Limitations

As with any other research, the conclusions offered in this chapter should be interpreted in light of some necessary assumptions and boundary conditions that we had to impose to be able to reach some definite insights.

Notably, in order to be able to explain BPM culture, we needed to focus on one specific level of a group culture. While our research on the relation between BPM and culture revealed a framework that includes several cultural groups, such as national culture and work group culture, the subsequent research concentrated on organizational culture. This narrowed focus on culture was required to conceptualize the notion of BPM culture which had been identified as a facet of organizational culture that plays a crucial role in both the research field and the developed framework. In fact, an examination of the derived framework, involving a focus on additional group cultures, could have only revealed tentative, hypothetical results at the time because BPM culture, one of the core concepts of this model, had not been specified and conceptualized. On the basis of the operationalization of the BPM culture concept, future research can now empirically examine the framework, including a focus on specific group cultures such as work groups or nations.

Second, we have to stress that our work on culture has been influenced by our very own cultural background. In this research, it was assumed that BPM is a general scientific approach which comes along with specific values that are underlying this approach and which shape the concept of BPM culture. Since BPM originates from Western countries, the values underlying this scientific approach may be particularly characterized by Western cultures. Yet, it was not examined in this research how far the understanding of the management approach differs across cultures around the globe. In other words, this research abstracts from potentially varying notions of BPM culture that may be present in different contexts. In fact, the notion of BPM culture may not only differ across national cultures but also across company specific contexts like industry. For instance, it might be that in high-risk industry sectors (such as construction) BPM success is measured in terms of compliance achievements more so than in efficiency or effectiveness gains. In our ongoing research, we attempt to understand some of these contextual factors in more details.

Finally, we stress that typical research method limitations that relate to the way we executed our studies also apply. These include limitations regarding sample size, respondent bias or subjective interpretation bias of the data collected.

 
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