Examine ERP post-implementation stages of use and value: Empirical evidence from Portuguese SMEs

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There is a great interest among researchers and practitioners in accounting information systems (AIS) value. This is particularly important in cases of systems such as enterprise resource planning (ERP). This paper empirically measures and analyses the determinants of ERP use and value in a single framework, as well as provides empirical evidence from Portuguese small and medium enterprises (SMEs). Drawing upon theories on the process and contexts of information technology (IT) we postulate nine hypotheses. Used the technology-organization-environment (TOE) framework to hypothesize how compatibility, complexity, efficiency, best-practices, training, and competitive pressure explain ERP use. Based on the resource-based view (RBV) theory we hypothesize how ERP use, collaboration and analytics explain ERP value, and its potential contribution for the nature of management control and accounting information systems on Portuguese SMEs. Through structural equation modeling, a data set of 134 web-surveyed firms is used to test the hypotheses. Our empirical analysis leads to six main findings: 1) compatibility, complexity, best-practices, and efficiency are more important determinants for ERP use as well as training and competitive pressure, suggesting that technological, organizational and environmental characteristics are the main drivers of ERP use among Portuguese SMEs. 2) Similarly, collaboration and analytics are more important for ERP value upon use, suggesting that system capability characteristics are the main drivers of ERP value. 3) ERP value benefits from system enhancements to firms' business processes in the post-implementation phases. 4) For Portuguese SMEs the mostly valued metric attained through ERP is management control. 5) Impelled by legislation, Portuguese SMEs are using ERP as the accounting system for management, financial and tax accounting. 6) Portuguese SMEs invest more than 70% of their annual IT budget to ERP use. Together, these findings offer insights into how Portuguese SMEs use and extract value from ERP, and how enhancements positively impact the system's value. Unlike the typical focus on ERP adoption described in the literature, this research focuses on the post-implementation phase, linking actual use with value creation, adding an empirical study to the AIS literature.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)166-184
Number of pages19
JournalInternational Journal Of Accounting Information Systems
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2014


  • ERP
  • Portugal
  • Post-implementation
  • Resource-based view
  • SME
  • Technology-organization-environment
  • Use
  • Value


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