Assimilation of Interorganizational Business Process Standards

Bala, H. and Venkatesh, V. “Assimilation of Interorganizational Business Process Standards,” Information Systems Research (18:3), 2007, 340-362.

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Organizations have not fully realized the benefits of interorganizational relationships (IORs) due to the lack of cross-enterprise process integration capabilities. Recently,interorganizational business process standards (IBPS) enabled by information technology (IT) have been suggested as a solution to help organizations overcome this problem. Drawing on three theoretical perspectives, i.e., the relational view of the firm, institutional theory, and organizational inertia theory, we propose three mechanisms—relational, influence, and inertial—to explain the assimilation of IBPS in organizations. We theorize that these mechanisms will have differential effects on the assimilation of IBPS in dominant and nondominant firms. Using a cross-case analysis based on data from 11 firms in the high-tech industry, we found evidence to support our propositions that relational depth, relationship extendability, and normative pressure were important for dominant firms while relational specificity and influence mechanisms (coercive, mimetic, and normative pressures) were important for nondominant firms. Inertial mechanisms, i.e., ability and willingness to overcome resource and routine rigidities, were important for both dominant and nondominant firms.
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