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Scientific Programming
Volume 2016, Article ID 1319249, 18 pages
Research Article

Assessing Partnership Alternatives in an IT Network Employing Analytical Methods

1Socio-Economic Systems Engineering Department, Iran University of Science and Technology, Tehran, Iran
2Business & Management Division, Dundee Business School, University of Abertay, Bell Street, Dundee DD1 1HG, UK

Received 13 June 2016; Revised 1 September 2016; Accepted 15 September 2016

Academic Editor: Junhu Ruan

Copyright © 2016 Vahid Reza Salamat et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


One of the main critical success factors for the companies is their ability to build and maintain an effective collaborative network. This is more critical in the IT industry where the development of sustainable competitive advantage requires an integration of various resources, platforms, and capabilities provided by various actors. Employing such a collaborative network will dramatically change the operations management and promote flexibility and agility. Despite its importance, there is a lack of an analytical tool on collaborative network building process. In this paper, we propose an optimization model employing AHP and multiobjective programming for collaborative network building process based on two interorganizational relationships’ theories, namely, (i) transaction cost theory and (ii) resource-based view, which are representative of short-term and long-term considerations. The five different methods were employed to solve the formulation and their performances were compared. The model is implemented in an IT company who was in process of developing a large-scale enterprise resource planning (ERP) system. The results show that the collaborative network formed through this selection process was more efficient in terms of cost, time, and development speed. The framework offers novel theoretical underpinning and analytical solutions and can be used as an effective tool in selecting network alternatives.