World Applied Sciences Journal 15 (5): 756-764, 2011ISSN 1818-4952© IDOSI Publications, 2011                Developing Cou...
World Appl. Sci. J., 15 (5): 756-764, 2011requirement for survival. The reach of the underlying                ways of kno...
World Appl. Sci. J., 15 (5): 756-764, 2011slower to adopt e-commerce than their developed                         C    E-C...
World Appl. Sci. J., 15 (5): 756-764, 2011marketing, online delivery status and tracking and                              ...
World Appl. Sci. J., 15 (5): 756-764, 2011C   Networked Society: To what extent are individuals                    C     A...
World Appl. Sci. J., 15 (5): 756-764, 2011                                      Technology           Database             ...
World Appl. Sci. J., 15 (5): 756-764, 2011Internet. Electronic commerce can give SME’s a better                    The con...
World Appl. Sci. J., 15 (5): 756-764, 2011of SMEs but also for government bodies, in developing                4.    MacGr...
World Appl. Sci. J., 15 (5): 756-764, 201118. Bidgoli, H., 2002. Electronic commerce: principles and           31. Chan, H...
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  1. 1. World Applied Sciences Journal 15 (5): 756-764, 2011ISSN 1818-4952© IDOSI Publications, 2011 Developing Countries and Electronic Commerce the Case of SMEs 1 Farhad Nejadirani, 2Masoud Behravesh and 3Reza Rasouli 1 Faculty of Social Science, Department of Management, Bonab Branch, Islamic Azad University, Bonab, Iran 2 Facultu of Social Science, Department of Management, Bonab Branch, Islamic Azad University, Bonab, Iran 3 Faculty of Social Science, Department of Management, Bonab Branch, Islamic Azad University, Bonab, Iran Abstract: The use of the Internet along with a range of other information and communications technologies (ICT) is transforming how business is done locally and globally. The effects are sometimes dramatic in developed countries. There are even a growing number of examples of the use of ICT for electronic commerce (E-Commerce) in developing countries. The effects to date, though, are small compared to what is expected to occur in the next decades. Forecasters all agree that how business is done will be profoundly affected by ICT; they do not agree on what the exact effects will be. Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SME’s) in developing countries need to be able to figure out how, when, if and where to use electronic commerce techniques to reap these gains. They face obstacles and constraints specific to the developing countries in which they operate such as higher costs to access the Internet and language barriers. For SMEs in developing countries E- Commerce poses the advantages of reduced information search costs and transactions cost. This research is meant to answer and study the following questions in regard to exceptional cases and for different situations, financial management, rules and regulations and some of problems and special cases: C Why Prepare SME’s in Developing Countries for E-Commerce C Putting SME E-Commerce Readiness in Context C E-Commerce Readiness: What SME’s Need to Know Key words: Electronic Commerce % Developing Countries % SME’s (Small and Medium-sized Enterprises). INTRODUCTION computers, from word processing to sophisticated application and systems have made considerable inroads Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) have into large, medium and even small organizations [3].grown in importance in the global economy during the last Recent research also found positive signs that SMEs cancouple of decades. Both theoretical and practical take advantage of electronic commerce (E-Commerce), aseconomic and business development literature a type of ICT, in helping their business to expand [4].acknowledges the key contributions of SMEs to the Despite the losses of so many businesses two years agodevelopment of both national and international growth of when the “dot-com bubble” burst- usually thought of aseconomy. This fact is not only measured by the number in early 2000-, no serious business analyst disagreesof SMEs which represents nearly 90% of the total that electronic commerce is steadily transforming howestablishments across the world, but also their significant business is done, hence changing the businessrole in creating employment opportunities [1]. Information environment globally. Businesses everywhere need toCommunication and Technology (ICT), on the other hand, understand if, when and how to use electronic found to play an important role for any organization [2]. Indeed, in some industries, businesses are learning nowThe use of ICT that range from mainframe to personal that this is no longer an option to consider, but aCorresponding Author: Masoud Behravesh, Economics Researcher, Faculty of Social Science, Department of Management, Bonab Branch, Islamic Azad University, Bonab, Iran. Cell : +989192227434. 756
