Promoting TAM in the public sector

TAM is an acronym for Technology Acceptance Model. It’s a theory proposed by Fred Davis in 1986 for information systems. It models how the user react to new technology. The model proposed that when new technologies are introduced to users, user’s decision, or reaction is influenced by a number of factors that determines when and how it will be used, specifically:

    (a) Perceived usefulness – the extent to which users believe that using the new system would improve their performance at jobs.

    (b) Perceived ease-of-use – this is the level to which a user thinks that using the new system would be free from any efforts.

This model has been used to support empirical evidence on the relationships that exist between system use, usefulness and ease of use. The model has been applied over the years in various ways of information systems.

However the theory has been criticized over the years for a number of reasons; predictive power, triviality, questionable heuristic value, lack of any practical value and more.

There are a number of ways to promote TAM in the public sector. First, TAM can be promoted in the public sector by making new systems add value and ease the work of users for them. In the Perceived usefulness TAM theory, new systems that ease the work of users tend to be more adoptable.

Secondly, users lean towards technology that requires less effort to use. The growth of systems over the years was appreciated due to the fact that they require less effort in its use. For example, comparing a typewriter to a computer system, typewriters are virtually extent which is caused by the introduction of computer systems that requires less or no effort in its use, making the new technology more acceptable.

Another way of promoting TAM in the public sector is by showing the practical use of the new system. No one wants to take up the risk of adopting a new technology that won’t pay off in the coming years, but a practical use of the new technology influence more the decision of adopting the new technology, often times in the right direction. In conclusion, promoting TAM in the public sector can be done in different ways, but the important ones have been highlighted above. The advertisement also creates awareness of the new technology, invariably promoting its acceptance. Although promoting a new technology is not an easy task, but it pays off later.

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