The roles of social identity and dynamic salient group formations for ERP program management success in a postmerger context.

Stefan K. Müller, Jan Mendling, Edward Bernroider

Publication: Scientific journalJournal articlepeer-review


Large enterprise resource planning (ERP) programs and their critical success factors (CSFs) have been subject to intensive research in recent years. One of the key challenges is their complexity in terms of their duration, context, and social dynamics. The aim of this study is to investigate these matters with the help of an interpretative case study using the coding techniques of the grounded theory method. We extend extant ERP research by introducing a new theoretical perspective that helps to clarify how stakeholder perceptions and CSFs are interrelated, and evolve throughout the life cycle of a large ERP implementation conceptualized as a program in a postmerger context. Using Social Identity Theory as a metatheory for interpretation, we find that different perceptions of opposing salient groups are particularly important. Our result offers a dialectic process view of ERP program implementation success, which (1) considers the different perceptions of salient groups (2) at different points in time (phases) and (3) proposes that a low perceptual fit in relation to a specific CSF contributes to program failure as opposed to (4) a high perceptual fit in relation to the respective CSF, which contributes to program success. We offer a new theoretical lens and propositions for future work highlighting the importance of salient groups and their CSF perceptions for ERP program success. Practitioners can use our findings as a guide towards increasing the probability of success throughout the course of their ERP program life cycles.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)609 - 640
JournalInformation Systems Journal (ISJ)
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2019

Austrian Classification of Fields of Science and Technology (ÖFOS)

  • 502050 Business informatics

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