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- An Analysis of the Effect of Environmental and Systems Complexity on Information Systems Failures
- Companies have invested large amounts of money on information systems development. Unfortunately, not all information systems developments are successful. Software project failure is frequent and lamentable. Surveys and statistical analysis results underscore the severity and scope of software project failure. Limited research relates software structure to information systems failures. Systematic study of failure provides insights into the causes of IS failure. More importantly, it contributes to better monitoring and control of projects and enhancing the likelihood of the success of management information systems. The underlining theories and literature that contribute to the construction of theoretical framework come from general systems theory, complexity theory, and failure studies. One hundred COBOL programs from a single company are used in the analysis. The program log clearly documents the date, time, and the reasons for changes to the programs. In this study the relationships among the variables of business requirements change, software complexity, program size and the error rate in each phase of software development life cycle are tested. Interpretations of the hypotheses testing are provided as well. The data shows that analysis error and design error occur more often than programming error. Measurement criteria need to be developed at each stage of the software development cycle, especially in the early stage. The quality and reliability of software can be improved continuously. The findings from this study suggest that it is imperative to develop an adaptive system that can cope with the changes to the business environment. Further, management needs to focus on processes that improve the quality of the system design stage.
- Critical success factors in data mining projects.
- The increasing awareness of data mining technology, along with the attendant increase in the capturing, warehousing, and utilization of historical data to support evidence-based decision making, is leading many organizations to recognize that the effective use of data is the key element in the next generation of client-server enterprise information technology. The concept of data mining is gaining acceptance in business as a means of seeking higher profits and lower costs. To deploy data mining projects successfully, organizations need to know the key factors for successful data mining. Implementing emerging information systems (IS) can be risky if the critical success factors (CSFs) have been researched insufficiently or documented inadequately. While numerous studies have listed the advantages and described the data mining process, there is little research on the success factors of data mining. This dissertation identifies CSFs in data mining projects. Chapter 1 introduces the history of the data mining process and states the problems, purposes, and significances of this dissertation. Chapter 2 reviews the literature, discusses general concepts of data mining and data mining project contexts, and reviews general concepts of CSF methodologies. It also describes the identification process for the various CSFs used to develop the research framework. Chapter 3 describes the research framework and methodology, detailing how the CSFs were identified and validated from more than 1,300 articles published on data mining and related topics. The validated CSFs, organized into a research framework using 7 factors, generate the research questions and hypotheses. Chapter 4 presents analysis and results, along with the chain of evidence for each research question, the quantitative instrument and survey results. In addition, it discusses how the data were collected and analyzed to answer the research questions. Chapter 5 concludes with a summary of the findings, describing assumptions and limitations and suggesting future research.
- A Discrimination of Software Implementation Success Criteria
- Software implementation projects struggle with the delicate balance of low cost, on-time delivery and quality. The methodologies and processes used to create and maintain a quality software system are expensive to deploy and result in long development cycle-time. However, without their deployment into the software implementation life-cycle, a software system will be undependable, unsuccessful. The purpose of this research is to identify a succinct set of software implementation success criteria and assess the key independent constructs, activities, carried out to ensure a successful implementation project. The research will assess the success of a software implementation project as the dependent construct of interest and use the software process model (methodology) as the independent construct. This field research involved three phases: (1) criteria development, (2) data collection, and (3) testing of hypotheses and discriminant analysis. The first phase resulted in the development of the measurement instruments for the independent and dependent constructs. The measurement instrument for the independent construct was representative of the criteria from highly regarded software implementation process models and methodologies, e.g., ISO9000, Software Engineering Institute's Capability Maturity Model (SEI CMM). The dependent construct was developed from the categories and criteria from the Delone and McLean (1992) MIS List of Success Measures. The data collection and assessment phase employed a field survey research strategy to 80 companies involved in internal software implementation. Both successful and unsuccessful software implementation projects (identified by the Delone/McLean model) participated. Results from 165 projects were collected, 28 unsuccessful and 137 successful. The third phase used ANOVA to test the first 11 hypotheses and employed discriminant analysis for the 12th hypothesis to identify the "best set" of variables, criteria, that discriminate between successful and unsuccessful software implementation projects. Twelve discriminating variables out of 67 were identified and supported as significant discriminators between successful and unsuccessful projects. Three of the 11 constructs were found not to be significant investments for the successful projects.
- An investigation of success metrics for the design of e-commerce Web sites.
