Journal of Management Information Systems

Volume 26 Number 1 2009 pp. 155-195

The CMC Interactivity Model: How Interactivity Enhances Communication Quality and Process Satisfaction in Lean-Media Groups

Lowry, Paul Benjamin, Romano Jr, Nicholas C, Jenkins, Jeffrey L, and Guthrie, Randy W

ABSTRACT: Process satisfaction is one important determinant of work group collaborative system adoption, continuance, and performance. We explicate the computer-mediated communication (CMC) interactivity model (CMCIM) to explain and predict how interactivity enhances communication quality that results in increased process satisfaction in CMC-supported work groups. We operationalize this model in the challenging context of very large groups using extremely lean CMC. We tested it with a rigorous field experiment and analyzed the results with the latest structural equation modeling techniques. Interactivity and communication quality dramatically improved for very large groups using highly lean CMC (audience response systems) over face-to- face groups. Moreover, CMC groups had fewer negative status effects and higher process satisfaction than face-to-face groups. The practical applications of lean CMC rival theoretical applications in importance because lean CMC is relatively inexpensive and requires minimal training and support compared to other media. The results may aid large global work group continuance, satisfaction, and performance in systems, product and strategy development, and other processes in which status effects and communication issues regularly have negative influences on outcomes.

Key words and phrases: audience response systems, CMC interactivity model, collaboration, human-computer interaction, interactivity, large groups, ultra-lean interactive media, ultra-lean interactivity