A Triple Take on Information System Implementation
While researchers have used a variety of models to explain information system (IS) implementation outcomes, few have analyzed the same project or set of projects with different models looking for complementary explanations. Recognizing the multilevel nature of IS implementation, our study rises to this challenge by conducting an alternate template analysis of three cases of IS implementation in hospitals. First, we explain individual use, group resistance, and organizational adoption with models situated at the same level of analysis as each outcome. At the individual level, we use a model of cognitive absorption to explain individual system usage. At the group level, the political variant of interaction theory is used to explain group resistance to IS implementation. At the organizational level, we use organizational configurations to explain IS adoption in terms of emergence and routinization. We identify each model’s limits and prediction failures, and we show that using alternate models helps to remedy a model’s prediction failures and overcome its limits. Finally, we propose an alternate-template theory of IS implementation outcomes that takes into account all three levels of analysis, their respective outcomes, and the time dimension. This multilevel, longitudinal theory provides a better understanding of IS implementation and further elucidates what may initially have seemed to be contradictory results.