Journal of International Technology and Information Management

Document Type



The study examines the impact of Information Systems (IS) through a consideration of improved competitiveness within a multi-business Caribbean firm. The methodology draws on a participant-observer approach for data collection and compares the application of IS by three business units within each of three organizations. It is argued that while there is already a substantial amount of research on IS effectiveness its value in the context of developing countries such as those of the Caribbean will be most significant. In this context firms are perceived to face more constraints than in developed countries so there is a need to explicitly recognize the effects of ‘inhibitors’. The study finds that for two of these businesses IS can be shown to have contributed to improved competitiveness, while the third had a less satisfactory experience. Analysis of the data revealed that in the two business units where IS contributed the units had been able to improve specific business processes in pursuit of identified competitive strategies. In the unit that did not derive such advantages, limitations in the functionality of the core application combined with insufficient adjustment of business processes, led to the unsatisfactory results. It is also observed that the explanatory value of the empirical analysis is enhanced if we identify inhibitors of IS for competitive advantage and make their effects more explicit.