  2. 2. World Appl. Sci. J., 15 (5): 756-764, 2011requirement for survival. The reach of the underlying ways of knowing". The adverse impact of the economicinformation and communication technologies (ICT) slowdown in South East Asia region, Indonesia and themaking E-Commerce commerce possible is also causing globalization of the world economy underscore the needunprecedented globalization of business. Businesses in for SMEs as the backbone of the national economy todeveloping countries will soon be affected as significantly become more resilient and competitive [8]. Thorp [9]as that elsewhere. Policymakers and advocates around believes that successful implementation of ICT offers thethe world are working to address this growing “digital prospect of substantial competitive advantage for largedivide.” SME’s are critical to the economies of all and SMEs alike. However, SMEs are not ‘little’ largecountries, including developing ones. They cannot be left business [10, 11]. In terms of ecommerce implementation,behind and many are already demonstrating their it requires one to give thorough attention and properentrepreneurial strength by grasping opportunities understanding towards SMEs characteristics beforeoffered by electronic commerce. Anecdotes abound about delineating further issues of technology adoption andcraftspeople selling their wares on websites, Indian strategies. The renowned characteristic of SMEs that arewomen providing transcription services via the Internet common in most countries is the lack of in-house ICTand even rural farmers checking product prices via the expertise and financial resources. Furthermore, in relationWeb. It is now time to more systematically offer the to ICT usage, previous research conducted by Heikkilaopportunities of electronic commerce to SME’s in et al. [12] found that there are three major differencesdeveloping countries, using appropriate technologies and between SMEs and large organizations:applications, so that the anecdotes no longer tell of theexceptions but illustrate an accelerating trend. This paper C SMEs tend to use computers more as tools and lessprovides support to the development professional as a communication medium;interested in doing so [5]. The objective of the paper is C The small number of stakeholders involved in anto provide useful guidance as they create ways to help SME means that there are likely to be fewer problemsSME’s prepare for and use electronic commerce - to be in terms of organizational politics;“E-Ready.” This is not an “E-Commerce primer.” There are C SMEs have considerably fewer resources available toplenty of those available, some even focused on implement ICT solutions.developing countries and the paper includes many usefulreferences to such documents. Instead, it focuses on what Much of the research also shows that the decisionSME’s need to learn; how to tailor this to the context in for ICT adoption in SMEs are more likely made by thewhich they operate and the many ways such a readiness owner [3, 13], which often have little concern towards theinitiative can be delivered. The writer of this article is importance of ICT strategy and planning within theirtrying to look attentively and clarified the dimensions of business [14]. Furthermore, Yap et al. [15] found in theirselected subject by use of 1descriptive - analytic1 research research that the management involvement is crucial to ITmethod. success within SMEs. E-commerce can be defined as any economic or business activity through Web storefrontsLiterature Review: There has been significant study on to enable the buying and selling of products and servicesE-Commerce, but majority of them have focused on and to facilitate the transaction of business and activitiesdeveloped countries such as the United States, Canada between and amongst individuals and organizations [16].and Western Europe [6], while according to predictions a In a wider definition, however, e-commerce is not limitedsignificant growth will happen in developing countries in to buying and selling products online. Along withthe first decade of the twenty first century. Ecommerce customers, an online business will also find its suppliers,arguably has a potential to add a higher value to accountants, payment services, government agencies andbusinesses and consumers in developing countries than competitors online. These online partners demandin developed countries [7] bowers claims that the most changes in the way they do business from production todominant characteristic of computers is their culturally consumption [17, 18]. Succinctly, e-commerce is a newmediating and transforming effect, but that computers are way of doing business [19, 16, 20]. Numerous studies intoviewed as a destructive form of Western colonization. the use of e-commerce in SMEs recently have been of an"Members of other cultures are aware that when they use exploratory and qualitative nature [21]. While there iscomputers they must adapt themselves to radically rapid growth and development of dot-com and the ‘newdifferent patterns of thought and deep culturally-bound economy’, SMEs in developing countries have been 757
