Health care organizations are facing increasing challenges as they strive to keep pace with evolving service delivery and reimbursement models. In this context, the effective use of Information Technology (IT) is widely acknowledged as a critical factor for achieving the quadruple aim of health care: better outcomes, lower cost, improved patient experience, and improved clinician experience. Even so, health care organizations have struggled to develop effective working relationships between IT and business units and there remains a dearth of research on the impact that the quality of the relationship between IT and business employees has on organizational performance outcomes. Applying social capital theory, the purpose of this study was to investigate the extent to which the quality of the relationship between IT and non-IT employees is correlated with organizational performance outcomes in a hospital setting. Hypothesized relationships between the structural, cognitive, and relational dimensions of the social capital and intellectual capital were examined. Multi-level SEM path analysis was employed to analyze survey data from 143 IT Field Service workers who provide services in one of the 34 hospitals within a single health system in the western United States. Multivariate and ordinary least squares linear regression was used to investigate the relationship between intellectual capital (aggregated by hospital, N = 34) and extant data from four hospital performance metrics: hospital quality, employee productivity, patient length of stay, and patient satisfaction. A positive correlation was observed between structural and cognitive dimensions of social capital (Std. β = 0.550, p = 0.003), cognitive and relational dimensions of social capital (Std. β = 0.581, p = 0.001), and between the cognitive dimension of social capital and intellectual capital (Std. β = 0.643, p = 0.001). Intellectual capital was positively correlated with employee productivity (Std. β = 0.468, p = 0.005) and negatively correlated with patient length of stay (Std. β = -0.422, p = 0.032). These correlational results provide direction for future experimental research and offer guidance for health care IT leaders as they examine whether the development of structural and social capital between IT and non-IT employees has a casual impact on hospital performance.
Library of Congress Subject Headings
Dissertations (PhD) -- Global leadership and change; Social capital (Sociology); Hospitals -- Information technology; Health care teams
Date of Award
Graduate School of Education and Psychology
Seagraves, Michael David, "Application of social capital theory to examine the relationship between IT-business alignment and organizational performance outcomes in health care" (2019). Theses and Dissertations. 1031.