On the Embeddedness of ERP Systems: An Institutional Analysis
2010 (English)In: Proceedings of the 4th European Conference on Information Management and Evaluation / [ed] Miguel de Castro Neto, 2010, 275-281 p.Conference paper (Refereed)
The benefits of IS/IT are often described in literature, and are often expressed as almost unlimited. An enterprise resource planning (ERP) system is an example of modern information technology with several benefits, such as a companywide design, with a mutual database and real time data. An ERP system is said to excel the company in several respects. However, previous research has shown that the impacts of ERP systems are moderate on management accounting as well as on the issue of productivity increases within the organization. Our understanding of why the impacts are smaller than expected is insufficient. This paper is based on a case study of a medium sized Swedish manufacturing company during the process of choosing and implementing an ERP system. The IT artifact is conceptualized as an evolving and embedded system, which is brought into a dynamic social context. The social dimension makes the process of implementing an ERP system complex and indeterminate. A less investigated aspect of these processes is the historical perspective, where literature has suggested researchers to expand the temporal boundaries. In the present study this is accomplished by investigating the process of how the ERP system was chosen, which precedes the implementation. Drawing from old institutional economics a process is seen to depend on previous actions and experiences, but at the same time the actor always has the possibility to act in a new way, causing change. The analysis examine the future users' ideas of what an ERP system is, how these ideas affect the evaluation of alternative ERP systems, and also if, how and why the ideas changes throughout the implementation. The purpose is to develop an understanding of how a new IT artifact is embedded into the social context of an organization, due to the actors' prior experiences of IT. One of the conclusions drawn is that the IT artifact may impact the work and organization in a more indirect or unnoticeable way than researchers might expect.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2010. 275-281 p.
ERP system implementation, embedded, institution, ideas, experiences
Economics and Business
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-140951ISI: 000284262400034ISBN: 978-1-906638-72-6OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-140951DiVA: diva2:384787
4th European Conference on Information Mangement and Evaluation Univ Nova Lisboa, Lisbon, PORTUGAL, SEP 09-10, 2010