Purpose – The last decades have seen manufacturing and services offshoring on the rise, often motivated by low prices and without consideration of other important criteria such as additional cost measures and risk. With wages in former low-cost countries and automation/robotization increasing, these decisions are increasingly contested. Re-evaluations of “shoring” decisions inherently create a need to re-examine theoretical and academic contributions to this rapidly changing phenomenon. Therefore, the special issue sought manuscripts that added to the exciting and dynamic body of knowledge on “rightshoring”. The paper aims to discuss this issue. Design/methodology/approach – The paper starts out by delimiting outsourcing/insourcing and offshoring/reshoring as part of a conceptual “rightshoring” framework to establish a common terminology and context for the insights gathered in the special issue. It illustrates that “shoring” options can be classified along geographical and governance dimensions. Findings – Both the geographical and governance dimensions are part of the rightshoring decision which is an important conceptual foundation for this special issue, as it invited insightful pieces on all of these phenomena (e.g. outsourcing, insourcing, offshoring, reshoring), acknowledging that these decisions are embedded in the same context – firms making governance and location decisions. Therefore, papers 1-4 primarily focus on offshoring, whereas paper 5 focuses on insourcing and paper 6 on reshoring. Their main findings are summarized in Table II. Research limitations/implications – Suggestions for future research out of the six papers are summarized in Table III. There is ample opportunity to further shed light on these suggestions as well as to cover parts of the “rightshoring” framework presented, that remain less covered here (e.g. insourcing and/or reshoring). Practical implications – The array of potential “rightshoring” options fosters clarity about the phenomena studied and their implications. The main practical implications of the six papers are summarized in Table II. Originality/value – The overall conceptual framework highlights the positioning of the final papers included into the special issue and provides guidance to scholars and managers alike.
Outsourcing/offshoring insights: going beyond reshoring to rightshoring
Volume number and page:
vol 47(2/3) pp.106-113
Journal or media source:
International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management
Tate W.L.; Bals L. (2017) Outsourcing/offshoring insights: going beyond reshoring to rightshoring International Journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management vol 47(2/3) pp.106-113