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It Acceptance In A Less Developed Country

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  • 1. International Journal of Information Management 22 (2002) 47–65 IT acceptance in a less-developed country: a motivational factor perspective Murugan Anandarajana,*, Magid Igbariab, Uzoamaka P. Anakwec a Department of Management, Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA b Programs in Information Science, Claremont Graduate University, Claremont, CA 91711, USA c Lubin School of Business, Pace University, Pleasantville, NY 10570, USA Abstract Under-developed countries are recognizing the importance of information technology (IT). Studies show that many systems in these countries are under-utilized. This study examines factors that motivate users to accept technology. Data was collected from 143 computer users in Nigeria. The results suggest that social pressure is an important factor affecting technology acceptance. r 2002 Published by Elsevier Science Ltd. Keywords: Information technology; Under developed countries; Information systems; Nigeria 1. Introduction Until the early part of the 1990s the diffusion of information technology (IT) in many less- developed countries (LDCs) in regions such as Africa, Asia and Latin America were extremely low (Odedra, Lawrie, Bennett, & Goodman, 1993; Rigg & Goodman, 1992). With increasing global trade, many of these LDCs are beginning to recognize the importance of information systems (IS). This is evident from recent surveys showing that microcomputer purchases in the business sector of these regions are growing at an annual rate of 90% (The Fourteen Major Trends, 1997). However, as with the case of developed countries, the mere adoption by organizations of IT does not necessarily confer on them the benefits that could only result from its effective usage. Studies have shown that many information systems in LDCs are under-utilized and hence do not make a significant contribution to improving the performance of organizations using them (Foster & Cornford, 1992; Odedra et al., 1993). *Corresponding author. Tel.: +1-215-895-6212; fax: +1-215-895-2891. E-mail addresses: murugan.anandarajan@drexel.edu (M. Anandarajan), igbariam@cgs.edu (M. Igbaria), anakwe@pace.edu (U.P. Anakwe). 0268-4012/02/$ - see front matter r 2002 Published by Elsevier Science Ltd. PII: S 0 2 6 8 - 4 0 1 2 ( 0 1 ) 0 0 0 4 0 - 8
  • 2. 48 M. Anandarajan et al. / International Journal of Information Management 22 (2002) 47–65 IS researchers have devoted considerable attention towards understanding the factors that inhibit the wider use of microcomputers as well as to identifying the factors that promote or motivate usage of this technology. A cursory review of IT acceptance literature (see for instance, Igbaria, 1993; Straub, 1994) indicates that most empirical evidence was collected in North America using American subjects. This, in itself, is a serious shortcoming, since an important concern in scientific research is external validity, and ‘‘a key dimension of external validity is international’’ (Stumpf, Brief, & Hartman, 1987, p. 28). As Liebenau and Smithson (1991) point out ‘‘the social and cultural characteristics of European institutions can be studied as distinct from, or perhaps in contrast to, North American or Japanese institutions (p. 1). This view is further emphasized by Aharoni and Burton (1994), who state ‘‘Unfortunately there is not a universally accepted theoretical underpinning or even an accepted language and shared definitions that could be a basis of a universal contingency management theory, applicable globally’’ (p. 1). Despite these concerns studies that explicitly address the issues related to the adoption and usage of microcomputers in under-developed countries are scarce (Avgerou, 1996). This study examines the relationships between IT acceptance and its impact on the individual users in a LDC country, namely, the West African country of Nigeria (GNP 122.6 bn). Research by Hofstede (1984), indicates that countries in this region differ culturally from North America in several respects. In his study, Hofstede ranked ten countries and two regions from high to low (100 the highest and 0 the lowest). He found that both the US and West Africa differed culturally in terms of power distance (scores 40 and 77, respectively, and ranking 9 and 4); individualism (scores 91 and 20, respectively, and ranking 1 and 11); and masculinity (scores 65 and 46, respectively, and ranking 5 and 9); but differed only slightly in terms of uncertainty avoidance (scores 46 and 54, respectively, and ranking 10 and 7). Thus, in summary, Hofstede refers to the US as being a market culture and West Africa as being a family culture. This distinction between cultures suggests that information technology and/management practices should be modified for different cultural contexts. Studies examining information technology for group oriented cultures (collectivistic) of LDCs such as Nigeria is sparse and needed, especially, since previous studies have been based on individual oriented cultures of developed countries (individualistic) such as the United States. Clan loyalties, religion, hometown associations form the basis of individual social affiliation and identities among indigenous African cultures including Nigeria (Mpofu, 1993). Although, Nigeria is a diverse society with approximately 300 ethnic and sub-ethnic groups with as many distinct languages and dialects, collectivism is evenly applicable to most of Nigerian society regardless of ethnic affiliation (Gannon, 1994). The use of microcomputers in Nigeria is a relatively new development that was not integrated into business operations until the late 1980s. For a nation encumbered with inefficient methods of disseminating information, microcomputers have begun to emerge as an important element in support for the need of real-time and dependable information (Unyimadu, 1989). This is evident from a US Department of Commerce 1994 report that states that ‘‘computers and peripherals constituted a large percentage of exports to Nigeria, and has risen by over 40% from 1990 to 1991’’. Although interest in and awareness of microcomputer use are high, the lack of improvement of IS productivity as well as under-utilization of information systems in Nigeria is widespread (Jason & Thompson, 1995).
