Evolving with Notes: Organizational Change around Groupware Technology
This paper examines the use of a groupware technology--Lotus Development Corporation's Notes® --in the context of customer support to understand how the technology was used to enable organizational changes over time. Building on its successful implementation of the technology two years ago, the customer support department underwent a number of organizational changes that altered the nature and distribution of work, forms of collaboration, utilization and dissemination of knowledge, and coordination with internal and external units. These changes were enacted through a series of intended as well as opportunistic modifications to both the technology and the organization. The effectiveness of this change process suggests a strategy of implementing and using groupware technology that focuses first on enacting some initial planned organizational changes, and then builds on these to enact emergent changes in response to the opportunities and conditions occasioned by the planned changes. Because groupware technologies are largely open-ended and adaptable, this process of evolving organizationally with the technology over time may be a particularly useful way of implementing organizational change around groupware.
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