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Multilevel analysis of ambidexterity and tagging of specialised projects in project-based information technology firms
Published in Emerald Publishing
2017
Volume: 37
   
Issue: 9
Pages: 1185 - 1206
Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to understand the expression of ambidexterity at the “between” projects level as well as the “within” project level in project-based information technology firms (PBITF). The research also provides a framework for the classification of specialised projects. This classification is essential to clarify the level of attention the project will receive with respect to the appropriation of resources and the requisite management bandwidth.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper draws on a nine-month long field-based qualitative study and ensures a rigorous triangulation of the findings through an analysis of archival data and actual project artefacts.

Findings

The authors bring forth three critical implications for practice. First, strategizing ambidexterity at the level of “between” projects and “within” projects is heavily dependent on the interaction among distributed actors and partners. Second, routines and actions to deal with manpower constraints are completely different at these two levels. Lastly, the classification framework of specialised projects proposed here should enable firms to appropriately apportion resources to engagements that are strategic in nature.

Originality/value

The study extends the concept of ambidexterity to the “within” project level and finds it relevant at the lowest level in the project-based structure. Also, the framework for the classification of specialised projects that is provided will assist decision makers in PBIT firms to decide the organisational response to such projects.

About the journal
JournalData powered by TypesetInternational Journal of Operations & Production Management
PublisherData powered by TypesetEmerald Publishing
ISSN0144-3577
Open AccessNo