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Dissertation
Information Technology (IT) Investments and Process Performance: An Empirical Investigation of the Complementarity between IT and Non-IT Resources
(2003)
  • Patrick I. Jeffers, Georgia Southern University
Abstract
We explore the question of how IT could enhance firm performance and value, drawing on the resource-based view (RBV) of the firm, by proposing and testing an integrated structural framework in which IT serves as an antecedent to customer-service performance. Recognizing that IT is most likely to affect a firms performance through its impact on intermediate processes, hypotheses regarding the differential and complementary role of various IT resources and capabilities, and non-IT (Human and Business) resources were developed. These hypotheses are empirically tested in the context of the third party logistics (3PL) industry, in which customer service is widely perceived as strategically important, with IT playing a significant, if not pivotal role. Achieving the fundamentals of customer-centrism has long been regarded as the true nexus for successfully gaining and retaining market share, a prerequisite for achieving a sustainable competitive advantage. Our level of analysis is the firm as a configuration of cross-functional business processes and customer service, in this instance, refers neither to any distinctive department of the firm, nor IT-deployment strategy, but to the overall orientation of the firms business-processes configuration. This perspective is an established supply chain management (SCM) paradigm, believed to better focus the firm towards anticipating and attempting to surpass customers expectations. Two underlying research objectives are pursued: first, we examine one possible transformation process by which IT can contribute to enhancing the value of the firm via its strategic role as an antecedent to the customer-relating dimension of the firm performance. Second, factorial regression hypotheses were tested that suggest positive interaction between IT resources and the other firm-specific resources namely its human, and business process-related resources, and IT managerial capability. Evidence suggests that the customer-centric perspective is a valid proposition to be included in the discussion regarding IT and its contribution to performance. Also, there is evidence that IT does, in fact, contribute to firm (financial) performance by way of the customer-service performance construct as developed in the research, mainly through its complementary interaction with other firm-specific resources. This dimension of potential IT contribution to firm performance has remained virtually unexplored prior to this research.
Keywords
  • Customer-centric business process,
  • Supply chain,
  • Firm performance,
  • Contributions of IT,
  • IT and non-IT resources interaction,
  • IT complementarity
Disciplines
Publication Date
2003
Degree
Doctor of Philosophy
Field of study
Accounting and Management Information Systems
Department
Ohio State University
Advisors
Waleed Muhanna
Citation Information
Patrick I. Jeffers. "Information Technology (IT) Investments and Process Performance: An Empirical Investigation of the Complementarity between IT and Non-IT Resources" (2003)
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/patrick_i_jeffers/9/