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Crowdsourcing: One Step Beyond by Katia Lobre-Lebraty, Jean-Fabrice Lebraty

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4

Forms of Crowdsourcing

Crowdsourcing may be understood as a generic way to use a crowd for an outsourcing operation. The objective of this section is to examine in detail the various forms crowdsourcing may take, by presenting and discussing ten types of crowdsourcing operation.

As we have seen, the crowd offers many potentialities:

– ongoing presence;

– availability;

– speedy reaction.

In addition, the crowd can be seen as a resource that is abundant, cheap, and motivated all at once.

In the introduction to this chapter, we will briefly answer the following three questions:

– Which tasks cannot be outsourced to crowdsourcing?

– Which tasks can only be outsourced to crowdsourcing?

– Which tasks cannot be outsourced at all?

These types of question are very often raised when this kind of intervention is discussed with managers.

Let us begin with the last question. Can everything be outsourced? Proponents of the resource theory described above would say no. A business cannot outsource any rare resources it possesses. Managers do not believe strategy can be outsourced. Yet, what is the job of a strategy consultant, if not to carry out part of the strategic activity that could be executed internally? From our perspective and in our experience, all activities can be outsourced. However, this does not mean that businesses will all become nothing but contractual connectors and disappear. Even though we can find examples of outsourcing for the vast majority of tasks executed by organizations, ...

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