  • 3. 49 M. Anandarajan et al. / International Journal of Information Management 22 (2002) 47–65 In addition to understanding the factors which influence technology acceptance, it is also important to examine the impact of accepting or rejecting IT from an individual or social system perspective (Rogers, 1995). Recent studies have examined the impact of new information technologies in terms of users’ job satisfaction and quality of work life (Attewell & Rule, 1984; Bikson, Stasz, & Mankin, 1985; Kraut, Dumais, & Kock, 1989; Millman & Hartwick, 1987). Although these studies have been useful in broadly identifying the nature and degree of the impact of new information technologies on individuals, they also contain many contradictory and inconclusive findings about the consequences of information technology acceptance. Further, most of the studies were based on investigations of case studies and not on the empirical studies needed to examine the consequences of information technology acceptance. Therefore, the objective of this study is to investigate the determinants and consequences of microcomputer usage in Nigeria. This study also extends previous literature by examining all motivating factors which could affect an individual to use a microcomputer in an under-developed country. These factors include perceived usefulness, perceived enjoyment/fun and social pressure. In addition, the study examines the relationships between microcomputer usage and its impact on the individual users in terms of job satisfaction. 2. Conceptual model and hypotheses development The theoretical basis for this study stems from the research by Fishbein and Ajzen (1975). The theory of reasoned action (TRA) indicates that the behavior, in this instance microcomputer usage, is influenced by individual perceptions and attitudes as well as by social influences. Deci’s (1975) distinction between intrinsic and extrinsic motivators of behavior suggests that individuals may be motivated to use microcomputers because of the intrinsic rewards derived (enjoyment and fun), perceived benefits (usefulness) or external pressure (social pressure). In applying this theory to the individualistic and collectivist cultures, particular aspects of the theory would be emphasized for different cultural settings. For instance, while emphasis on intrinsic motivation is typical of individualistic cultures, emphasis on external pressure is more typical of collectivist cultures such as Nigeria. This study also adopts the theoretical perspectives provided by DeLone and McLean (1992) in examining the impact microcomputer usage has on job satisfaction. The research model examined in this study is illustrated in Fig. 1. The model which is a representation of the theoretical perspectives discussed above hypothesizes that microcomputer usage has a direct effect on job satisfaction. The model also asserts that microcomputer usage is a function of three motivational factors, namely perceived usefulness, perceived enjoyment, and social pressure. In congruence with the cultural characteristics of a collectivist culture, while perceived usefulness and perceived enjoyment may not be related to microcomputer usage, social pressure will affect microcomputer usage. Perceived usefulness and perceived enjoyment are hypothesized not to be directly related to microcomputer usage. In addition it is also proposed that computer skill, organizational usage and support influence usage through perceived ease of use and the motivational factors. The network of relationships illustrated in the model and the rationale for the proposed linkages are explained in the ensuing section.
  • 4. 50 M. Anandarajan et al. / International Journal of Information Management 22 (2002) 47–65 H2 PERCEIVED H6 COMPUTER USEFULNESS SKILLS H7 H5 H3 H1 ORG PERCEIVED JOB PERCEIVED USAGE SUPPORT ENJOYMENT SATISFACTION EASE OF USE H8 ORG SOCIAL H4 USAGE PRESSURE Fig. 1. The research model. 2.1. The impact of microcomputer usage on job satisfaction The phenomenon of microcomputer acceptance has been studied by many researchers in terms of system usage. It is a key variable in most theoretical frameworks in the IS research literature focusing on the adoption of computer technologies by individual users. It is also an important variable in IT acceptance being apparently a good surrogate to gauge the effective deployment of IS resources in the organization. Davis, Bagozzi, and Warshaw (1989), Mathieson (1991) and Taylor and Todd (1995) argue that usage is a necessary condition for ensuring productivity payoffs from IS investments. However, it should be noted that system usage partially mediates the relationship between the three motivators (perceived usefulness, perceived enjoyment, and social pressure) and job satisfaction; hence these motivators have both direct and indirect effects on job satisfaction partially through system usage. Concerns over the possible negative impact of computers at the macro social and organizational levels (Whisler, 1970), as well as at the individual level (Martin, 1971), are not at all new in the IS literature. However, no consensus has emerged over the years regarding such effects, possibly due to the wide variety of mutually incompatible research perspectives used (Rice, 1986). Social and IS research studies also seem to suggest that while information technology may increase productivity, it can also degrade the work and social life of those who use it (Olson & Zanna, 1993). However, contradictory findings have been reported about the nature and direction of the effects of information technology on workers and their jobs. For instance, Ang and Soh (1997) report that system usage and job satisfaction are highly correlated whereas Kraut et al. (1989) concluded that the quality of work-life of individuals who use the system became poorer and had less variety. On the other hand, Bikson et al. (1985), Millman and Hartwick (1987) and Porter (1987) reported that with office automation, middle managers found their job more enriching, and the quality of work life enhanced. Finally, Kaye and Sutton (1985) claim that ‘‘the overall impact seems to have been positive for the majority of participants’’, even as they acknowledge the possibility of both positive and negative impacts. The confusion created by such contradictory findings has been well articulated by Attewell and Rule (1984). They argue that research evidence in this area is ‘‘fragmentary and very mixed’’
