Business & Information Systems Engineering

Document Type

Research Paper


Organizations strive to develop a variety of capabilities to improve and measure business processes. Researchers have used various maturity models to investigate the development of a business process orientation (BPO), and most have argued that such a development comes in stages. Current literature underestimates the interrelationships between BPO capabilities and fails to consider multidimensional or non-linear paths to maturity. To refine the features of maturity models, this study relies on configuration theory to uncover different archetypes for BPO development and quantitatively evaluate them by examining performance differences among archetypes based on a large-scale international dataset. The resulting empirical taxonomy with seven BPO archetypes establishes important performance differences between organizations at a similar maturity level. Besides strengthening the theoretical foundations of BPO and making maturity assessments more multifaceted, the results help organizations give their managerial efforts a focus by enabling comparison with peers in the same archetype and showing various paths for BPO improvement.