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The role of information technology in purchasing function

Javier Alfonso Rodríguez-Escobar (Facultad de Ciencias Jurídicas y Económicas, Universidad Europea Miguel de Cervantes, Valladolid, Spain.)
Javier González-Benito (Administración y Economía de la Empresa, Universidad de Salamanca, Salamanca, Spain.)

Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing

ISSN: 0885-8624

Article publication date: 1 June 2015




This paper aims to analyze how information technology (IT) can help explain performance by the purchasing function. In addition to analyzing the direct effect and mediating role of purchasing practices in the relationship between IT and purchasing performance, as has been considered in previous research, this study investigates the possibility of a moderating effect of IT in the relationships between purchasing practices and purchasing performance.


The propositions are tested with data from 156 purchasing managers, collected through a survey of members of the Spanish Association of Professionals of Purchasing and Supply Management who work in industrial companies.


Although IT investments exert a positive effect on the purchasing function, the results show that this effect takes place through the implementation of purchasing practices that in turn improve the results of the purchasing function.


Instead of focusing on a single, specific effect of IT investment in the purchasing function, this paper considers three potential effects (direct, mediated and moderating). Thus, it provides a more comprehensive overview of the topic and a more complete elucidation of the actual effects.



Rodríguez-Escobar, J.A. and González-Benito, J. (2015), "The role of information technology in purchasing function", Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, Vol. 30 No. 5, pp. 498-510.



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