  • 5. 51 M. Anandarajan et al. / International Journal of Information Management 22 (2002) 47–65 (p. 1184) and that none of the studies mounted so far had been capable of yielding a persuasive and comprehensive view of the consequences of computer acceptance. Further, DeLone and McLean (1992) propose that system utilization and job satisfaction are direct antecedents of individual impact. This study seeks to empirically investigate the consequences of computer acceptance, particularly in a computing environment, where everyone is expected to have free access to a machine. However, with the mixed findings in this area, as well as the collectivist- oriented perspective adopted in this paper, we hypothesize that: H1. Microcomputer usage is related to job satisfaction 2.2. Motivational variables 2.2.1. Perceived usefulness This motivational factor is defined as ‘‘the degree to which a person believes that using a particular system would enhance his or her job’’ (Davis, 1989, p. 320). The importance of perceived usefulness as an important motivating factor derives from the TRA and TAM models, which propose that perceived usefulness affects microcomputer usage due to reinforcement values of outcomes. Adams, Nelson, and Todd (1992) and Davis et al. (1989) report that user acceptance of computer systems is driven to a large extent by perceived usefulness. In addition, Davis et al. (1989) found that perceived usefulness exhibited a stronger and more consistent relationship with usage than did other variables reported in the literature including various attitudes, satisfaction and perceptions measures. A cultural dimension that was not related to Hofstede’s dimensions of culture, but has enormous management implications is the abstractive versus associative character in cultures (Kedia & Bhagat, 1991). This dimension examines patterns of thinking and perception that affects various aspects of employee behavior. In abstractive cultures, which are found in regions such as North America, and Europe, people think and behave in a linear fashion using a rational cause and effect paradigm to create perceptions. In associative cultures which are typically found among Africans, Asians and Arabs perceptions and behavior are often diffuse i.e., they utilize associations among events that may not have logical basis (Micheal, 1997). Previous studies involving subjects from abstractive cultures have shown that perceived usefulness is positively related with system usage (Robey, 1979; Thompson, Higgins, & Howell, 1991). Since employees in Nigeria would be from an associative culture, we hypothesize that, H2. Perceived usefulness is not related to microcomputer usage and job satisfaction 2.2.2. Perceived enjoyment The use of microcomputers may also be motivated by intrinsic psychological rewards. Perceived enjoyment and fun represent an intrinsic motivation for use of microcomputers. It represented a type of intellectual playfulness and is defined as an individual characteristic that described an individual’s tendency to interact spontaneously, inventively, and imaginatively with the computer. Empirical research indicates that the general characteristics of enjoyment/fun relate positively to creativity and exploratory type of behavior during interaction with computers (Webster, 1992). Research indicates that individuals who experience pleasure and joy from using the computer and
  • 6. 52 M. Anandarajan et al. / International Journal of Information Management 22 (2002) 47–65 perceive any activity involving use of microcomputers as inherently enjoyable, apart from any anticipated improvement in performance, are likely to use it more extensively than others (Davis, 1992; Malone, 1981; Webster, 1989). Davis et al. (1989) found that while perceived usefulness emerged as the major determinant of computer acceptance in the workplace, enjoyment and fun had a significant effect beyond perceived usefulness. Hofstede’s cultural dimension of uncertainty avoidance relates to the extent to which people are threatened by uncertainty or unstructured situations. Since playfulness involves creativity as well as unstructured experimentation with computer-based tasks, it could be argued that employees from high uncertainty avoidance cultures such as Nigeria, would not be motivated to perceive using the computer as enjoyment/fun. Thus, it is hypothesized that, H3. Perceived enjoyment is not likely related to microcomputer usage and job satisfaction 2.2.3. Social pressure This represents the third motivational factor influencing microcomputer usage. According to the TRA model, in addition to the individual’s perceptions and beliefs, social influences may affect behavior (Ajzen, 1985). They use the term ‘‘subjective norms’’ to refer to the person’s perception of the social pressures put on him or her to perform the behavior in question’’ (p. 6). Social pressure can affect the attitudes and behavior of individuals in varying degrees in different societies depending on the culture. Researchers such as Hofstede (1994) and Adler (1995) maintain that the individualism- collectivism dimension is an important means of understanding the motives of human action and behavior (Ali, 1988). This perspective refers to the cultural dispositions to understand people’s needs to either satisfy personal aspirations or attend to group needs, respectively. In highly collectivistic cultures such as Nigeria, an employee’s actions are typically influenced by the expectations of people around him/her, especially the group he/she identifies with. Such in-group identification is typically carried over to the work environment, where social pressure from management influences the attitudes and behavior of the workers. Therefore, in terms of the underlying motivation to accept technology, individuals from a collectivistic culture may use microcomputers not because of their potential usefulness or the enjoyment to be derived, but because of the perceived social pressure from their supervisors as well as peers. These individuals will conform to the accepted social norm in using computerized systems because of their belief that they will be perceived as being technologically sophisticated by those whom they consider important to their future well-being. Therefore, the following hypothesis is proposed: H4. Social pressure is positively related to microcomputer usage and job satisfaction 2.3. Antecedent factors 2.3.1. Perceived ease of use This factor refers to ‘‘the degree to which a person believes that using a particular system would be free of effort’’ (Davis, 1989, p. 320). Davis et al. (1989) identified ease of use as an important determinant of system usage through perceived usefulness. In addition, Davis et al. (1989) suggest that
