IS Success – It’s Not Just About The Technology!

7 Feb

While we have looked at various IS success frameworks in the past number of weeks, for example the McLean and DeLone IS success model , we have identified many of the IT dimensions that need to be considered when determining how successful an IS unit is. These include information and service quality, user involvement, perceived ease of use and system functionality. While such IT dimensions are very important for measuring the success of an IS unit, we must not forget the soft elements that can impact it also. Some examples of soft elements include culture, IT leadership and skills within the unit.

Culture – is there a culture that allows the interaction and sharing of ideas? Are mistakes viewed as experiences and lessons learned for the future or are those responsible for the mistakes punished? A successful IS unit demands an atmosphere that allows innovation and creativity. The world of IT changes so much that IS workers need to be able to experiment with new technologies. Are there core values shared and extended across the firm, including business functions and IS units? Shared core values will keep IS projects aligned with business processes and objectives.

IT Leadership – A successful IS unit needs excellent IT leadership. Does the IS unit as a whole have the right blend of IT and business skills to lead the IS unit to success? Does the CIO and senior IS executives have the appropriate communication skills to ensure employees can understand the needs of the business in terms of its technologies?

Up-to date skills – I believe training would also play a part in leading an IS unit to success. As IT is constantly changing, IS and IT employees need to continuously update their skills and partake in regular training.
When measuring the success of an IS unit it is important to consider soft elements as well as the technology dimensions.

(All ideas are my own)

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