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THE INFLUENCE OF A LEARNING CULTURE ON IT INVESTMENTS

ture so that new technologies can be easily integrated is key to achieving business benefits.

Third, the IT department should consider who is involved in making IT decisions. Not all IT decisions require extensive end user departmental input because some decisions cause little disruption in the day-to-day activities of end users (e.g., certain types of IT infrastruc- ture acquisitions) [39]. However, other IT decisions in- duce significant changes. Especially in the latter situation, functional managers, as well as other departmental end users should be involved. Employees from the functional areas can bring insights on department requirements and preferences. They can also propose tailored implementa- tion strategies focused on specific end user groups so that users will be more likely to accept the new IT and use it productively.

Fourth, managers need to closely evaluate the scope of technologies that are considered for adoption, the type of evaluation criteria used, and the weight given to each evaluation element. Because organizations with a continuous-learning culture are more likely to adopt KM technologies than those without such a culture, we can infer that greater rate of adoption is caused by one of the following: 1) the organizations with a continuous- learning culture evaluate technologies that other firms

ignore; or 2) technologies, culture have

both types of organizations evaluate similar but organizations with a continuous-learning different evaluation criteria than other or-

ganizations; or 3) both similar technologies, but

types of organizations evaluate organizations with a continuous-

learning

culture

weigh

evaluation

criteria

differently.

IT

few issues where the IT decision process of learning or- ganizations differ from those that do not have a learning culture. Future research should examine other issues whereby the IT investment decision process differs from other organizations such as human capital investment, changes in work practices and organizational restructur- ing. Second, common-method variance is a possible limi- tation. That is, potential respondent bias might constitute a systematic error common to survey responses from the same source. Since all data were obtained from one execu- tive per organization, common method variance remains a concern. However, using the senior IT executive as a “key organizational informant” is widely accepted in IS research (e.g. 0). Another possible limitation deals with the perception of IT decision-makers regarding the hypo- thetical scenario. To address the concern, the scenario was carefully drafted and refined in the pilot phase of this study, and deemed by IT managers as “realistic” and “commonly encountered.”

Organizational culture can influence IT decision- maker’s perceptions of the factors and priorities to be considered when making an acquisition decision, who is involved in the decision making process, as well in deter- mining which technologies are adopted. Organizations with a continuous-learning culture are more likely to be concerned about change management issues, bear in mind technical flexibility, include functional managers in IT investment decisions and adopt technologies that help manage and distribute knowledge throughout the organi- zation. These considerations are essential in managing IT wisely.

managers should reevaluate making process to ensure technology choices.

these areas in their they are producing

decision- the best

Our research also has important implications for research. We proposed and empirically tested a model that identified three major areas in which learning organiza- tions’ IT decision process can be differentiated from that of other organizations: 1) issues considered, 2) managers

involved

and

3)

technology

choices.

Researchers

may

collect a larger sample size and tion modeling to test the model.

perform structural equa- Future research can use

this

model

as

a

starting

point,

and

could

broaden

both

the

[1]

[2]

REFERENCES

Alavi, M., and Dorothy, E. L. Review:” Knowledge Management and Knowledge Management systems: Conceptual Foundations and Research Issues,” MIS Quarterly, Volume 25, Number 1, 2001, pp. 107- 136. Armstrong, C.P., and Sambamurthy, V. “Information Technology Assimilation in Firms: The Influence of Senior Leadership and IT Infrastructure.,” Informa-

tion Systems Research, 1999, pp. 304-327.

Volume 10, Number 4,

scope major

and the depth of this model areas of differentiation and

by identifying other additional elements

within each area. Case-based research may valuable insights for expanding the model.

also

provide

[3]

Bangert, D., and Doktor, R. “Telemedicine as

an

IS Implementation namics in the USA nal of Healthcare

Problem: Comparison of Dy- and India,” International Jour- Technology & Management,

LIMITATIONS

The research has several limitations in terms of internal and external validity. First, we investigated only a

[4]

Volume, 4, Number 6, 2002, pp. Brown, M.M, and Brudney, J.L.

525-541. “Learning

Organi-

zations in the Public Sector? A Agencies Employing Information

Study of Police and Technology

Journal of Information Technology Management Volume XVI, Number 3, 2005

26

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