Organizational information systems: Rate of return and influencing variables as viewed by top financial executives

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8 Scopus citations


Purpose - The overall purpose of this paper is to analyze variables that influence how top financial executives view their return on information technology (IT) investment in their organizations. Specifically, relationships between a series of independent variables are measured against the dependent variable overall return on its technology investment. The goal is to determine what contributes to IT success in an organization so that all organizations can focus attention where needed and improve their IT operations. Design/methodology/approach - An analysis of secondary data obtained from the 2003 Financial Executives International (FEI) comprehensive survey-based research on technology issues for financial executives was conducted. The study was carried out by the FEI and Computer Sciences Corporation. Regression analysis and other statistical methods were used. Findings - The findings suggest that overall information return is rated medium to high by top financial executives. Variables that significantly and positively affect return include: progress on number one IT issue, seeing IT as a competitive advantage, and IT as a core competency. In addition, though just having an information systems (IS) strategic plan is a significant variable, if there is a plan and it is aligned with the overall corporate strategy, then this variable is positive and significant as well. Most view outsourcing as successful but outsourcing per se does not add to success. Research limitations/implications - The study can be used as a basis for further exploration on the influences on technology success as well as serve as a preliminary model to analyze firm IS. Limitations of the study include that the only group included in the survey were financial executives. Non-response bias is also possible. Practical implications - The findings can be used to guide management teams in emphasizing control of the important variables in implementing IS and IT that influence overall corporate returns. Originality/value - The paper analyzes a large current sample set that empirically reviews a cross-section of major corporations' IS departments and their returns. In addition, it begins to explore the variables influencing overall IS returns.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)43-59
Number of pages17
JournalIndustrial Management and Data Systems
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 1 2008

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Management Information Systems
  • Industrial relations
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Strategy and Management
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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