An investigation of factors causing management information system project failures in the banking industry in Kenya
The study of MIS failure in banking systems is an important process for understanding both a persisting complex phenomenon and discovering ways for its prevention. Core banking projects in Kenya, Liquidity and the presence of adequate financing opportunities have been theorized to be crucial elements in banks survival and to improve on their on-line services. The management of MIS projects is a challenging task with many projects failing to achieve their intended objectives. This study seeks to investigate factors causing management information system project failures in the banking industry in Kenya and determine whether there are major difference in MIS project failure between local banks and western owned banks. The research used a comparative case study research design and Heek's technique was used to draw difference determining difference in project success of the banks which is a relatively simple and quick to understand and put into practice. Four banks were used as case study in this study comprising local banks KCB and Equity and western banks comprising Barclays bank and Standard Chartered Bank where 20 respondents were drawn from each bank making the total number of respondents to be 80. The collected data was qualitative in nature and descriptive statistics was employed in the analysis. From the findings the study concludes that local banks were found to experience information systems project partial failure due to poor project planning, poor reliability, poor support from the management, inability to complete work assigned owing to insufficient staff and Lack of executive support. High MIS project turnover among others factors needs to be looked at as it points in one direction: toward high rates of IS failure in developing countries. If this is so, Heeks indicates that seeking to understand why MIS project fail is critical. The intention of this study was explain why so many MIS in Kenyan banks fail. The study also concludes that age of the staff, gender balance influence the success of MIS projects in banks. Western banks employees in IT projects were relatively younger, highly educated and observe gender balance becoming more successful over local banks that employed relatively older staff, less educated and fails to observe gender balance. Western banks were noted to adopt existing MIS systems that have succeeded in the countries of origin which have already been tested thereby explaining the high rate of success. On the other hand, local banks face the disadvantage of not having as much support from the vendors of the Core banking systems as opposed to western banks which by the high number of installations usually have high stakes in the software vendor management and subsequently receive a lot of technical support.