In the 1980's and before, companies largely built their own back-office systems, writing their own code and maintaining an in-house IT staff to manage and maintain their networks and systems. Starting in the mid 1980's packaged application emerged in such areas as ERP ('Enterprise Resource Planning'). The packaged applications were the only way in which increasingly complex corporate applications could be effectively developed. Few single companies could afford to add the development and support staffs needed to keep up with the increasing capability of the computer systems available. The Application Service Provider model is the latest evolution of the way software is designed, delivered and supported.Currently the Application Service Provider is yet another ICT trend, which is being marketed by the ASPs as the IT solution for the future for every company. However, Application Service Provisioning is an unproven concept, where the suppliers of application services are making various promises concerning certain benefits they will deliver. Since the ASP model is a relatively new and unproven business model, organisations on the demand side are unclear whether the ASP model can be appealing for their organisation and whether it differs from IS outsourcing. The available literature and research reports that are currently available do not meet the need of these organisations, whether ASPs can deliver these perceived benefits. The objective of the research presented in this publication is to fulfil this need. To be able to reach this objective, research has to be conducted whether ASP differs from IS outsourcing. Based on this distinction, a critical analysis can be made to establish whether the ASP delivers additional benefits in comparison with IS outsourcing. The current issues concerning the Application Service Provider in the Dutch market, will also be taken into account.
This book is based on the final thesis Drs. S. ten Hagen wrote for his doctoral exam of the Faculty of Economics of the Erasmus University Rotterdam. He was supervised by Prof. Dr. Ir. Hans J. Oppelland of the department Marketing and Organisation, section Information Management.