Discuss the reasons as to why organizations fail to achieve their system development objectives.

A Management Information System ICT Revision Questions and Answers

These are many reasons why organizations fail to achieve their systems development objectives:
i) Lack of senior management support for and involvement in information systems development:
Developers and users of information systems will watch senior management to determine, which systems development projects are important and will act accordingly shifting their efforts away from any project not receiving management attention. In addition, management can see that adequate resources, as well as budgetary control over use of those resources, are dedicated to the project.

ii) Shifting user needs:
User requirements for information technology are constantly changing. As these changes accelerate, there will be more requests for systems development and more development projects. When these changes occur during a development process, the development team may be faced with the challenge of developing systems whose very purposes have changed since the development process began.

iii) Development of strategic systems:
Because strategic decision making is unstructured, the requirements, specification and objectives for such development projects are difficult to define and determining ‗successful‘ development will be elusive.

iv) New technology:

When an organization tries to create a competitive advantage applying advanced information technology, it generally finds that attaining systems development objectives is more difficult because personnel are not as familiar with the technology.

v) Lack of standard project management and systems development methodologies:
Some organizations do not formalise their project management and systems development methodologies, theremaking it very difficult to consistently complete projects on time or within budget.

vi) Overworked or under-trained development staff:
In addition to being overworked, system developers often lack sufficient education background. Furthermore, many companies do little to help their development personnel to stay technically updated in these organizations; a training plan and training budget do not exist.

vii) Resistance to change:
People have a natural tendency to resist change, and information systems development projects signal changes often radical in the workplace. Business process re-engineering is often the catalyst for the systems development project. When personal perceive that the project will result in personnel cutbacks, threatened personnel will dig in their heels and the development project is doomed to failure. Personnel cutbacks often result when re-engineering projects really attempt at downsizing.

viii) Lack of user participation:
Users must participate in the development effort to define their requirements, feel ownership for project success and work to resolve development problems. User participation also helps reduce user resistance to change.

ix) Inadequate testing and user training:
New systems must be tested before installation to determine that they will operate correctly. Users must be trained to effectively utilize the new system.

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