by CIO Staff

Quality and Usefulness—Not User Satisfaction—Define Success, says Management Insights

Jan 08, 20072 mins
IT Leadership

A study focusing on information systems says that quality and usefulness trump user satisfaction in the quest for success. The findings are the subject of a paper in the Management Insights section of the current issue of Management Science, the flagship journal of the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS).

The report, “Information System Success: Individual and Organizational Determinants” by Rajiv Sabherwal, Anand Jeyaraj and Charles Chowa of the University of Missouri St. Louis, is based on empirical research conducted between 1980 and 2004. The study, says a statement from INFORMS, examines four aspects of information systems (IS) success: system quality, perceived usefulness, user satisfaction and system use.

The authors highlight the importance of system quality, which affects all other aspects of IS success. They also observe that system quality and perceived usefulness but, curiously, not user satisfaction, influence the extent to which the system is used. According to the authors, the study’s results suggest that system developers and managers should concentrate on developing better systems rather than focusing on increased user satisfaction with the system.

The analysis also suggests that four long-term measures related to information systems are particularly important: IS training, improving individuals’ attitudes toward information systems, gaining top-management support for information systems and developing organizational structures that facilitate use of information systems, such as help desks and online user assistance.

—Esther Schindler

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