First Advisor

William Manning

Date of Publication


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Systems Science: Business Administration


Systems Science: Business Administration




Organizational change, Electronic data processing personnel -- Effect of technological innovations on, Microcomputers



Physical Description

3, xvi, 190 leaves: ill. 28 cm.


Computer professionals have been agents of change in many organizations. In some cases the role inadvertently became theirs as they were the ones at the vanguard of implementing the new information processing technology in organizations. While in other cases they were the catalysts for change, to force new methods/procedures onto lethargic organizations. While introducing change on others in the organization and adapting to new technological changes themselves, the computer professionals have not really had to face a significant change in their status, power, or importance to the organization. The introduction of the personal computer has brought about significant change in the way the job of the computer professional is perceived by many in the business world. While this change is personally affecting the way they do their job, there has not been a noticeable attempt by those managing computer professionals to deal with the human emotions engendered by such a change. Part of the reason for this lack of attention may be due to the lack of a model as to how computer professionals react to change. Such a model would provide a system whereby it would be possible to recognize where efforts could be made to measure, predict, and modify situations so that a smooth transition can be made to the change. Toward this end a model was developed which presents a system as to how computer professionals react to change. This dissertation presents the model, surveys a population of computer professionals, and analyzes the model using data gathered from the population. The data was gathered in the form of a self administered survey which was given to computer professionals working for six investor owned electric and gas utilities in the Northwestern United states. They answered questions on a scale of from one to five as to their emotions and perceptions about the introduction of personal computers into their organizations. These questions spanned the timeframe as the organizations migrated from the early beginnings of personal computer introduction, to a situation where the use of personal computers was widespread in the company. In the case of three of the companies the personal computer had not yet achieved widespread use at the time of the survey. The data gathered from the computer professionals was statistically analyzed to see if relationships exist between the model and the data. Additionally, interesting demographic data was analyzed to see if certain other factors affected the computer professional's perception as to the impact of the personal computer on their quality of worklife.


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