Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1946/10319
This research studied the implementation and use of ERMS in eight organizations in Iceland. Four organizations, where 34 employees were interviewed, were studied in detail. Seven participant observations were also conducted in these organizations. Four other organizations, where four key employees were interviewed, corroborated the findings. Six consultants/teachers at six different software providers were also interviewed, making the total number of interviewees 44. One participant observation was conducted as well at one of the software providers.
These eight organizations operated in different fields of industry. They had implemented four different ERMS with two using each system. The organizations were both public and private. They are representative of medium to large size organizations in Iceland and had experienced varying success rates in the implementation, although detailed results were not known before this study.
ERMS are systems to manage records during their lifetime. The systems studied met all RM requirements. They were all part of a groupware and were those that had gained the widest distribution on the Icelandic market. The aim of the research was to discover why and how ERMS were being implemented and to find out whether and how employees were actually using ERMS. The study aimed at examining the association between the implementation and the use of ERMS. The focus was to discover which implementation factors influenced a successful outcome and the actual use as well as the perceived objectives of the implementation.
The study discovered that there was a strong correlation between the most important input factors and the outcomes that they influence. There were mainly three implementation factors that appeared to be most important for the success of the implementation. These were support by top management, co-operation between the IT and RM functions in the system development and in the training, and the training of the users who should receive both basic training in RM and comprehensive training in using the system. The study also revealed the importance of having users participate in the implementation process, particularly in fitting the records classification scheme (FCS) to the ERMS.
The study revealed how employees used ERMS, how they registered records into the system and which search parameters they used. These work procedures were identified both for records created in-house and those received. E-mail was the form of the records that was a problem in RM, frequently neither captured into ERMS nor filed as paper records. Training was most influential in determining the level of use by employees, but their participation in adapting the FCS to the ERMS influenced their skills in registering and searching for records in ERMS and how user-friendly they found the system to be.
Employees did not object to sharing their completed work with their co-workers, indicating that ERMS could be effective systems for quality RM and productive group work, if successfully implemented.
These findings are of value to the management of organizations in Iceland that want to introduce or reintroduce ERMS. The theoretical contribution of the study is the uncovering of the input factors of implementation that influence the outcome factors. These findings can, therefore, be of value to middle-sized organizations in Western Europe, North America and Australia as the organizational culture regarding work, co-operation and competition and style of management is not that different in these other parts of the world.