  3. 3. World Appl. Sci. J., 15 (5): 756-764, 2011slower to adopt e-commerce than their developed C E-Commerce offers unmatched savings in terms ofcountries [22]. Moreover, there are several issues that transaction costshave been raised in recent SME literatures, which include: C The reduction of cost in advertising and promotion C Speed communication between buyer and sellerC Exploring the advantage and disadvantage of e- C Companies can shorten their traditional supply commerce in Thai SMEs [22]. chains, minimize transport obstacles and reduceC The importance of e-commerce infrastructure in C Delivery costs. facilitating the e-commerce adoption initiatives for C Physical limitations of time and space are removed. SMEs in developing countries [23, 24].C The use of e-commerce by manufacturing sector of Despite the attractive benefits that SMEs may obtain Italian SMEs [25]. from adopting E-Commerce into their business, SMEsC Adoption attributes that may affect e-commerce use possess significant problems in identifying the in Brunei SMEs [19]. appropriate application of E-Commerce and its strategyC Factors influencing e-commerce adoption decisions due to the lack of knowledge and planning in ICT. in small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Thailand Consequently, it is hardly surprising to witness that most [26]. of the SMEs’ owner/managers will finally develop theirC The use of e-commerce in Australian SMEs [27]. ICT strategy through a ‘trial and- error’ method. In addition, the business press and trade journals E-Readiness: APEC defines E-Readiness as the degree tohave also given coverage to many of the issues faced by which an economy or community is prepared toSMEs in moving into e-commerce [13, 28, 29]. However, participate in the digital economy [32]. A definition bythere are some issues that have received very little McConnell [33, 34] on E-Readiness is the capacity toattention in research to date, such as: participate in the global digital economy. McConnell’s definition of E-Readiness lacks descriptive details, but theC Framework that helps SMEs evaluates the strategic basic meaning points to the capacity to participate in use of e-commerce as well as guiding the adoption digital way of doing business. In the study of Hartman process. et al. [35], net readiness is measured as a company’sC Assessment of e-commerce application and post preparedness to exploit the enormous opportunities in the adoption experiences in different sectors of SMEs. E-Economy landscape. Grant [36] mentioned in his maturity model where a business is “ready” to implementImpact and Benefit of Strategic Use of E-Commerce in E-Business and ecommerce strategy, with the businessSme: One might question why the presence of E- plans and expectations clear, with no insurmountableCommerce has expanded very rapidly in recent years. The obstacles impeding progress and have identified anyanswer is simply because of the opportunities and needed partners or professional support. Another reportbenefits that are evident from the current implementation by Parker [37] described E-Readiness as “preparedness”by many organizations. The concept of strategic use E- to operate in an E-Business and E-Commerce marketplace.Commerce through the utilization of Internet software and The success of the Internet initiatives of a firm orservices also Endeavours to link Internet use with enterprise depends not only on its own effort to digitizeopportunities it offers to the firm [30]. It further recognizes its value chain, but also on the readiness of its customers,that the strategic potential Internet use allows exercising supplier and 10 trading partners to engage in electronicthe control over the bounds of relationships and interactions and transactions [38, 39]. Successful E-interfaces used in relationships between customers and Readiness practice requires readiness on the part of allthe business, which are also related to the firm’s players in the value chain and companies that adopted E-strategies. E-Commerce has offered a variety of potential Commerce or E-Business must invest in increasing theirbenefits both to SMEs and large business. Numerous trading partners’ readiness. E-Commerce applicationstudies claim their findings on the benefit and impact of E- includes the use of many different types of onlineCommerce. Those findings are summarized into the facilities to do business: order registration, electronicfollowing points [31, 16]: advertising, electronic billing system, electronic 758