  • 7. 53 M. Anandarajan et al. / International Journal of Information Management 22 (2002) 47–65 perceived ease of use may actually be a casual antecedent to perceived usefulness. In high uncertainty avoidance culture where employees seek more structure, perceived ease of use would promote positive attitudes towards computers. With such predisposition, employees will readily yield to social pressure, perceive the computer as useful, and perceive it to be enjoyable. Hence, we hypothesize: H5. Perceived ease of use is positively related to perceived usefulness, perceived enjoyment and social pressure 2.3.2. Computer skills Computer skills are acquired through training. Based on the theoretical model of Zmud (1979), individual characteristics such as computer skills have been reported to play an important role in the eventual success of information systems. Prior research related to training that was conducted in developed countries has shown that user training and computer experience is positively related to usage (Gannon, 1994; Grant, 1989). However, as prior research has found the effect of training can depend on the individualism–collectivism dimension. Research indicates such individually- based training can have no effect on improved self-efficacy and performance in a collectivistic setting, such as Nigeria. Thus, the following hypothesis is proposed H6. Individually-based computer training has no influence on perceived ease of use and the motivational factors 2.3.3. Organizational factors This includes organizational support and organizational usage. Organizational support refers to positive attitude towards microcomputers, top management endorsements of efforts of the staff to provide training information, and consulting on data access, system development, and operations (DeLone & McLean, 1992). The positive relationship between organizational support and system usage is documented in the literature (Fishbein & Ajzen, 1975; Foster & Cornford, 1992). Lack of organizational support is noted to adversely affect effective utilization of computers (Davis, 1989; Fornell, 1982). It was also found that organizational support is associated with greater system usage and lack of organizational support is considered as a critical barrier to the effective utilization of computers (Davis, 1989; Hair, Anderson, Tatham, & Black, 1992). Managers who exhibit supporting behavior show concern, consideration, and acceptance of the needs and feelings of others. Supporting is more likely to be displayed by managers and be received favorably by employees when a society values cooperation and harmony between the organization and employee. These work values are associated with collectivist and feminine cultures (Hofstede, 1997). Support plays an important function in high power distance cultures, because they are used to maintain inequalities between the employer and employee. Therefore, we hypothesize that, H7. Organizational support is positively related to perceived ease of use and the motivational factors 2.3.4. Organizational usage Characteristics of the organizational environment can play a role in motivating employees to use computers. In organizations where microcomputers are widely used, individuals are likely to
  • 8. 54 M. Anandarajan et al. / International Journal of Information Management 22 (2002) 47–65 perceive this as the norm and be favorably disposed towards using computers. Studies in individualist cultures such as the U.S have found that extensive organizational usage had a strong effect on individual usage (Igbaria, Parasuraman, & Baroudi, 1996; Thompson et al., 1991). In the case of a developing country such as Nigeria with a collectivist culture, extensive organizational usage could be strongly associated with individual usage, however, the motivating factors would be different. For instance, availability of computers in the organization would provide more exposure, more familiarity, and perceived ease of use. However, individual usage will increase to the effect that organizational usage is aligned with the expectations of the company, management, peers, or a particular in-group that employees could identify with. Thus, it is hypothesized that in a collectivist culture such as Nigeria, H8. Organizational usage is positively related to perceived ease of use and the motivational factors 3. Methodology 3.1. Sample The data for this study were gathered through means of a survey questionnaire administrated to 175 individuals in nine organizations in Lagos, the largest metropolitan city in Nigeria. The organizations included six banks, two oil companies and a computer learning center. Prior to distribution, the survey language was checked by two Nigerian professors to ensure consistency in meaning. Only slight modifications were necessary since English is the language of communica- tion and transaction in Nigeria. Each survey contained a cover letter explaining the purpose of the study. The survey was administered to employees in the nine organizations through contact persons established by one of the researchers. These contact people were typically middle-level managers in their respective organizations. For each site, the contact person requested the number of surveys that could be administered based on the number of employees who use computers in their work. Participation was voluntary, and participants were assured that their responses would be treated with confidentiality. Of the 200 surveys prepared, 170 were completed and returned. However, only 143 usable surveys were retained for data analysis, providing a response rate of 71%. Table 1 summarizes the profile of the respondents. As can be observed, the respondents included 28% of professional staff and over 50% held supervisory to middle management positions. Ten percent of those sampled held support staff positions and 2% were from top management. Seventy-two percent of those sampled had at least a college degree. The average age of the respondents was 32.3 years, and 72.7% were male. 3.2. Measures 3.2.1. Job satisfaction Job satisfaction was measured with items adopted from Bikson et al. (1985) and Kraut et al. (1989). Individuals were asked to indicate the general impact of using computers on their job satisfaction and the kind of projects they handled as part of their job. Four items were used and