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The majority of Web site design literature mainly concentrates on the technical and functional aspects of Web site design. There is a definite lack of literature, in the IS field, that concentrates on the visual and aesthetic aspects of Web design. Preliminary research into the relationship between visual design and successful electronic commerce Web sites was conducted. The emphasis of this research was to answer the following three questions. What role do visual design elements play in the success of electronic commerce Web sites? What role do visual design principles play in the success of electronic commerce Web sites? What role do the typographic variables of visual design play in the success of electronic commerce Web sites? Forty-three undergraduate students enrolled in an introductory level MIS course used a Likert-style survey instrument to evaluate aesthetic aspects of 501 electronic commerce Web pages. The instrument employed a taxonomy of visual design that focused on three dimensions: design elements, design principles, and typography. The data collected were correlated against Internet usage success metrics data provided by Nielsen/NetRatings. Results indicate that 22 of the 135 tested relationships were statistically significant. Positive relationships existed between four different aesthetic dimensions and one single success measure. The other 18 significant relationships were negatively correlated. The visual design elements of space, color as hue, and value were negatively correlated with three of the success measures. The visual design principles of contrast, emphasis radiated through contrast, and contrast shape were negatively correlated with three of the success measures. Finally, the typographic variables of placement and type size were both negatively correlated with two of the success measures. This research provides support to the importance of visual design theory in Web site design. This preliminary research should be viewed as a realization of the need for Web sites to be designed with both visual design theory and usability in mind.
- An investigation of technical support issues influencing user satisfaction
- The widespread distribution of personal computers (PCs) throughout organizations has made a substantial impact on information systems. Additionally, the tremendous growth of the Internet has changed the way business is carried out. As the user population evolves into a much more technical and demanding group, their needs are also changing. With this change, Management Information Systems (MIS) departments must develop new ways of providing service and support to the user community. This study investigates the relationship between information systems support structures, support services, service quality and the characteristics of a diverse user population. This includes investigating technical support issues influencing user satisfaction. This study attempts to improve the understanding of the support function within MIS. The results of this study clarify the support needs of the users and identify user satisfaction factors, as well as factors relative to the quality of the support received. Six streams of prior research were reviewed when developing the research framework. These include: user support, end users and end-user computing, identifying and classifying user types, information centers, user satisfaction, service quality and other sources of computer support. A survey instrument was designed using the (UIS) user satisfaction instrument developed by Doll and Torkzadeh (1988) and the SERVQUAL instrument as modified by Kettinger and Lee (1994). The survey was distributed to 720 individuals. A total of 155 usable responses were analyzed providing mixed results. Of the ten hypotheses, only four were rejected. The finding of this study differ from those in earlier studies. The variables that were found to be significant to the users for service quality are the method of support that is provided to the user, i.e., help desk or local MIS support and the support technician's experience level. For user satisfaction the location of the service personnel made a difference to the end user. As with service quality, the support technician's experience level added to the users' satisfaction with MIS support. The results of this study are pertinent to managers of MIS departments as it clarifies the support needs of the users and identifies issues of user satisfaction and service quality.
- IS-MBNQA: A new framework for the relationship between Information Systems and organizational quality.
- Despite numerous frameworks and models proposed in the literature, Information Systems (IS) assessment still remains elusive. In addition, little agreement exists on the contribution of the IS function within an organization and on how IS is related to the other organizational dimensions. Frameworks that show the relationship between IS and the organization are in the developmental stage and this work proposes a more comprehensive framework to assist in better understanding the relationship between IS and organizational quality. This research examines two popular IS quality assessment frameworks - Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award (MBNQA) and Information Systems Assessment (ISA) - and suggests a new framework, IS-MBNQA. This work integrates these two IS quality assessment frameworks into a single comprehensive model that provides a holistic view on how IS quality is interrelated to organizational quality. The existing two IS assessment frameworks attempted to measure IS quality at different levels within an organization. The MBNQA model is the most comprehensive quality framework because it takes an organization wide perspective. On the other hand, ISA employs an IS specific perspective and reflects the relationships of eight major IS success dimensions. ISA is a modified version of DeLone & McLean's model with the inclusion of a success factor for Service Quality. For this study, survey instruments are developed from the MBNQA and ISA frameworks and they are consolidated to allow testing of the single IS-MBNQA framework. Exploratory factor analysis is performed for instrument refinement and confirmatory factor analysis for validity of the models. The instruments developed in this work are utilized as a foundation for identifying the relationships among the dimensions within and between each model. A major contribution of this work is the validation of the 2000 MBNQA model and the extension of existing models/frameworks to better explain the IS contribution to an organization.