  4. 4. World Appl. Sci. J., 15 (5): 756-764, 2011marketing, online delivery status and tracking and E-Governance: If the objective is E-Governance then thecustomer services support. E-Business applications also focus should be on Government Process Reengineeringinclude the use of many different types of online facilities and faster and transparent means of deliveringto communicate and coordinate: production planning, JIT government services to the citizens. Here E-Readinessmanagement, scheduling, outsourcing and other business equals computers, access and effective usage ofoperation process. computers - hardware and access are not enough for real E-Readiness, there must be extensive training programs,E-Readiness Objective locally relevant content and a local ICT sector and aE-Infrastructure: If the objective is on E-Infrastructure Business Process Reengineering along with. Thethen the focus should be on institutions, hardware and definition of Objective will help define the Stake holderssoftware Here E-Readiness equals computers and access - in the process Table 1 highlights the focal areas of studiescomputer hardware and network access are required to be done at internationally.e-ready and bridge the digital divide and government and On the basis of the objective and focus of study anyprivate initiatives should supply them. of the above models can be adapted or evolved based on local needs [40].E-Economy: If the objective is on E-Commerce then thefocus should be on ICT Business. Here E-Readiness Components of E-readiness / Choice of Indicators:equals computers, access and economy - computer Depending upon the objective for Assessment, a modelhardware and network access are required for E- is chosen and indicators under the same worked out forReadiness, but the market will solve this problem on its Assessment. The wide range of indicators can beown. classified in the following main groups:E-Society: If the objective is on the society then the focus C Network Access: What are the availability, cost andshould be complete population. Here E-Readiness quality of ICT networks, services and equipment?requires basic literacy, poverty, health and other social C Networked Learning: Does the educational systemissues to be addressed first - computers are useful, but integrate ICTs into its processes to improvenothing will make a society e-ready and bridge the digital learning? Are there technical training programs in thedivide until basic literacy, poverty and healthcare issues community that can train and prepare an ICTare addressed. workforce?Table 1: Study/ FocusStudy Focus1. APEC (Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation) E-Commerce Readiness2.CIDIF (Centre International pour le Development de I’Inforoute en Francis) Internet Service Market3. CSPP (Computer Systems Policy Project) Existing Infrastructure4. EIU (Economist Intelligence Unit) E-Business Readiness5. IDC Infrastructure6. KAM (World Bank, Knowledge Assessment Matrix) E-Economy7. MI (McConnell International) Infrastructure, Digital Economy, Education and government8. MN (Metric Net) E-Economy9. MQ (Mosaic Group) Internet10. NRI (CID, Harvard) Infrastructure, E-Society, Policies, Digital Economy, Education and Government11. CID (Center for International Development) Society12. CIDCM (University of Maryland) Qualitative Assessment based on past performance and current Internet pervasiveness13. ITU (International Telecommunication Union) Telecom14. Mosaic Economy Focus15. SIDA (Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency) Mainly SWOT analysis of a Nation16. USAID (US Agency for International Development) Access, Government, People 759
