Journal of Management Information Systems

Volume 9 Number 4 1993 pp. 121-144

Measuring the Information Systems Supervisor's Work-Unit Environment and Demonstrated Skill at Supervising

Ferratt, Thomas W, Short, Larry E, and Agarwal, Ritu

ABSTRACT: Research suggests that the management of information systems professionals makes a difference in the quality and quantity of systems produced. Although technological developments affecting the productivity of systems professionals are relatively easy to isolate, the effects of differences in management are harder to assess. This paper reports the results of a two-stage effort to develop, validate, and score an instrument for measuring differences in management. In the first stage an instrument and scoring procedures for measuring the work-unit environment were developed and shown to have acceptable reliability and validity. In the second stage the work-unit environment instrument and scoring procedures were adapted to yield a shorter instrument for measuring differences in demonstrated skill at supervising. Based on different assumptions about the desirability of mid-range work-unit environments, alternative scoring algorithms are used with responses to the ten-item survey to yield alternate indices of demonstrated skill at supervising. Although factor and reliability analyses support the reliability and validity of the instrument, the scoring algorithms require further research. In addition, the relationship between the work-unit environment and demonstrated skill at supervising constructs and other related constructs could also be a worthwhile area for further investigation.

Key words and phrases: productivity of information systems professionals, skill measurement, supervision of information function