Loughborough University
Competences and Practices [EJIS]Ashurst, Doherty & Peppard -Repository Copy [February, 2011].pdf (175.54 kB)

Improving the impact of IT development projects: the Benefits Realization Capability Model

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journal contribution
posted on 2011-03-04, 12:10 authored by Colin Ashurst, Neil Doherty, Joe Peppard
The return that organizations derive from investments in information systems and technology continues to disappoint. While there are many theoretical prescriptions as to how the planned benefits from an IT project might best be realized, there is very little empirical evidence, as to whether such advice is being heeded in practice. Drawing on the resourcebased view of the firm, a conceptual model of a benefits realization capability is presented and developed. In this model, the benefits realisation capability is operationalized through four distinct competences, each of which is underpinned by a variety of socially defined practices. The model was populated by using a thorough review of the literature to identify and categorise those specific practices that have the potential to contribute to the effective achievement of benefits from IT investment projects. These practices are then studied in an empirical examination of 25 IT projects. The analysis finds no evidence of benefits realization practices being adopted in any consistent, comprehensive or coherent manner. Effective benefits realization requires an ongoing commitment to, and focus upon, the benefits, rather than the technology, throughout a system’s development, implementation and operation.



  • Business and Economics


  • Business


ASHURST, C., DOHERTY, N.F. and PEPPARD, J., 2008. Improving the impact of IT development projects: the Benefits Realization Capability Model. European Journal of Information Systems, 17 (4), pp. 352-370.


Palgrave Macmillan (© Operational Research Society)


  • AM (Accepted Manuscript)

Publication date



This is a post-peer-review, pre-copyedit version of an article published in the European Journal of Information Systems. The definitive publisher-authenticated version is available online at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1057/ejis.2008.33




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