory. While it\ud might be expected that broadly similar processes located in the same overall business\ud context would adopt similar solutions in terms of commoditisation, governance, and\ud resourcing (architecture), the research found that in the four cases four quite different\ud approaches were taken. It is concluded that while the core processes were the same across\ud the cases, (i) the detail of the process, (ii) the variation in the contexts, (iii) the logic of\ud the decision process as they evolved, and (iv) the view of the actors involved (as to\ud whether each element could be treated as a commodity) combined together to lead to\ud quite different approaches in each case. Moreover as time progressed and experience was\ud gained and the situation evolved, actors changed their views (alignment) resulting in\ud changes to the business process. There appeared to be little transfer of knowledge across\ud different parts of the organisation.\u

Topics: HF
OAI identifier: oai:wrap.warwick.ac.uk:3514

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