Taking the High Road to Web Services Implementation: An Exploratory Investigation of the Organizational Impacts Academic Article uri icon


  • The increasing adoption of Web services is one of the most important technological trends in contemporary business organizations. This trend is motivated by claims about the ability of Web services to facilitate information technology (IT) flexibility, improve information management, and even lead to a competitive advantage. However, as the move towards Web services is gaining momentum, research about their organizational consequences remains mostly conceptual. This exploratory study empirically investigates whether the implementation of Web services applications is associated with these technological, informational, and strategic impacts. A field study approach is employed to collect cross-sectional data from 293 IT managers in Israel. Data analysis generally supports the research hypotheses, showing that the implementation of Web services applications positively affects the flexibility of IT infrastructure resources and information flexibility. The results also show that a specific implementation -- an Enterprise Information Portal -- also has positive effects on the flexibility of IT infrastructure capabilities, information quality, and IT-based competitive advantage. Finally, the results demonstrate the magnitude of the organizational impacts of Web services applications by comparing them to those of non-Web ERP systems. The implications of the findings for practice and research are discussed

publication date

  • January 1, 2009