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Title: An analytical framework for workflow technology adoption in local government authorities
Author: Sajjad, Farhana
ISNI:       0000 0004 5364 3325
Awarding Body: Brunel University
Current Institution: Brunel University
Date of Award: 2014
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The focus of the study is to develop a novel framework of workflow technology adoption (WAF) for public policy making. Workflow technology (WfT) has emerged to support both technological and economic importance for private and public organisations to meet competitive business and computational environment. Despite all the benefits of WfT, there has been limited adoption by policy makers. One of the reasons for this is the lack of a theoretical framework for researchers and a tool for decision makers that help in evaluating WfT adoption. Due to the limited knowledge on workflow adoption, from the socio-technical and organisational side, an academic challenge is to identify the key factors that influence adoption. To overcome these limitations, the proposed workflow adoption framework is based on the amalgamation of Technology, Organisation, Environment and Task Technology Fit theories that is evaluated and extended by using a qualitative multiple case study approach. Qualitative content analysis of the empirical data collected from three UK local government authorities resulted in a novel framework for WfT adoption, particularly for the policy making context, that has 17 factors, which influence adoption decisions. Findings revealed that attitude, organisation structure and competition did not have any influential role due to immense managerial support, constructive communication and thorough training provided to employees. Also, competition as an environmental factor had no influence over the adoption of WfT, since public services do not compete like in the private sector over market share, instead imitative pressure emerged due to close collaboration with neighbouring LGAs. It was also found that stakeholders and timescale had influence on the decisions and collection proved to be an important task characteristic of the LGAs. The major contribution of the framework is that it provides an understanding of the phenomenon by identifying key factors from the contextual perspective (i) technological set (complexity, relative advantage, compatibility and timescale), (ii) organisational set (managerial support, cost, information intensity and stakeholders), (iii) environmental set (government regulations and imitative pressure). In addition, it identifies functional fit of WfT with the task requirements by classifying functions (communication, information processing and process structuring) and policy making task characteristics (generation, choice, collection and combination) and then analysing the fit. Together it provides a holistic understanding of the phenomenon that aids informed decision making relevant to WfT adoption. Although, the literature has emphasised the technical aspects so far, this study contributes to future studies through organisational and managerial knowledge, classifying WfT’s functions and policy making task characteristics. Practical implications exist for the policy makers who can adopt the WAF as a recommendation tool to make informed decisions and achieve competitive advantage. Keywords: Workflow technology, IT adoption, decision making, policy making process and e-government.
Supervisor: Irani, Z. Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: E-government ; Technology adaption ; Workflow