Title

Perceptions of Selected Administrators Regarding Enterprise Resource Planning Software Implementation Best Practices, and the Relationship Between These Perceptions and Selected Variables

Date of Award

2001

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Educational Studies and Research

First Advisor

Arthur Southerland

Advisor Department

Educational Studies and Research

Abstract

This study measured two higher education administrative groups' perceptions regarding implementation best practices, and also examined the relationship between the two groups' perceptions and the independent variables of vendor choice, level of customization made to the software product, the use of a written project plan, and the establishment of a separate budget specifically to track implementation expenditures. Participants in the study were chief financial and information officers at Southern Association of Colleges and Schools-accredited institutions Levels Five and Six. Contact information was obtained from the Higher Education Directory . An expert panel established the content validity of the researcher-developed survey instrument. The survey was mailed to 308 administrators; after two mailings a usable sample size of 159 was obtained for a response rate of 53%. Results of the data analysis reveal significant differences between the two groups' perceptions. Individual testing of the best practice statements also produced significant differences between the two groups' perceptions for four statements and the statements overall. Also, a significant relationship exists between the two groups' perceptions and the variables of vendor choice, level of customization made to the software product, the use of a written project plan, and the establishment of a separate budget specifically to track implementation expenditures. Additionally, a significant independent relationship exists between the two groups' perceptions and the use of a separate budget to track implementation expenditures, while controlling for all other variables. Individual testing of the best practice statements produced significant differences for 12 statements and the statements overall between administrators whose institutions had established a separate budget to track implementation expenditures and those whose institutions had not. The study's findings validate what constitutes enterprise resource planning software implementation best practices in higher education. Significant differences found in the individual statements suggest that higher education administrators pay particular attention to enterprise resource planning software implementation issues like budgeting, executive management support, and the implementation's impact on the functional areas involved.