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Coordinating Expertise in Software Development Teams

Author

Listed:
  • Samer Faraj

    () (Robert H. Smith School of Business, University of Maryland, College Park, Maryland 20742)

  • Lee Sproull

    () (Leonard N. Stern School of Business, New York University, New York, New York 10012)

Abstract

Like all teams, knowledge teams must acquire and manage critical resources in order to accomplish their work. The most critical resource for knowledge teams is expertise, or specialized skills and knowledge, but the mere presence of expertise on a team is insufficient to produce high-quality work. Expertise must be managed and coordinated in order to leverage its potential. That is, teams must be able to manage their skill and knowledge interdependencies effectively through expertise coordination, which entails knowing where expertise is located, knowing where expertise is needed, and bringing needed expertise to bear. This study investigates the importance of expertise coordination through a cross-sectional investigation of 69 software development teams. The analysis reveals that expertise coordination shows a strong relationship with team performance that remains significant over and above team input characteristics, presence of expertise, and administrative coordination.

Suggested Citation

  • Samer Faraj & Lee Sproull, 2000. "Coordinating Expertise in Software Development Teams," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 46(12), pages 1554-1568, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:inm:ormnsc:v:46:y:2000:i:12:p:1554-1568
    as

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    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1287/mnsc.46.12.1554.12072
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. N. Venkatraman & Vasudevan Ramanujam, 1987. "Planning System Success: A Conceptualization and an Operational Model," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 33(6), pages 687-705, June.
    2. John C. Henderson & Soonchul Lee, 1992. "Managing I/S Design Teams: A Control Theories Perspective," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 38(6), pages 757-777, June.
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