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The Alignment of System and Organizational Design in ERP Implementation: A Review of Theoretical Perspectives

Author:

Ashish Mullick

Information Systems and Innovation Group, Department of Management, London School of Economics and Political Science, GB
About Ashish
MSc Analysis, Design and Management of Information Systems
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Abstract

An ERP system streamlines the business processes of different departments of an organization. The ERP system has an organizational structure embedded in it which is designed by the developers of the ERP package. These developers tend to incorporate standardized organizational processes but in reality, these embedded structures are often misaligned with the organizational structure where these ERP packages are implemented. The primary aim of this paper is to analyze a misalignment between the structure of an organization embedded in an ERP package and the structure of an organization where it is implemented. The paper argues that both package customization and organizational changes are required to deal with this misalignment. The paper identifies two views: static and dynamic to classify and review various information system (IS) theories in this context. The static view helps the managers and researchers to form an ideal path for the ERP implementation process and helps in dealing with the misalignment between the organization structure and the structure embedded in the ERP package during initial stages of ERP implementation. The static view in the context of ERP implementation is discussed using three IS theories: Resource Based View, Structural Contingency Theory and Technology Acceptance Model. A major drawback of this perspective is that it does not provide an insight into the dynamics of implementation processes. Since ERP implementation is an enterprise level project, it involves interaction between the different elements which produce some unexpected events. The dynamic view of the ERP implementation deals with the situation arising due to the unexpected complementary effect when various forces act together. In this view, three IS theories: Actor Network Theory, Emergent View and Socio Technical Theory are discussed. This paper highlights some of the key issues using these IS theories to help future research in this area.

How to Cite: Mullick, A., 2012. The Alignment of System and Organizational Design in ERP Implementation: A Review of Theoretical Perspectives. iSCHANNEL, 6(1), pp.19–23.
Published on 06 Aug 2012.
Peer Reviewed

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