A Multidimensional Commitment Model of
Volitional Systems Adoption and Usage Behavior

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Published in the
Journal of Management Information Systems
Summer 2005, Vol. 22, No. 1, pp. 117-151.

Yogesh Malhotra* and Dennis Galletta**
* Syracuse University Whitman School of Management, yogesh(at)syr.edu
**University of Pittsburgh Katz Graduate School of Business, galletta(at)katz.pitt.edu

Abstract: In recent years, several organizations have implemented non-mandatory information and communication systems that escape the conventional behavioral logic of understanding acceptance and usage from a normative perspective of compliance with the beliefs of others. Because voluntary systems require users’ volitional behavior, researchers have traced recent implementation failures to a lack of user commitment. However, gaps in our understanding of volitional usage behavior and user commitment have made it difficult to advance theory, research, and practice on this issue. To validate a proposed research model, cross-sectional, between-subjects, and within-subjects field data were collected from 714 users at the time of initial adoption and after six months of extended use. The model explained between 44.1% and 58.5% of the variance in adoption and usage behavior based upon direct effects of user commitment. Findings suggest that user commitment plays a critical role in the volitional acceptance and usage of such systems. Affective commitment, i.e., internalization and identification based upon personal norms, exhibits a sustained positive influence on usage behavior. In contrast, continuance commitment, i.e., compliance based upon social norms, shows a sustained negative influence from initial adoption to extended use. Theory development based upon Kelman’s social influence framework offers new empirical insights about system users’ commitment and how it affects volitional usage behavior.

Keywords: information systems acceptance and use, system user commitment, volitional usage behavior, systems implementation, user commitment, Kelman’s social influence theory, compliance, identification, internalization, social norms, personal norms, cognitive processes, affective processes, psychological attachment, multidimensional commitment model.