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Journal cover: Journal of Enterprise Information Management

Journal of Enterprise Information Management

ISSN: 1741-0398
Previously published as: Logistics Information Management

Online from: 2004

Subject Area: Information and Knowledge Management

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A survey on integrated IS and competitive advantage

Document Information:
Title:A survey on integrated IS and competitive advantage
Author(s):Vincenzo Morabito, (Bocconi University, Milan, Italy), Marinos Themistocleous, (University of Piraeus, Piraeus, Greece, and CISUC, University of Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal), Alan Serrano, (Brunel University, Uxbridge, UK)
Citation:Vincenzo Morabito, Marinos Themistocleous, Alan Serrano, (2010) "A survey on integrated IS and competitive advantage", Journal of Enterprise Information Management, Vol. 23 Iss: 2, pp.201 - 214
Keywords:Business development, Competitive advantage, Information systems, Integration, Italy
Article type:Research paper
DOI:10.1108/17410391011019778 (Permanent URL)
Publisher:Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Purpose – This paper aims to provide robust evidence of the “IT organizational assimilation capacity” mediating role and to propose a complementary model.

Design/methodology/approach – Based on theoretical proposition that IT business value is generated by the deployment of IT and complementary organizational resources, a research model was developed and two hypotheses were proposed. These are tested with a survey from 466 top managers in Italian companies. The 466 questionnaires were analyzed in two steps. In the first step, a series construct validation using factor analysis was performed in order to validate the scales. In the second step, a series of analyses using linear regression was performed between the two independent variables and the dependent variable to validate the mediator function of the IT organizational assimilation capacity.

Findings – Data suggest that most firms have not merged information system (IS) integration with the right complementary organizational resources. The findings also support the notion that competitive advantage does not arise from replicable resources, but from complex, firm-specific and intangible resources and capabilities. The findings help to explain why some firms struggle while others flourish with the same ITs, and why IT-based advantages tend to dissipate so rapidly.

Research limitations/implications – The research suggests that ITs do not merge themselves automatically with human and business resources. Evolving Leavitt's organization diamond and using the paper's data it can be shown that ISs, process, change, flexibility and training are interrelated and mutually adjusting, so when ISs are changed the other components often adjust to dump out the impact of the innovation.

Practical implications – The proposed model can be used complementary to the requirements methods offered by the IS development methodologies, to mitigate their inherent defects in addressing social, organizational and other non-technical issues, when developing a new IS.

Originality/value – This paper proposes a model to be used complementary to the requirements methods offered by the IS development methodologies

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