  5. 5. World Appl. Sci. J., 15 (5): 756-764, 2011C Networked Society: To what extent are individuals C Applications and services using information and communication technologies C Economy at work and in their personal lives? Are there C Enablers (policy, privacy, security, ubiquity). significant opportunities available for those with ICT skills? The Economist Intelligence Unit/Pyramid ResearchC Networked Economy: How are businesses and E-Readiness Rankings: The report measures six areas: governments using information and communication ( Figure 1) technologies to interact with the public and with each other? C Connectivity (30%)C Network Policy: To what extent does the policy C Business Environment (20%) environment promote or hinder the growth of ICT C E-Commerce Consumer and Business Adoption adoption and use? (20%) C Legal and regulatory Environment (15%)The Various Global Studies bring out the Following C Supporting e-Services (10%)Indicators for the Assessment: C Social and cultural Infrastructure (5%)APEC’s E-Commerce Readiness Assessment: Sixcategories are measured for "readiness for E-Commerce:" IDC Information Society Index: The study is based on four indicatorsC Basic infrastructure and technology (speed, pricing, C Computer infrastructure access, market competition, industry standards, C Information Infrastructure foreign investment), C Internet InfrastructureC Access to network services (bandwidth, industry C Social Infrastructure diversity, export controls, Credit card regulation),C Use of the Internet (use in business, government, KAM Knowledge Assessment Matrix: The study is based homes), on five indicators:C Promotion and facilitation (industry led standards),C Skills and human resources (ICT education, C Performance Indicator workforce) and C Economic Incentives and Institutional RegimesC Positioning for the digital economy (taxes and tariffs, C Education and Human Resources industry self-regulation, government regulations, C Innovative System consumer trust). C Information InfrastructureCSPP’s Readiness Guide for Living in the Networked CRM and SMEs in Developing Countries: CustomerWorld: CSPP’s guide caries measurements into five relationship management (CRM) with its current use ofcategories: technology often termed electronic CRM (e-CRM) is widely recognized as inevitable in modern business.C Infrastructure However, little or no research has been carried out onC Access e-CRM in developing countries where small to medium 5% 10% 30% 15% 20% 20% Connectivity Business Environment E-Commerce Consumer and Business Adoption Legal and regulatory Environment Supporting e-Services Social and cultural InfrastructureFigure 1: The Economist Intelligence Unit/E-Readiness rankings 760
  6. 6. World Appl. Sci. J., 15 (5): 756-764, 2011 Technology Database Trust Time Relationship Successful CRM Strategy Management Culture Infrastructure Education and Government Training Support CostFig. 2: Successful CRMenterprises (SMEs) abound and are the mainstay of such that improves a SME’s relationships with customers oreconomies. CRM which is an acronym for Customer suppliers. This includes cutely transacting businessRelationship Management is an approach for winning, electronically - orders, invoices, shipment documents – asretaining and servicing of customers. It incorporates all well as using ICT for marketing, market research, customerthe ways businesses try to build and sustain their service, finding potential customers and suppliers,customers. Within IT, it has to do with the technologies offering entirely new products and services and more.and systems that enable businesses manage sales, These changes may mean more international business,marketing and customer service in order to achieve long but not necessarily. It may be easier and make much morerunning customer relationships. CRM is at the core of any sense to focus on domestic markets. Gains from electroniccustomer focused business strategy and it also includes commerce can come from saving costs or increasingamong other things the people, processes and revenue. Changes can be made in the full range oftechnologies that are associated with marketing, sales and business processes: from marketing and sales, paymentservices. Long before the advent of technology, and product delivery through post-sale customer service.businesses have always recognized that the customer isthe soul of every business. Businesses try to have Why Focus on Small and Medium Enterprises?: Thispersonal relationship with their customers. Before the paper focuses on small and medium enterprises for twoindustrial revolution, the prevalent businesses were key reasons. First, they are important to economicsmall in size. Customers were known personally by development in developing countries. Per the Unitedthe proprietor and staff of these businesses. They Nations Conference on Trade and Development, SME’sremained loyal and returned to the shops or stores to account for 60 to 70 percent of all employment inmake repeated purchases, while the business staff developing countries. [42] Clearly, it is critical for suchservices the relationship through advice, discounts, credit businesses to be prepared for and take full advantage offacilities, etc. All those disappeared with the emergence of any benefits offered by electronic commerce. The