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Article
Publication date: 1 June 2003

Paul Jones, Paul Beynon‐Davies and Elizabeth Muir

The development of Ecommerce within Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in Wales is restricted by a number of barriers. Various projects initiated by government and…

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1808

Abstract

The development of Ecommerce within Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in Wales is restricted by a number of barriers. Various projects initiated by government and academic bodies exist to assist SMEs overcome these barriers. However, whether these projects represent the needs of SMEs is debatable. The opportunity for SMEs to exploit information communication technology has increased due to the improved affordability and sophistication of computing equipment, along with the development and utilisation of the Internet. This progress has seen the emergence of Ebusiness and Ecommerce, whereby SMEs can operate, communicate and trade in global markets. Recent surveys by academia, government and trade bodies have identified Wales as the worst performing region for Ebusiness in the UK with sceptical attitudes towards its increased adoption. This paper reports on a quantitative study investigating Ebusiness utilisation within SMEs in Wales. Specifically this paper focuses on the key barriers influencing the adoption of Ebusiness within SMEs in Wales. The survey of the Cardiff Chamber of Commerce (CCC) membership was undertaken in 2001. The CCC is a trade body of approximately 1000 SMEs encompassing a geographical area covering Cardiff, Bridgend, Newport and the Valleys areas. The postal survey and telephone follow up achieved a response rate of 100 SME classified enterprises, a response rate of approximately 10%. Academic research has identified these barriers as deficiencies in financial resources, time, information and skills; concerns over security, legal issues and competition and doubts over the applicability of Ebusiness to their business practices and cultural and infrastructure issues. These barriers are a major influence as to how Ebusiness will develop within SMEs and this paper identifies the significance of each factor in constraining growth. The paper concludes by investigating the assistance for SMEs from academia, government and trade to develop Ebusiness activities and questioning whether these are representative and effective mechanisms for this sector. This paper contributes to knowledge by appraising and contrasting existing barriers to Ebusiness literature and comparing it with the relevant SOGM literature. Secondly it classifies barriers in two ways by type and time of occurrence. Finally the paper recognises that the support mechanisms for Ebusiness within SMEs remain unproven and require further investigation to verify their effectiveness.

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Journal of Systems and Information Technology, vol. 7 no. 1/2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1328-7265

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Article
Publication date: 2 February 2010

Paul Beynon‐Davies

The purpose of this paper is to describe and explain the case of a major knowledge transfer project conducted over seven years within a region of the UK.

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1728

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to describe and explain the case of a major knowledge transfer project conducted over seven years within a region of the UK.

Design/approach

As part of this project a large survey is conducted on an annual basis which aims to track eBusiness adoption amongst small and medium‐sized enterprises (SMEs) in the region and the effects of such adoption upon regional development.

Findings

The paper presents findings from this longitudinal study and discusses these findings in terms of conceptions of eBusiness and the importance of developing more sophisticated instruments for assessing eBusiness maturity amongst SMEs. From the research there is clear evidence of the role of eBusiness adoption as a driver of regional development. The benefits from the initial Opportunity Wales programme are still materializing several years after the completion of the first three years of the seven year project.

Research limitations/implications

This is a study of one region in Europe. Further regional cases are required to support the findings.

Practical implications

The findings should help regional planners and national governments assess the value of eBusiness initiatives.

Originality/value

This paper describes the case of a programme funded by the European Union involved with the transfer of eBusiness knowledge to SMEs conducted over the period April 2001 to September 2007 within a major region of the UK. The scope of the research project and its longitudinal nature make the study original.

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Journal of Systems and Information Technology, vol. 12 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1328-7265

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Article
Publication date: 1 July 2006

Graham Winch and Philip Joyce

The purpose of this paper is to explore the dynamic nature in building and losing trust in business to consumer (B2C) eBusiness in an effort to better understand the…

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5530

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the dynamic nature in building and losing trust in business to consumer (B2C) eBusiness in an effort to better understand the casual nature of trust.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper uses system dynamics as a lens to interpret and understand the dynamic nature of building and losing trust in B2C eBusiness and reflect the structure of the trust building systems.

Findings

This paper provides a four element model and then suggests the cycle of management actions the company must consider if potential customers progressing to purchases is unsatisfactory.

