This paper introduces the concept of the Virtual Collaborative Organisation (VCO), as an evolution from the single, temporary organisation. A VCO is described as a structure where multiple organisations enter strategic partnerships through a collaborative virtual project. The paper undertakes a critique of existing literature on temporary organisations to examine the complexity of achieving strategic alignment within a multiple organisation virtual collaboration. Themes arising from the management of such organisations are discussed in detail, before the role of technology in negotiating strategic alignment within and across multiple organisations is considered. Finally, tensions arising from alignment are debated, and the conclusion is drawn, while the VCO offers organisations a useful route to successful collaboration, tensions remain in the quest for strategic alignment.
- Collaboration, project management, projects, strategic alignment, temporary organisations, virtual organisations