  • 9. 55 M. Anandarajan et al. / International Journal of Information Management 22 (2002) 47–65 Table 1 Profile of respondents Mean=32.3 Range=21–61 Age Male=72.7% Female=27.3% Gender Education Some high school or less 1.4 High school 3.5 Some college 17.5 Bachelor’s degree 31.5 Some graduate or professional study 14.7 Graduate or professional degree 26.6 Organization hierarchy Support staff 9.8 Professional staff 28.0 First level supervisor 25.2 Middle management 25.9 Top management 2.1 they asked individuals to self-report on the perceived impact of computer systems on the level of their job satisfaction. Each item was measured on a five-point Likert scale ranging from (1) greatly decreased to (5) greatly increased. 3.2.2. Microcomputer usage Based on several studies (Igbaria, Pavri, & Huff, 1989; Srinivasan, 1985; Thompson et al., 1991) three indicators of microcomputer usage were included in this study: (1) self-reported daily use of microcomputer; (2) self-reported frequency of use of microcomputers; and (3) number of computerized applications used by employees. Individuals were asked to indicate the amount of time spent on the microcomputer per day, using a six-point scale ranging from 1 (almost never) to 6 (more than 3 h per day). Frequency of use has been suggested by Raymond (1985) and used by Igbaria et al. (1989) provided a better indicator of the extensiveness of usage than measures of time spent. Frequency of use was measured on a six-point scale ranging from 1 (less than once a month) to 6 (several times a day). In terms of the number of applications used, the questionnaire listed ten different types of software applications, such as word processing, spreadsheets, database management, graphics, electronic mail, graphics, project management (Igbaria et al., 1989; Panko, 1987). The integration between microcomputers and host computers in the user computing environment brings more variety and diversity to the software applications available to end-users (Igbaria et al., 1989; Lee, 1986; Panko, 1987). In this study, users had a wide choice of software packages. Observation of the diversity of such applications among the end-users can provide a good indication of the overall microcomputer usage in this environment. The participants were asked to indicate whether they personally used these applications. The number of applications used by the participants, ranging from 0 to 10, was used as an overall
  • 10. 56 M. Anandarajan et al. / International Journal of Information Management 22 (2002) 47–65 indicator of this measure. These indicators are typical of the kinds of self-reported measures often used to operationalize system use and acceptance, particularly in cases where objective use and acceptance metrics are not available. Self-reported utilization should not be regarded as a precise measure of actual utilization, although previous research suggests it is appropriate as relative measures. 3.2.3. Perceived usefulness This measure is defined as ‘‘the prospective user’s subjective probability that using a specific application system will increase his or her job performance within an organizational context’’ (Davis, 1989). The four items used to construct the perceived usefulness scale were adapted from prior research (Davis, 1989; Davis et al., 1989; Igbaria, 1990), with appropriate modifications to make them specifically relevant to microcomputers. Individuals were asked to indicate the extent of agreement or disagreement with four statements concerning microcomputers on a seven-point Likert-type scale ranging from 1 (strongly disagree) to 7 (strongly agree). The measure included items such as ‘‘Using a microcomputer improves my productivity on the job;’’ and ‘‘Using a microcomputer could provide me with information that would lead to better decisions.’’ 3.2.4. Perceived enjoyment and fun According to the work of Davis et al. (1989), perceived enjoyment/fun refers ‘‘to the extent to which the activity of using the computer is perceived to be enjoyable in its own right, apart from any performance consequences that may be anticipated’’ (p. 113). Four different pairs from the evaluation dimension of the semantic differential were used on seven-point semantic differential items to assess perceived enjoyment. Individuals were asked to rate the four items according to how they felt about using microcomputers and to check off items that best described their opinion or feeling (i.e., using a microcomputer in my job is: rewarding/punishing; pleasurable/painful, fun/ frustrating, and beneficial/harmful). 3.2.5. Social pressure The measure was operationalized in accordance with guidelines suggested by Fishbein and Ajzen (1975) and used in examining microcomputer usage (Igbaria et al., 1996). Individuals were asked to indicate their agreement or disagreement with the following statements: ‘‘In general, people in the organization think I should use microcomputers in my job,’’ ‘‘My immediate supervisors think I should use the microcomputer more in my job’’ and ‘‘My peers think I should use the computer regularly.’’ The response options were anchored in a five-point scale, ranging from 1 (strongly agree) to 5 (strongly disagree). 3.2.6. Perceived ease of use This measure refers to the degree to which microcomputers is perceived as relatively easy to understand and use and was adapted from Davis et al. (1989), with appropriate modifications to make it specifically relevant to microcomputers. Individuals were asked to indicate their degree of agreement on a five-point scale, ranging from 1 (strongly agree) to 5 (strongly disagree) on the following statements: ‘‘Learning to use microcomputers would be easy for me;’’ ‘‘I would find it easy to get microcomputers to do what I want to do;’’ ‘‘It would be easy for me to become skillful at using microcomputers;’’ and ‘‘I would find microcomputers easy to use.’’