Research limitations/implications

This paper provides a new insight into the dynamic nature trust in a B2C eBusiness. However, the intention of this paper is not to present yet another model, but to suggest how to move from the information and knowledge those models provide into a better understanding of the problem of trust in B2C. Future work will involve the validating of this model in practical situations, the main validation metric being the extent to which managers believe that working with it improves their understanding of the dynamics of building and maintaining trust.

Originality/value

This paper will provide a new insight into the development of B2C eBusiness for practitioners when considering possible strategy formulations for developing and understanding consumer trust in B2C eBusiness.

Details

International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, vol. 34 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-0552

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Article
Publication date: 18 April 2008

Alan Smart

The purpose of this study is to examine how four large organisations have approached the implementation of new eBusiness mechanisms: namely online order processing…

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9739

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to examine how four large organisations have approached the implementation of new eBusiness mechanisms: namely online order processing, eProcurement, reverse auctions, and a private exchange. The objectives are to establish whether supply chain integration is an identified goal for the firms involved and to evaluate the extent of integration achieved through these projects.

Design/methodology/approach

A case study approach is used, with four separate cases being examined, leading to cross‐case analysis and conclusions. The primary form of data collection was interviews with managers participating in the implementations. In order to measure the degree of supply chain integration pertaining in the examples, two frameworks from the literature are used.

Findings

In three of the cases it is established that there is very little, or nil integration at supply chain level and only in one case is there evidence of a supply chain perspective contributing to the project. Three of the firms did not consider the supply chain implications of implementing their eBusiness applications.

Research limitations/implications

The article builds on previous studies and illustrates the problems of achieving integration in the supply chain. Further research is needed to establish common attributes relating to supply chain integration.

Practical implications

Three of the projects examined here were based predominantly on a business case for the implementing firm only. Firms need to be aware that IT projects by their trading partners may have supply chain cost implications for their own business.

Originality/value

Whilst much of the literature propounds the need for integration, leading to extension of the supply chain concept, firms are pursuing IT implementations which are premised solely on internal benefits. The research illustrates that, if the new eBusiness mechanisms are to support wider supply chain goals, then the focal firms involved must take a more holistic view of how and why such solutions are implemented.

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Journal of Enterprise Information Management, vol. 21 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-0398

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Article
Publication date: 1 January 2003

Panos Louvieris, Jetske Van Westering and John Driver

E‐Business channels are presenting novel opportunities for small vineyards to target new online market segments, to communicate directly with the customer and side‐step…

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1166

Abstract

E‐Business channels are presenting novel opportunities for small vineyards to target new online market segments, to communicate directly with the customer and side‐step the main wine distributors who have traditionally blocked access to substantially wider markets. In the UK, where the majority of wine producers is heavily reliant on direct sales, understanding the role that eBusiness channels can play in the buyer behaviour process could be critical for building effective customer relationships and sales. This paper investigates how competitive advantage can be achieved through B2C channels.

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International Journal of Wine Marketing, vol. 15 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0954-7541

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Article
Publication date: 1 December 2004

Panos Louvieris and Harmen Oppewal

The role of channels and their management in the eBusiness era is becoming increasingly important to customer relationship management. Traditional use of the application…

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3581

Abstract

The role of channels and their management in the eBusiness era is becoming increasingly important to customer relationship management. Traditional use of the application portfolio approach has been concerned with providing an appropriate basis for making investment decisions about IT applications for the firm. This paper argues that there is a gap between the established IS portfolio application theory and the requirements to support management investment decisions about eBusiness applications; Therefore, the paper proposes a channel benefits portfolio (CBP) approach to inform managers' channel investment decisions concerning business‐to‐customer channel interface. The suggested approach provides a conceptual framework and means to facilitate the alignment of the firm's portfolio with their customers' portfolio. The paper reports exploratory findings regarding customer channel preference and customer channel choice behaviour in the information search and purchasing stages during the customer decision‐making process on the basis of the CBP.

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Qualitative Market Research: An International Journal, vol. 7 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1352-2752

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Article
Publication date: 1 September 2005

Alan Smart

Since the privatization of UK utilities, few studies have examined supply chain management (SCM) in the sector. This paper aims to investigate the state of development of…

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3507

Abstract

Purpose

Since the privatization of UK utilities, few studies have examined supply chain management (SCM) in the sector. This paper aims to investigate the state of development of the SCM concept and the role of the emerging internet‐based electronic marketplaces in supporting this.

Design/methodology/approach

Using a case study method, interviews were conducted with managers in seven UK electricity and water utilities. Areas explored are the firms' supply chain priorities, how eMarketplaces can support their supply chain goals and the barriers to adoption of eBusiness solutions.

