Information Technology and Management

, Volume 18, Issue 1, pp 83–96 | Cite as

Enhancing development team flexibility in IS projects

  • Yuzhu Li
  • Morgan Shepherd
  • Julie Yu-Chih Liu
  • Gary Klein


Information system development projects face tremendous challenges because of business changes and technology changes. Research has shown that software team flexibility has a positive effect on project outcomes, but specific requirements for enhancing flexibility are lacking. Drawing from the input-mediator-outcome (IMO) team effectiveness framework, this research investigates the contextual inputs and team processes that lead to development team flexibility and how well team flexibility improves project outcomes. A survey was developed to consider a model derived from the IMO framework. One hundred fourteen members of information systems development project teams in China responded to the survey. Partial least squares analysis was used served to analyze the data. Results indicate that a participatory culture and cooperative norms are an effective foundation for improving required processes that include project coordination of the project and knowledge sharing activities. In turn, the improved process performance extends responses to changes in technology and the business climate. The improved flexibility in meeting change is predictive of outcomes related to project performance and quality of the final product.


Team flexibility Information systems development Project learning Coordination Team norms 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yuzhu Li
    • 1
  • Morgan Shepherd
    • 2
  • Julie Yu-Chih Liu
    • 3
    • 4
  • Gary Klein
    • 2
  1. 1.Charlton College of BusinessUniversity of Massachusetts DartmouthDartmouthUSA
  2. 2.College of Business and AdministrationThe University of Colorado Colorado SpringsColorado SpringsUSA
  3. 3.Department of Information ManagementYuan Ze UniversityTaoyuanTaiwan
  4. 4.Center for Big Data & Digital ConvergenceYuan Ze UniversityTaoyuanTaiwan

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