Empirical Analysis for the Factors Affecting the Adoption of Cloud Computing Initiatives by Information Technology Executives

Article excerpt

Abstract

The tremendous explosion of technology acceptance theories has not spared the corpus of technology adoption literature from criticism that most of these models only evaluate the adoption of new technology from a single perspective. In an effort to attenuate this criticism, this breaks ranks with extant theories and proposes a unified model for evaluating technology adoption from multiple perspectives. The Technology Trade Theory (Triple-T) model which this study proposes integrates the Social Exchange Theory into the Technology Acceptance Model, and proposes that technology acceptance is a function of a deliberate process of weighing the advantages associated with that technology against its disadvantages. Adoption only happens when the advantages outweigh the disadvantages; otherwise, prospective adopters reject the technology. In this, the model recognizes a total of eight advantages and eight disadvantages associated with cloud computing, on the basis of which its claims are validated.

Data is collected by means of structured psychometric scales administered to a panel of medium and top level IT managers. Psychometric scales are also used to attach weights to each of the variables under study. The Pearson's coefficient and paired tailed tests are used to analyze the nature, strength and significance of the findings. Findings validate the major claims of the study, on the basis of which research implications are extensively discussed.

Keywords: Cloud computing, Triple-T, Technology acceptance, Integrative technology adoption model, Social exchange theory.

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Introduction

Cloud computing is one of the emerging areas in the field of information science and has been billed as a hot-growth area based on its potential benefits. Though the adoption of cloud computing has been growing, its rate of acceptance even in developed countries remains fairly low at about 37% (McKendrick, 2011). It is against this background that this study undertakes an assessment of cloud computing adoption.

Scholars and practitioners have researched and are still analyzing the factors that influence technology acceptance. Theories and models developed by scholars in this field have tended to focus on the factors that influence technology acceptance and have rarely weighed them. Most studies have tended to gauge the effect of each single variable rather than weighing and modeling it systematically. Technology Trade Theory (Triple-T or T3), the unified theoretical framework which this study proposes, is a comprehensive and more powerful in describing and predicting consumer adoption of technology and therefore goes a long way in bridging this gap.

Problem Statement

The technology acceptance model (TAM) is the most commonly used model for explaining technology adoption behavior, this notwithstanding the fact that it has been associated with fundamental weaknesses which blunt its robustness and predictive ability. Technological advances such as autonomic computing and virtualization have led to the emergence of cloud computing which promises significant benefits for businesses which adopt this technology, necessitating the need for a better way for understanding the technological adoption process in order to ensure that business organizations reap the benefits associated with cloud computing.

Although the emergence of cloud computing has attracted enormous interest in, very few studies have attempted to explain the acceptance of this technology using technology adoption models. Moreover, that previous technology adoption models evaluate the adoption process from a single perspective (Chuttur, 2009) necessitates the need for the adoption of cloud computing to be evaluated using a model in which multiplicity of perspectives is embedded, hence Triple-T model is proposed.

Significance of Research

The formulation and validation of the proposed Triple-T model offers an alternative to the earlier models, and its promise of a higher predictive ability assures of a remedy to the weaknesses extant in previous technology adoption models. …