Findings

The research reveals a strong orientation in both the electricity and water industry firms towards controlling cost inputs. Consequently, their focus is on managing procurement as the primary supply chain activity. The key barriers to eBusiness adoption identified are the problem of providing genuine benefits to suppliers, and the technical difficulties of marketplace implementation.

Research limitations/implications

This is an exploratory study of the domain and further work in this area needs to focus on how utilities will develop their supply chain competences and how eBusiness solutions can support them.

Originality/value

The research concludes that operators of electronic marketplaces have not yet delivered a convincing case for wider participation in management of the supply chain online. A stronger SCM orientation will need to emerge in utility firms before that can occur.

Details

Supply Chain Management: An International Journal, vol. 10 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1359-8546

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Article
Publication date: 1 October 2000

Russell Collins

Highlights eBusiness‐to‐business (eB2B), which comprises 84 per cent of online revenue – strongest of all in the financial sector. Profiles the various companies involved…

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16356

Abstract

Highlights eBusiness‐to‐business (eB2B), which comprises 84 per cent of online revenue – strongest of all in the financial sector. Profiles the various companies involved – such as Westpac and Citicommerce, Chase, American Express, Cybercapital and Epoch Partners. Espouses that there is more than one way to succeed in this e‐area. Concludes that eB2B will be at the foundations of the new economy and that the new market leaders will, industry‐wide, take up the challenge.

Details

Balance Sheet, vol. 8 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0965-7967

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Article
Publication date: 8 April 2014

Lily Wong, Arthur Tatnall and Stephen Burgess

The move towards “blended learning”, consisting of a combination of online and face-to-face teaching, continues to gain pace in universities around the world. It is…

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5072

Abstract

Purpose

The move towards “blended learning”, consisting of a combination of online and face-to-face teaching, continues to gain pace in universities around the world. It is important, however, to question the quality of this learning. The OECD has made use of a model of “Readiness, Intensity and Impact” for investigating the adoption and use of eBusiness technologies. The purpose of this paper is to propose a framework, based on this model and adapted for blended learning, to assess the readiness, intensity of adoption and impact on blended learning offerings. The framework is tested via a description of how one university has adopted and used blended learning, and investigates the quality of the learning from this approach.

Design/methodology/approach

The framework is tested via a case study involving the assessment of a blended learning approach to the delivery of a first-year undergraduate accounting unit at Victoria University, Australia. Various approaches to delivery are assessed over a two-year period. The results are drawn from a survey specifically designed to identify students’ attitudes towards blended learning.

Findings

Despite having three new online options readily available for students to access, there was strong support for face-to-face delivery methods. In relation to the framework, the assessment suggested that certain aspects of the university's blended learning approach could be investigated further (particularly student readiness for different blended learning options and an overall assessment of the impact of a blended approach), to provide a more holistic view of the readiness to adopt and impact of the blended learning offerings.

Originality/value

The value of this contribution lies in the development of a unique framework to assess the impact of blended learning approaches from the viewpoint of student readiness and intensity of separate delivery approaches – whilst maintaining the need to evaluate the effectiveness of blended learning as an overall package.

Details

Education + Training, vol. 56 no. 2/3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0040-0912

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Article
Publication date: 1 August 2003

Tim Dixon, Andrew Marston, Bob Thompson and Ben Elder

This paper is based on major survey of City of London occupiers conducted in the spring and summer of 2002 by The College of Estate Management, Reading. The aim of the…

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1911

Abstract

This paper is based on major survey of City of London occupiers conducted in the spring and summer of 2002 by The College of Estate Management, Reading. The aim of the research was to examine how eBusiness was driving process change amongst City office occupiers, and how this might change locational and space requirements in the future. This research shows how important information and communications technology (ICT) is becoming in driving process change for City office occupiers. However, ICT must be considered alongside forces for dispersal (for example, transport problems) and agglomeration (for example, face‐to‐face contact), which are creating a potent mix of factors driving businesses in the City. Changes in office densities, created by ICT and other drivers, have important implications for future office space projections in the City. The research shows that caution should be attached to the current office projections in the City provided in the Lord Mayor’s London Plan, and the results also have implications for continued investment in City offices. It is dangerous to over‐simplify density changes caused by ICT and other factors.

Details

Journal of Property Investment & Finance, vol. 21 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-578X

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