Towards understanding the dynamic tensions between creativity and control in an information technology financial services company.
Dallas, James John.
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This study explores the reasons behind why EasyPay, a financial services Information Technology company, has not been able to balance the need to innovate its service offering with the pressure to stabilise its service and maintain revenue growth. Despite its good financial performance, service delivery issues had hampered the company for a long period of time. Poor customer service continued to restrict growth and put the company's long-term survival at risk. The researcher believes that the understanding this research has provided will put management in a position to formulate a more effective strategy to take the company from its current reality to its future vision. There was an overwhelming amount of information available in the form of events, patterns, issues and opinions. This information had to be organised and understood. The theory was built from the ground up and derived directly from the evidence collected. The research was iterative in nature and, as such, yielded questions along the way, and this guided the review of the literature. There was first a need to develop a systemic appreciation of the dynamics of the situation before deciding on what strategic management plan to suggest that would balance the pressures on the business and satisfy customer needs. This study therefore focused on developing an appreciation of the situation. Systems thinking theory was used in developing this appreciation, as it provided a language for describing and understanding the forces and interrelationships that shaped the behaviour of the system in EasyPay. When the system had been grasped the researcher went back and revisited the events and patterns, and used the derived systemic model to explain more clearly what happened in the company. The researcher discusses the mental models that he became aware of, in the course of the study, that were in part responsible for the existence of the system in EasyPay. Finally the researcher suggests some recommended actions and highlights areas that he believes require attention.