Software as a Service Adoption: impact on IT workers and functions of IT Department

Mbuba, F
Wang, W
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Journal Article
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Airiti Press

Software as a Service (SaaS), a type of cloud computing is based on information technology (IT) capabilities in a utility model that enhances the reliability and scalability at relatively low costs as compared to on-premise IT systems. Other benefits SaaS provides to customers include: no upfront investment cost required, elasticity of computing resources, vendor support and upgrades, agile response to markets, usage metered as utility, resource pooling the ability to add computing resources as needed. Consequently, organisations may decide to adopt SaaS model based on these potential benefits. However, these benefits may have some implications on the roles of IT workers and functions of IT department. These implications include: changing IT workers’ skill sets requirements, widespread of layoffs of hardware IT workers, and IT department loses control of IT-Servers, and focuses more on data security, vendor management, as IT system support moves to cloud service provider. Similarly, IT workers believe that turning IT resource and support to a cloud service provider poses significant risks to their own jobs [1]. There is a lack of research conducted on the implications of SaaS model on IT department and associated human resource management. Thus, this paper seeks to fill this gap by examining how SaaS adoption may change IT workers’ roles and tasks, and functions of IT department. Drawing on adaptive structuration theory, a modified framework is constructed to support the change dynamics from SaaS adoption. Using examples of functions of IT department in tertiary institutions, we explored sources of structures from advanced IT and the ways in which organisational and human interactions have an impact on how SaaS is appropriated and institutionalised into business processes, and brings about changes in an organisation. This paper contributes to the theory by examining the way emergent and new structures are formulated at the macro and group level of the organisational structure. Implications for researchers and practitioners are provided

Adaptive structuration theory , Cloud computing , IT outsourcing , IT workers , Organisational change , Software as a service
Journal of Internet Technology, vol.15(1), pp.103 - 114 (11)
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