Governance Theory Perspectives on IT-Consulting Projects - The Case of ERP Implementation
Niehaves B, Klose K, Becker J
Consulting is a major and established business sector in almost every Western economy representing, for instance, 42% ofthe EU GNP. About 29% of this market comprises IT-related consulting and especially ERP consulting. Here, theimplementation of information systems and the inevitable change to organisational-technical systems is also a politicalprocess. An IT-consulting project can thus be perceived as an institutional arena for political activities where particular actorsincluding management, employees, but also consultants, negotiate and promote their own interests. Despite the importance ofthe political nature of socio-technical system design, it has so far been underresearched and understated. Therefore, focusingon this political perspective, we will approach the analysis and design of IT-consulting projects by drawing on the theory ofgovernance and modern system theory. We seek to develop a theoretical framework that facilitates the analysis and thedesign of IT-consulting projects. An actor-centred systemic view will facilitate an analysis of the organisation-consultantsystem,taking into account especially the different actors' rationales and motivations. The domain of ERP implementationwill be used to provide an application example in terms of a case study. Here, a governance theory analysis of an ERPconsulting project will be conducted and relevant aspects for the design of ERP consulting processes derived.
IT-Consulting, Project Management, Design Science Research, ERP Implementation, Governance Theory