  • 11. 57 M. Anandarajan et al. / International Journal of Information Management 22 (2002) 47–65 3.2.7. Computer skills Computer skills are defined as a combination of users’ experience and computer training. Computer experience was assessed by six items asking respondents to indicate the extent of their experiences using different types of computer software and languages and participating in the development of computerized information systems. The response option ranged from (1) none to (5) extremely extensive. Computer training was measured by individual’s responses to four questions which asked them to report the extent of training in microcomputers they had received from four sources: college courses; vendor training; in-house training; and self-training. The response option ranged from (1) none to (5) extremely extensive (Fornell, 1982; Igbaria, 1993). 3.2.8. Organizational support and usage The measure of organizational support assessed general support, which included encourage- ment by top management and allocation of adequate resources. Individuals were asked to indicate the extent of agreement or disagreement with eight statements concerning organizational support on a five-point scale ranging from 1 (strongly agree) to 5 (strongly disagree). One example of the items was: ‘‘Management has provided the necessary help and resources to get me used to the Internet quickly.’’ Items were reverse coded such that high scores reflected high organizational support. 4. Data analysis Partial least squares (PLS) was used to test the hypothesized relationships among the study variables. PLS is a second-generation multivariate technique that facilitates testing of the psychometric properties of the scales used to measure a variable, as well as estimation of the parameters of a structural model, i.e., the strength and direction of the relationships among the model variables (Fornell, 1982; Lohmoller, 1989; Wold, 1982). The test of the measurement model includes estimation of the reliability coefficients (composite reliability) of the measures, as well as the examination of the convergent and discriminant validity of the research instruments. In determining the appropriate minimum loading required for the inclusion of an item within a scale, we used Fornell’s (1982) recommendation to retain items that loaded highly (0.70 is considered to be a high loading since the items explain almost 50% of the variance in a particular construct) on their respective constructs. Fornell and Larcker’s (1981) criterion that an average extracted variance should be 0.50 or more was used to assess the average variance extracted for all constructs. We also used the guidelines recommended by Hair, Anderson, Tatham, and Black (1995) in determining the relative importance and significance of the factor loading of each item, i.e., loadings greater than 0.30 are considered significant; loadings greater than 0.40 are considered important; and loadings 0.50 or greater are considered to be very significant. Finally, the criteria suggested by Nunnally (1978) were applied to determine the adequacy of the reliability coefficients obtained for each measure. To assess discriminant validity of the measures, i.e., the degree to which items differentiate among constructs or measure distinct concepts, we examined the correlations between the measures of potentially overlapping constructs (Grant, 1989). If the items comprising an instrument that measures a construct correlate more highly with each other than with items
  • 12. 58 M. Anandarajan et al. / International Journal of Information Management 22 (2002) 47–65 measuring other constructs in the model, the measure is determined to have adequate discriminant validity. The evaluation of the structural model was conducted with the total sample. The computer program used for this analysis was latent variables path analysis using partial least squares (LVPLS 1.6) developed by Lohmoller (1989). To test the estimated path coefficients, t-statistics were calculated using a nonparametric test of significance known as jackknifing (Tukey, 1958; Wildt, Lambert, & Durand, 1982). The path coefficient of an exogenous variable represents the direct effect of that variable on the endogenous variable. An indirect effect represents the effect of a particular variable on the second variable through its effects on a third mediating variable. It is the product of the path coefficients along an indirect route from cause to effect via tracing arrows in the headed direction only. When more than one indirect path exists, the total indirect effect is their sum. The sum of the direct and indirect effect reflects the total effect of the variable on the endogenous variable (Alwin & Hauser, 1975; Ross, 1975). 5. Results 5.1. The measurement model Table 2 presents the results of the test of the measurement model. The data show that the measures of the constructs examined in this study are robust in terms of their internal consistency reliability as indexed by coefficient alpha. The composite reliabilities of the different constructs included in the model range from 0.75 to 0.93, which exceed the recommended values in Nunnally’s (1978) guidelines. The results also demonstrate satisfactory convergent and discriminant validity of the measures. Consistent with the recommendations of Fornell and Larcker (1981), average variance extracted for all constructs exceeded 0.50. The intercorrelations among the items measuring each construct are stronger than their correlations with items representing other constructs. Table 3 presents the intercorrelations among the study variables. In all the 36 entries examined, the squared correlations, representing the shared variance among variables, are found not to Table 2 Assessment of the measurement model Variables The composite reliability Average variance explained Job satisfaction 0.86 0.56 System usage 0.75 0.50 Perceived usefulness 0.89 0.67 Perceived enjoyment and fun 0.86 0.61 Social pressure 0.93 0.80 Perceived ease of use 0.86 0.61 Organizational usage 0.86 0.67 Organizational support 0.91 0.67 Skills 0.84 0.73
