An Exploration of the Post-Acquisition Information Systems Development Environment

JONES, David Edward (2020). An Exploration of the Post-Acquisition Information Systems Development Environment. Doctoral, Sheffield Hallam University.

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This work is a qualitative study which explores the post-acquisition Information Systems development environment of three organisations from the automotive industry and the study is unique on several levels. Firstly, the undertaking from the theoretical perspective of neo-empiricism following the general inductive approach, secondly, the methodological approach of case study and finally, the application in the automotive industry. Although limited to a single sector and focussing upon core operating Information Systems, the finding of this work add to the body of existing knowledge whilst providing real-world value which can be applied across industries and sectors. Literature has, for over three decades, claimed the importance of Information Systems in the achievement of organisational merger and acquisition success. Studies to date claim up to 70% of all mergers and acquisitions are deemed failures and given the high levels of global merger and acquisition activity, which is forecast to continue, the factors, identified in this study, critical for success will support practitioners. The study highlights the need for organisations to learn about each other in order to identify the most suitable Information Systems future strategy and the process is an iterative one long after the acquisition has been accomplished, where previous studies have not taken place. The empirical research themes have explored the relationships between acquiring and acquired organisations specifically considering the mutual expectations, the levels of participation and support provision. It also examines the implications for strategic independence and organisational autonomy post-acquisition by seeking out examples of rationalisation and collaboration. The research does not claim a ‘one best way’ for future implementation to resolve Information Systems dilemmas post-acquisition. Rather the work has uncovered the need to treat each new acquisition as unique due to the myriad of complex and historical variables that this study has identified. These are not purely technical and possess social dimensions which can be interpreted in different ways by the individuals who are involved. It has been identified that, for the automotive sector, critical factors for consideration include; whether both the acquiring and acquired organisations are from the same industry, their size and production volume disparity, the nature of the cultural environment for which the Information Systems resource was originally developed and product complexity differences. The undertaking of this research, from the alternative theoretical perspective of neo-empiricism, has further endorsed the validity of previous research. Themes identified from literature have been found to continue to be relevant today, although this research has enhanced them with the identification of new categories. Categories, which will also support practitioners in their analysis and understanding of this phenomenon at all stages from pre-acquisition, whilst undertaking acquisition and at any stage post-acquisition.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Thesis advisor - Gorst, Jonathan [0000-0002-3606-8766]
Thesis advisor - Mcauley, John
Additional Information: Director of studies: Dr. Jonathan Gorst / Thesis supervisor: Prof. John McAuley
Research Institute, Centre or Group - Does NOT include content added after October 2018: Sheffield Hallam Doctoral Theses
Identification Number:
Depositing User: Colin Knott
Date Deposited: 12 May 2021 15:47
Last Modified: 11 Aug 2023 14:50

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