SWOT of social networking sites for group work in government organizations: An exploratory Delphi study from IT managers' perspective

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Abstract

Purpose: This paper aims to assess information technology (IT) managers' perception of the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (SWOT) of using social networking sites (SNS) for group work at government organizations. According to the research, SNS provide considerable potential and can be a valuable technology for group work in government, public and/or non-profit organizations. Design/methodology/approach: This study adopted a Delphi technique to assess the SWOT from IT managers in government organizations in Oman, a developing Middle Eastern country. One of the main roles of IT managers is to develop a short-term and long-term IT strategy, and identify opportunities in new technologies. SWOT analysis is a very useful tool to strategically analyze and understand an organization's current position in any IT deployment. As an exploratory study, Delphi technique is utilized as it produces the most reliable consensus of a group of experts. Data was collected through a web-based questionnaire. Findings: The results suggest that there are more strengths than weaknesses and more opportunities than threats. However, some weaknesses and risks are critical as they relate to security and privacy controls and breaches. The study illustrates IT managers' perception about the use of SNS in government organizations. Originality/value: For government organizations, prior research was mainly on the use of SNS to improve communication between government organizations and citizens. Not much is known about organizations' use of public technologies for a challenging process such as group collaboration. Results can be utilized by researchers and practitioners to improve SNS use for group work and to raise organizations' and individuals' awareness about implementing some controls that eliminate the critical threats. Results also can be utilized by IT policy and strategy makers in Oman and government organizations to develop overall national policy and guidelines for the use of SNS by government organizations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)121-139
Number of pages19
JournalVINE
Volume44
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014

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Keywords

  • Collaboration
  • Collaborative technologies
  • Delphi
  • Government-university-industry
  • Group work
  • Knowledge exchange; Government organizations
  • Social networking sites
  • SWOT
  • Systems evaluation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science Applications
  • Library and Information Sciences

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