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The adoption of new technology: the case of object-oriented computing in software companies

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2 Author(s)
Sultan, F. ; Coll. of Bus. Adm., Northeastern Univ., Boston, MA, USA ; Chan, L.

This study examines the adoption of new technologies within organizations, The significance of this research is to broaden the understanding of technology adoption within organizations by focusing on adoption at the individual level, The key research question that is examined is: “what factors contribute to the adoption of new technology by individuals within firms?” A model is presented to distinguish adopters from nonadopters based on four sets of constructs: (1) the characteristics of the individual; (2) individual's perception of group characteristics; (3) individual's perception of company characteristics; and (4) individual's perception of technology. Unlike previous studies that focus only on top management in firms, this study examines adoption at the level of middle managers, engineers and technical personnel, i.e., those individuals who are more likely to actually use this technology in the workplace. The study links previously studied elements of adoption and diffusion of innovations to the specific case of a relatively recent innovation for organizations, As an example, an empirical examination of adoption of object-oriented technology (OT) in software companies is conducted. This technology is a software development technique that uses pretested and routine methods or “objects” to design, construct and assemble software programs. It is a new way of thinking about software based on abstraction that exists in the real world. The results of this study show that individual characteristics, perception of group characteristics and company characteristics are significantly related to OT adoption, but the individual's perception of the technology is not. The proposed model predicts adopters of new technology, such as OT, with 86% accuracy, The results suggest the factors that top management need to focus on in order to facilitate new technology adoption in firms

Published in:

Engineering Management, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:47 ,  Issue: 1 )