  • 13. 59 M. Anandarajan et al. / International Journal of Information Management 22 (2002) 47–65 Table 3 Intercorrelation among study variablesa Variables 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 1. Job satisfaction 0.56 2. System usage 0.32 0.50 3. Perceived usefulness 0.39 0.24 0.67 4. Perceived enjoyment and fun 0.29 0.19 0.31 0.61 5. Social pressure 0.20 0.48 0.33 0.24 0.80 6. Perceived ease of use 0.25 0.33 0.54 0.31 0.10 0.61 7. Organizational usage 0.02 0.20 0.00 0.12 0.36 0.02 0.67 8. Organizational support 0.28 0.48 0.25 0.58 0.37 0.29 0.35 0.67 9. Skills 0.10 0.42 0.02 0.17 0.12 0.15 0.06 0.23 0.73 a Note: The absolute value of correlation >0.17 are significant at level 0.05 or lower. The diagonals represent the average variance explained. exceed the average variance explained. This suggests that our constructs are distinct and unidimensional constructs. In summary, the convergent and discriminant validity of our instruments is satisfactory. 5.2. Tests of the structural model The results of the multivariate test of the structural model are presented in Tables 4 and 5. Partial support was obtained for hypothesis (H8) where only social pressure had a strong direct effect (g ¼ 0:48; po0:001), on organizational usage. Similarly, hypothesis (H7) was partially supported, where organizational support, was found to have a strong direct effect on perceived ease of use, perceived enjoyment and social pressure, but no significant effect on perceived usefulness. As stated in hypothesis (H6) computer skills had no effect with perceived ease of use as well as the motivational variables. Consistent with our hypothesis (H5), perceived ease of use explained a large portion of the variance of perceived usefulness. While perceived ease of use had a strong direct effect on perceived usefulness (g ¼ 0:52; po0:001), and perceived enjoyment (g ¼ 0:17; po0:001) it had no significant effect on social pressure. Table 5 shows that the determinants of system usage explained 28% of its variance. Perceived ease of use (g ¼ 0:23; po0:01) and social pressure (b ¼ 0:41; po0:01) had strong direct effects on system usage. It should be noted that, consistent with our hypotheses (H2 and H3), perceived usefulness and perceived enjoyment had no direct effects on usage. The results also show that the antecedent factors and motivational factors considered in this study explain 24% of the variance in job satisfaction. Consistent with our expectations, system usage is positively related to job satisfaction (b ¼ 0:26; po0:01). The data show that perceived usefulness and perceived enjoyment had the strongest direct effect on job satisfaction (b ¼ 0:31 and 0.17, po0:01; respectively). It should also be noted that perceived ease of use had only indirect effect mainly through perceived usefulness and usage on job satisfaction. Contrary to hypothesis (H4), the contribution of social pressure on job satisfaction is not significant.
  • 14. 60 M. Anandarajan et al. / International Journal of Information Management 22 (2002) 47–65 Table 4 Prediction of perceived usefulness and perceived enjoyment Variables Perceived ease of use Perceived usefulness Direct Indirect Total Skills 0.08 0.12 0.04 0.16 Organizational usage 0.09 0.06 0.05 0.11 0.30a 0.31a Organizational support 0.15 0.16 0.52a 0.52a Perceived ease of use 0.10a 0.32a R2 a po0:01: In summary, the tests of the structural model show that perceived ease of use and social pressure are important factors affecting system usage in Nigeria. As expected and contrary to current IS literature based in North America, perceived usefulness and perceived enjoyment had no effect on usage. It is noted that individuals in Nigeria are more affected by normative and social values, which individualized benefits, derived from the systems. Contrary to our expectations, we found that perceived usefulness and perceived enjoyment had direct effects on job satisfaction. System usage also affected job satisfaction, though its effect was smaller. The results also demonstrated the importance of system usage and perceived usefulness in mediating the relationship of perceived ease of use on job satisfaction. 6. Discussion The present study integrated the theoretical perspectives and empirical findings of research on microcomputer usage and its impact on individuals. A structural model is proposed and tested, examining the role of antecedent factors as well as three motivators on promoting microcomputer usage by managers and the impact of these variables on job satisfaction. Unlike findings from developed countries (Igbaria et al., 1996), the results of this study indicate that perceived usefulness and perceived enjoyment are not factors, which motivate individuals to use microcomputers. Organizational support and social pressure are shown to be factors, which influence microcomputer usage. In addition perceived ease of use has strong influence on perceived usefulness as well as microcomputer usage. As discussed previously the difference between the findings of this study and studies conducted in North America can be attributed to the phenomenon of national culture. Hofstede’s studies have shown that North American countries are characterized by low collectivism and low uncertainty avoidance. In other words, individuals in this region are highly self-reliant (Hofstede, 1984) and thus have little concern for status and formality; they often bypass their superiors to perform their tasks (Adler, 1995). In addition, these countries are dominated by individuals with ‘‘doing-oriented cultures’’ (Maznevski & DiStefano, 1995). Individuals from doing-oriented cultures typically stress accomplishments, work hard to achieve goals, and maximize work effort. Therefore, individuals in developed countries will be influenced to use microcomputer technology as a tool for efficient and effective work practices as well a tool required for self-advancement.
