Diffusion of Information Technology


The assimilation of enterprise systems has extensive influence on power interactions within organizations. Previousassimilation research has typically focused on organizational-level assimilation processes, and the impact of individualcharacteristics, including personal power, has been overlooked. Social network analysis provides a useful way to empiricallyexamine the changes to personal power during the acceptance, routinization, and infusion stages of the organizationalassimilation processes. Enterprise system assimilation involves the empowerment of a firm’s employees to utilize thetechnical capabilities of the system, and the employees’ extensive business knowledge, to make effective strategic decisions.Nevertheless, power is multidimensional and the relative prominences of the idiosyncratic bases of power in organizationalinteractions vary asymmetrically in response to system assimilation. A longitudinal examination of the stages of assimilationusing a valued network approach to study the power interactions of individuals within an organization can provide a valuablenew perspective inside the assimilation process.