CEC Theses and Dissertations

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Date of Award

2011

Document Type

Dissertation - NSU Access Only

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Information Systems (DISS)

Department

Graduate School of Computer and Information Sciences

Advisor

Eric S. Ackerman

Committee Member

Sumitra Mukherjee

Committee Member

Marlyn K. Littman

Abstract

Today's workforce demands the ability to multi-task. Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) aids businesses by attempting to integrate all departments and functions across a company to create a single software program that runs off one database. An investigation of ERP and supporting technologies was conducted to determine if organizations utilized the full potential of the systems they installed. The researcher investigated companies that have installed ERP systems, and with the use of an online survey, determined the extent to which the companies utilized the full potential of the systems. The study was also conducted to learn the best practices that can be used in ERP system implementation, system maintenance, system expansion, and related activities to recommend to individuals and organizations that can benefit from the research.

A link to an online questionnaire was sent to ERP end-users and implementers via email. This mode of distribution was the most efficient because survey participants were able to access the questionnaire in real time and the researcher was also able to retrieve the responses instantaneously. The responses were retrieved and recorded in an Excel database and pivot tables were used to analyze the data. The data collected from 18 different types of businesses revealed 8 major software packages, over 80% of the organizations sponsored end-user training, and the impetus for implementing ERP focused on three unanimous reasons: reduced cost, increased productivity, and increased efficiency.

While the responses were fewer than anticipated, the results supported the researcher's hypothesis that ERP systems are typically not fully utilized to their full potential. The researcher noted that 60% to 70% of the ERP systems installed were underutilized. This was determined by calculating the percentage of ERP modules utilized in a single system versus the total available modules that can be fully utilized. Additionally, the research literature supported the hypothesis that the underutilization of an ERP system compromises its anticipated benefits and does not support the null hypothesis that there are no significant relationships among technologies (project management, business process re-engineering, and customer relationship management) used to develop and support the utilization of ERP systems.

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