Towards a framework for benchmarking ICT practice, competence and performance in small firms

David Wainwright (School of Informatics, Northumbria University, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK)
Gill Green (School of Informatics, Northumbria University, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK)
Ed Mitchell (Newcastle Business School, Northumbria University, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK)
David Yarrow (The Learning Alliance, NHS, Middlesbrough, UK)

Performance Measurement and Metrics

ISSN: 1467-8047

Publication date: 1 April 2005

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to provide a review and critique of the benchmarking literature with respect to information and communication technology (ICT) adoption and usage within small firms. This is used as the basis for developing a competence based model contingency framework to be used for comparing practice and performance with respect to ICT within small firms.

Design/methodology/approach

A theoretical approach is proposed whereby the key metrics and questions related to the development of an ICT benchmarking framework are derived from recent empirical research reported in the literature.

Findings

The main findings indicate a paucity of empirical research with respect to benchmarking ICT and also underdeveloped theory in terms of IT adoption in small firms. The ICT competence and capability approach is proposed as a viable research avenue for investigating IT performance within small firms.

Research limitations/implications

Limitations of this research are related to its current phase as work in progress. Testing of the theoretical framework and its development within the context of comparing ICT performance across small firms has yet to be carried out.

Practical implications

Practical implications of the research are very high as there could be a direct link between adoption and use of the benchmarking tool and improved ICT performance.

Originality/value

The development of an ICT benchmarking framework and tool that is directly focused on improving small firm performance – linked to a human and organisational competence approach as opposed to only measuring technological capability.

Keywords

Citation

Wainwright, D., Green, G., Mitchell, E. and Yarrow, D. (2005), "Towards a framework for benchmarking ICT practice, competence and performance in small firms", Performance Measurement and Metrics, Vol. 6 No. 1, pp. 39-52. https://doi.org/10.1108/14678040510588580

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Publisher

:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2005, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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