How culture can impact on information systems success

6 Feb

The culture of an organisation can determine whether an organisation achieves information success.

Organisational culture can be defined by the way people live together and that culture is a system of collectively helped values [1]. Cultures functions as stated by Ismail [1];

  1. To provide unspoken guidelines to employees on how to get along with each other in the organisation and enhance the stability of the social system in the organisation.
  2. Enabling the ability to deal successfully with problems from internal integration and external adaption.
  3. Culture also enables differentiating between in-group and out-group people.

In regards to information systems, culture is one of the most determinants in its success [1]. A study carried out by Michael et al in 2010[1] found that as Ismail states there is a noticeable difference in the four culture types (clan culture, adhocracy culture, hierarchy culture, market culture) in all the dimensions of information processing, intensity and scope of information search are all greater in a market driven culture which is followed “by adhocracy, clan and hierarchy” [1]. While information filtering and processing activities” intensive a hierarchical culture, followed by clan, market-driven and adhocratic cultures” [1]. Whereas Xiao [1] found that the culture in an organisation can impact on how innovation can improve the” information technology practices and organisational performance” within an organisation.

While Mukama et al[1] states that the cultural in an organisation has a strong influence on health information systems development and implementation. They continue to state that “the identification and understanding of meanings, norms and power in organisational context” and also in the local context in regards to health information systems development and implementation, can offer a step in the positive direction in current information systems research for health information systems area.



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