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Understanding Top Management Involvement in SDLC Phases

Dr. Asaad Alzayed, Dr. Abdulwahed Khalfan


One of the most essential factors in the success of system implementation has been recognized as top management support and involvement. Few research, however, have addressed the question of what sort of engagement is necessary through the various stages of the System Development Life Cycle (SDLC). Given the many challenges to top management involvement and support in the various SDLC phases. The objective of this research was twofold. First, to examine the relationship between top management support and the phases of SDLC in order to give guidance for top management practices to ensure the success of information system projects. Second, because top management support is critical to project success, this study sought to investigate approaches of motivating top management to participate in the SDLC as well as the barriers that hinder them from doing so. This study investigates the type of involvement and support of top management in various phases of system implementation, which will help us in understanding the support mechanism from top management in various SDLC stages. To achieve this goal, the authors performed a qualitative study in five different firms in Kuwait, interviewing top management, project management, system analysts, and IT managers. The research gave criteria for top management engagement and determined that top management should be involved in most of the SDLC phases, primarily in the planning and implementation phases. Through involvement, top management will obtain an insight on IS implementation and resource needs, as well as a knowledge of the need for organizational commitment to the IS project. They will be able to make the right decisions and engage with the implementation team more effectively.


TM Involvement, SDLC, TM Support, TM Motivation, TM Involvement Barriers

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