Shared service centers and professional employability

This paper presents case study evidence of evolutionary changes in business support functions resulting in a fundamental hollowing out of the professional space over time and distance, creating the ‘hourglass’ profession. In an IT-enabled, boundaryless world, many professional activities can now be undertaken, in the manner of the Martini slogan, ‘any time, any place, anywhere’. This paper aims: ⁎ To investigate the shared service center as an emerging organizational form with the potential to drive fundamental change in the nature and location of professional work. ⁎ To explore the impact of these changes for individual professional workers, and to highlight the need for a greater focus on individual employability as the driver of an overall career trajectory.