  • 15. M. Anandarajan et al. / International Journal of Information Management 22 (2002) 47–65 Table 5 Prediction of system usage and job satisfactiona Variables Perceived enjoyment Social pressure System usage Job satisfaction Direct Indirect Total Direct Indirect Total Direct Indirect Total Direct Indirect Total Skills 0.04 0.02 0.06 0.03 0.00 0.03 0.00 0.02 0.02 0.00 0.02 0.02 0.48a 0.48a Organizational usage 0.02 0.02 0.04 0.00 0.00 0.03 0.03 0.00 0.02 0.02 0.38a 0.43a 0.21a 0.22a Organizational support 0.05 0.01 0.00 0.08 0.08 0.00 0.06 0.06 0.17a 0.17a 0.23a 0.28a 0.20a Perceived ease of use 0.02 0.02 0.05 0.01 0.19 0.31a 0.32a Perceived usefulness 0.05 0.05 0.01 0.17a 0.19a Perceived enjoyment 0.09 0.09 0.02 0.41a 0.41a 0.18a Social pressure 0.07 0.11 0.26a 0.26a System usage 0.15a 0.38a 0.28a 0.24a R2 a po0:01: 61
  • 16. 62 M. Anandarajan et al. / International Journal of Information Management 22 (2002) 47–65 In contrast, the West African culture is dominated by high collectivism and high uncertainty avoidance, i.e., an individuals beliefs depend on the social norms of the group (Kluckhorn & Strodtbeck, 1961) as well as expecting managers to set the standards to be followed. Individuals in this region are also being-oriented, meaning that they work only as much as needed to be able to live, and minimize work (Adler, 1995). Individuals follow their manager’s directives and use microcomputers regardless of accrued benefits. In a similar vein, recent studies in the marketing literature have also confirmed the importance and dynamics of social pressure on consumer behavior. For instance Takada and Jain (1991), have found that the diffusion of consumer goods in South Korea and Taiwan are directly influenced by social value systems. Hofstede (1984) argues in several contexts that the popular theories are culture bound. The theoretical basis of this study is the TAM, which is derived from the TRA model. A salient difference between the two models is that TAM omits subjective norms, primarily because they are not significant in explaining behavioral intentions (Davis et al., 1989). As indicated by the results of this study the importance of subjective norms can be assumed to be related to cultural factors leading to the interesting question as to what extent the TAM may be valid in more collective societies than North America. In other words this research suggests that the external validity (generalizability) of TAM in other cultures is questionable. The findings of the present study contribute to a better theoretical understanding of the factors that promote microcomputer usage. It should be noted, however, that the model variables explained 28% of the variance on usage and 24% on the variance of job satisfaction. That a large percentage of the usage and job satisfaction variance remains unexplained suggests the need for additional research incorporating potential unmeasured variables in the current study. Important among these are user participation and involvement, self-efficacy, and task characteristics (Davis et al., 1989). Furthermore, it is possible that the variables have interactive effects on motivation to use microcomputers and eventual usage. Finally, while cross-cultural studies such as the present one are useful in identifying the patterns of relationships among the relevant variables, a longitudinal research design is essential to confirm the causal linkages among the study variables. The strengths of the findings would also be enhanced by the use of both subjective and objective measures of usage and performance. The results of this study have far reaching implications for developed countries as well. Recent trends in international trade and foreign direct investment have significantly increased the global role of multinational organizations in LDCs. Internal coordination in these organizations requires a salient understanding of the local culture. Thus, incorporating IT without regard to local culture could lead to detrimental results. References Adams, D. A., Nelson, R. R., & Todd, P. A. (1992). Perceived usefulness ease of use and usage of information technology: A replication. MIS Quarterly, 16, 227–247. Adler, N. J. (1995). International dimensions of organizational behavior. Cincinnati, OH: South-Western Publishing. Aharoni, Y., & Burton, R. M. (1994). Is management science international: In research of universal rules. Management Science, 40, 1–3.
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