secondlarge businesses which industrial revolution and the reason to focus on SME’s is that they are in a very goodurbanization of the society brought along. Although position to adapt to new technology; they may be able toprices of goods may have been lower, the relationship adapt faster than larger companies that can be slowed bybetween the customer and the business merchant became bureaucracy and stricter staffing hierarchies. E-Commercenameless and faceless. (Figure 2: Successful CRM) [41]. it may offer them comparatively more advantages to find new customers and suppliers especially in markets theyWhy Prepare SME’s in Developing Countries for have not easily been able to reach before - eitherE-Commerce: The paper uses a broad definition of internationally or regionally. Markets everywhere areelectronic commerce, including the use of ICT in any way globalizing partially due to the widespread use of the 761
  7. 7. World Appl. Sci. J., 15 (5): 756-764, 2011Internet. Electronic commerce can give SME’s a better The content may be grouped in various wayschance to compete in their markets and, indeed, in some depending on the intensity of the training effort and thecases, is or will soon become a competitive necessity for level of sophistication (both business-wise andsurvival. The potential benefits of electronic commerce to technically) of the SME’s targeted. In many cases, the“level the playing field” for SME’s -allowing them to topics may need to be complemented by some basic orcompete better- are critical for them to understand and additional technical training. What SME’s need to knowsort out. can be grouped into the information needed to answer nine categories or questions?Potential Gains from E-Commerce: Businesses all overthe world can benefit from electronic commerce C Why might I want to use E-Commerce? Whattechniques. They can use these techniques to: benefits might I achieve? C How do I determine if I can use electronic commerceC Find new customers – and partners and suppliers – to improve my business? domestically and internationally C In what part(s) of a business’s processes might E-C Serve current and new customers better, hence Commerce be incorporated? offering more value to them C What electronic commerce techniques should IC Improve the efficiency of their business processes consider and use?C Offer entirely new services and products – even start C What elements of my context affect how I can entirely new businesses. successfully use E-Commerce? C How can I figure out whether the benefits outweighPutting SME E-Commerce Readiness in Context: the costs?Before designing an approach to increasing E-Commerce C What will it take to succeed?readiness in a specific area, it is critical that the C How can I monitor results to know I am achieving thedevelopment professional consider the context for benefits I expect?the initiative along several dimensions. This context C What is my concrete action plan to achieve thesetting applies to the way E-Readiness is delivered results?(e.g. what technology and mode of delivery to use)as well as the content of the training and support The categories are in a logical order and anyprovided. Without carefully considering these two approach to E-Readiness probably needs to follow thisdimensions of context, an E-Commerce readiness initiative logic: e.g. beginning with motivation (“why?”), movingcan fail or fall short of its potential benefits. Below six through the other topics and including with a way toaspects of context are addressed: AID strategic measure results and how to set an action plan. Someobjectives; on-going, non- USAID initiatives; industry or training approaches (and the ones recommended in thissector considerations; rural vs. urban settings; paper) will go far beyond setting the action plan andinfrastructure constraints; and considerations for women- include on-going support for the SME’s who choose toowned SME’s. [43]. move forward with electronic commerce. Each category is discussed in a section below. We do not attempt to coverE-commerce Readiness: What Smes Need to Know?: the topics in great detail, but to provide guidance toThis section addresses the topics -- the content -- to development professional preparing for an E-Readinesscover in any E-Readiness initiative for SME’s in initiative for SME’s.developing countries. For convenience, the topics arepresented as if part of a curriculum for a classroom or web CONCLUSION-based course. They can of course be addressed in otherways, depending on the delivery method chosen. Chapter Electronic commerce (E-Commerce) adoption caseV describes several alternative delivery strategies. How studies in SMEs have been presented in this paper. Itthe topics are covered will vary by: shows an analysis of the importance of aligning business strategy with ecommerce adoption in SMEs. The study~ The context for the SME’s also underlines several factors and a step-by-step processC The approach chosen to building E-Readiness of adopting E-Commerce through a proposed framework. capacity for SME’s The results of this study are useful not only for managers 762
