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Coping with institutional complexity: Intersecting logics and dissonant visions in a nation-wide healthcare IT implementation project

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Original languageEnglish
JournalInformation Technology & People
Early online date12 Jun 2019
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 12 Jun 2019

Abstract

Digital transformation projects are complex, lengthy and difficult to implement, often failing to meet their objectives. Previous research has attributed this failure to competing institutional logics influencing actors’ coping responses, and differences in actors’ interpretations of the project’s goals, technology and processes - their “organising vision”. This paper analyses a complex technology implementation project from an institutional perspective, to further elucidate the role of multiple logics and organising vision.
A qualitative single study approach was used to investigate a public-sector technology project aimed at delivering a unified Human Resource Information System (HRIS) across regional health organisations in one country.
Four logics characterised the project (public-sector, professional, corporate and market), but their relative dominance shifted as the project transitioned through stages, from comprehension to implementation. These shifts exposed tensions between components of actors’ organising vision, which influenced their coping behaviours in response to unexpected changes in the project’s strategic ambitions and technological scope. Coherence of vision, both within groups of actors and between them, was a key mediator of coping responses and project outcomes.
This analysis demonstrates the role of actors’ organising vision in bridging institutional logics and coping responses to shape digital transformation projects. It highlights the need to account not only for diverse institutional logics, but also for their changing influence as projects unfold and actors’ attention is directed onto different aspects of the organising vision. From a management perspective, it illustrates the importance of clear and consistent communication, to avoid entrenching conflicting interpretations.

    Research areas

  • human resource information system, institutional theory, organizing vision, digital transformation, IT innovation, IS implementation

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