Adopting a service -oriented architecture (SOA) strategy: The forces of organizational culture and the moderating role of senior managers

by Mabry, Sibylle E., Ph.D., CAPELLA UNIVERSITY, 2008, 235 pages; 3330333


Service-oriented architecture (SOA) is a strategy for building modular software, called services, that employs service-oriented programming methodology. Via the abstraction of services into business process packages, an agile infrastructure for effective business models can be developed. Thus, organizations adopting SOA have the potential to enhance their competitiveness; however, investing in an entirely new information technology (IT) paradigm can also jeopardize vital business processes. Despite the extensive research on the adoption of IT innovations by individual end-users, very few studies have looked into organizational adoption behavior and the interaction among social and individual organizational forces. Utilizing a theory-focused approach, this study attempted to (a) identify the factors of organizational culture that influence the organization's preparedness to adopt SOA, to (b) expose the interactions and competing forces between organizational cultural values and top management team (TMT) attitudes that affect the firm's adoption behavior, and to (c) gain insight into the organizational dynamic that drives the adoption of SOA. The study involved a quantitative, cross-sectional analysis to test the research model, specifically, the relationship between organizational culture and the adoption of SOA, as well as the nature of the moderating variables (top management characteristics) regarding the focal relationship. Validated survey instruments from existing surveys were adjusted and employed to measure both organizational cultural values and TMT attitudes. Randomly selected top IT executives who were members of the 121 participating U.S. organization's top management teams completed the questionnaire. Binary logistic regression analysis tested the seven proposed hypotheses of the study and suggested support for four of them. The results of the logistic regression analysis revealed that (a) generally, organizational culture has an impact on the organization's adoption behavior regarding SOA, (b) an entrepreneurial adhocracy culture facilitates the organization's adoption of SOA, (c) the collaborative attitude of top management teams in conjunction with the information-sharing environment of a group culture assists positively in the organization's adoption decision, (d) risk-taking top management teams cannot facilitate the adoption decisions of status-quo-oriented cultures, and (e) collaboratively oriented top management teams significantly and positively influence the organization's adoption of SOA. Opportunities for future research are abundant.

AdviserJose Nieves
Source TypeDissertation
SubjectsManagement; Information science
Publication Number3330333

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