  8. 8. World Appl. Sci. J., 15 (5): 756-764, 2011of SMEs but also for government bodies, in developing 4. MacGregor, R.C., L. Vrazalic, S. Carlsson,countries such as Indonesia, that have economic reasons D. Bunker and M. Magnusson, 2002. The impact ofto be concerned about the development of SMEs. The business size and business type on small businessauthor believes that the results will also provide some investment in electronic commerce: a study ofinsights to ICT consultants – with SME customers – in Swedish small businesses. Australian J. Informationorder to improve their service and customer satisfaction. Systems. 9(2): 31- 39.No doubt E-Readiness assessments are meant to guide 5. Payne, E., 2004. E-Commerce Readiness for SMEs indevelopment efforts by providing benchmarks for Developing Countries: A Guide for Developmentcomparison and gauging progress, but there are a lot of Professionals. pp: 2.areas, which need to be kept in mind while going for such 6. Garcia and M. Murillo, 2004. Institution and thean assessment. They are: adoption of electronic commerce in Mexico. Electronic Commerce 8esearch J., 4: 201-219.C View assessments that have already been done in the 7. Annan, K., 2001. "Development without borders: area there are a number of prior reports that exists. globalization in the 21st century; Harvard Among E-Readiness projects, greater coordination International Review. 23(2): 24. and foresight is needed to avoid duplication. 8. Kartiwi, M., 2006. Case Studies of E-CommerceC Whenever an E-Readiness assessment is carried out Adoption in Indonesian SMEs: THE Evaluation of it should be ensured that the results are publicly Strategic use. Australasian J. Information Systems. available. The agency or organization that 14(1): 69-80. commissions the assessment should ensure that the 9. Thorp, J., 1998. The information paradox: realizing the results are circulated for wide use-too often this step business benefits of information technology. McGraw-Hill Ryerson. Toronto. has been missed 10. Culkin, N. and D. Smith, 2000. An emotionalC Reflect the views of all stakeholders in the E- business: A guide to understanding the innovations Readiness process and throughout implementation. of small business decision takers. Qualitative MarketC Use assessment results effectively to develop an e- Research: An International J., 3(3): 145-157. strategy that addresses how exactly E-Readiness will 11. Dandridge, T.C., 1979. Children are not little be improved and ICT used to benefit the country. grownups: small business needs its ownC The actions plans should be so made that they are organizational theory. J. Small Business Manage., realistic. The plan should comprise small achievable pp: 53-57. steps that deliver sustainable, scalable and replicable 12. Heikkila, J., T. Saarinen and M. Saaksjarvi, 1991. results. This is the best approach to narrowing the Success of software packages in small business: An digital divide and ensuring that the valuable exploratory study. European J. Information Systems. resources used to measure E-Readiness are not 1(3): 159-169. wasted. 13. Matlay, H. and M. Addis, 2003. Adoption of ICT and E-Commerce in small businesses: an HEI-based REFERENCES consultancy perspective. J. Small Business and Enterprise Develop., 10(3): 321-335.1. Hall, C., 2002. Profile of SMEs and SME issues 1990- 14. Beckett, H., 2003. Half of SMEs have no IT strategy. 2000. Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation. Singapore. Computer Weekly. 1: 34.2. Kai-Uwe Brock, J., 2000. Information and 15. Yap, C.S., C.P.P. Soh and K.S. Raman, 1992. communication technology in the small firm. In International systems success factors in small Enterprise and small business: principles, practices business. International J. Management Sci., and policy. (Eds, Carter, S. and Jones-Evans, D.). 5(6): 597-609. Prentice Hall. Singapore. pp: 385-408. 16. Schneider, G.P., 2002. Electronic commerce. Course3. Doukidis, G.I., P. Lybereas and R.D. Galliers, 1996. Technology. Australia. Information systems planning in small business: A 17. Alter, S., 2002. Information systems: foundation of stages of growth analyses. The J. Systems and e-business. Prentice Hall. Upper Saddle River, NJ; Software. 33(2): 189. [Great Britain]. 763
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