Archive for March, 2009

Socio-Technical Systems: Users are the Kings and Queens of Information Technology

Tuesday, March 17th, 2009

Users are the kings and queens of information technology. One research model, Technology Acceptance Model (TAM) (Davis, 1989), predicts that approximately 40 percent of a system’s use is determined by what people think, and what their peers think about the system. People will use an information system if:

  • It helps them achieve their work objectives
  • It is easy to use
  • The quality of the system, particularly response time
  • Social pressure is positive to the use of the system

These factors are not sufficient to ensure full use of a new system. Effective change management is a critical factor (Al-Mashari & Al-Mudimigh, 2003) including addressing the needs of key stakeholders. This research highlights the critical need to develop strategic implementation frameworks that focus on key cultural and social factors.

So what does all this mean? Users are the kings and queens of information systems. Information technology groups that ignore this research risk implementation budget blowouts, non-acceptance of new technology, alienation of the IT group from mainstream culture and social systems, loss of credibility and unnecessarily high costs for maintenance and ad hoc fixes.

Davis, F. D. (1989). Perceived usefulness, perceived ease of use, and user acceptance of Information Technologies. MIS Quarterly, 13(3), 319-340.Dallas Burgess

Al-Mashari, M., & Al-Mudimigh, A. (2003). ERP implementation: Lessons from a case study. Information Technology and People, 16(1), Business module, 21-33.

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