Standardizing organizational information technology (IT) infrastructure and processes is stated as one of the most important activities of today’s companies. Since IT is used and embedded in more and more business areas within companies, the complexity and costs of organizational IT infrastructures and processes are continuously rising. In this context, IT standardization represents a possible means to reduce complexity and maintain control over the organizational IT. Given the practical importance of organizational IT standards and standardization efforts, we carried out a database-driven literature search. We found that research on the management, governance and enforcement of IT standards within organizations is relatively limited. Previous studies indicate that many standardization efforts fail suffering from low acceptance rates among staff and rather superficial use Therefore, it is essential for companies to implement management and governance mechanisms to enforce the usage of IT standards in order to achieve their standardization goals. However, before designing such management mechanisms, it is important to first understand the drivers of employee’s acceptance towards organizational IT standards – because without having a deep understanding of employee’s acceptance behavior towards organizational IT standards, it is not possible to design efficient management mechanisms in order to raise the acceptance rate. Therefore it is especially important to understand the cognitive drivers from an employee’s perspective.
The aim of a recent research project was to discover the most important influential factors from an employee’s perspective when it comes to accepting or rejecting organizational IT standards by building a perception-based model. Since our work seeks for explaining employee’s acceptance towards organizational IT standards, we embedded our study in the acceptance research stream by deriving a first understanding of the phenomenon. Building on this knowledge, we designed a field study approach based on interviews, resulting in a conceptual model that explains IT standard acceptance on an individual level.
Individual Drivers of IT Standard Acceptance
Our work has a twofold contribution: First, we advance the research field on organizational IT standards by establishing links to the field of acceptance research and offering explanations for individual acceptance of those standards. Second, our developed model serves as a basis for managing organizational IT standardization.
The research results have recently been accepted for publication:
Müller, T., Dittes, S., Ahlemann, F., Urbach, N. and Smolnik, S. (2015) Because Everybody is Different: Towards Understanding the Acceptance of Organizational IT Standards, Proceedings of the 48th Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences (HICSS-48), January 5-8, Kauai, Hawaii. (Link)