Date of Award

Spring 5-4-2014

Degree Type


Degree Name

Executive Doctorate in Business (EDB)



First Advisor

Dr. Michael J. Gallivan

Second Advisor

Dr. Dan C. Bello

Third Advisor

Dr. Bruce Behn


Small to Mid-size Enterprises (SMEs) typically are slow/late to adopt new technologies due to a conservative bias, cost factors and possible lack of knowledge. Implementation of a new Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system is a major, costly undertaking for a company of any size, especially SMEs, but there is the potential for huge paybacks touted by advantages afforded by the cloud. Cloud based ERP technology for SMEs is relatively new and poses a potential large risk-reward payoff. Given that these SMEs are currently functioning with their existing systems, why would they want to risk switching to "Bleeding Edge" Cloud ERP technology?

Prior ERP research has focused primarily on an ERP’s implementation success and the relevant critical success factors (CSFs) important throughout the various stages of an ERP’s lifecycle. The focus of these studies has been on post-selection variables and the success or failure of the ERP’s adoption or implementation. Inherent in these studies are firms who already selected ERP technology which provides no insight into any potential barriers that prevent selection.

ERP research in the area of SME cloud/SaaS ERP systems is nascent. This paper adds methodological, empirical and theoretical contributions to this existing stream of research about the motives and barriers in the selection of cloud ERP systems for SME’s. In particular, this research paper proposes to help bridge these gaps by operationalizing and testing Saeed, Juell-Skielse, and Uppström (2012)’s Unified Framework (UF) of the motives and barriers to the selection of cloud ERP systems. This current study uses Value Added Resellers (VARs) as subjects. They are arguably the most knowledgeable and in the best position to assess both the motives and more importantly barriers since there are in direct contact with the cloud ERP prospective purchasers.