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Article
Publication date: 18 April 2016

Minou Weijs-Perrée, Rianne Appel-Meulenbroek, Bauke De Vries and Georges Romme

The purpose of this paper is to analyze the objectives, tenants, spaces and services of different business center concepts and test whether the existing classifications in…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to analyze the objectives, tenants, spaces and services of different business center concepts and test whether the existing classifications in literature and in the real estate market draw on significantly different concepts.

Design/methodology/approach

After a literature review, data on business centers were collected with a questionnaire among owners/mangers of 139 business centers in the Netherlands. The existing business center concepts are examined whether these concepts are significantly different, using bivariate analyses.

Findings

The findings of this study give insight into the business center market, the existing business center concepts and (dis)similarities between the concepts. Although many dissimilarities were found between the business center concepts, like offered services, social spaces and contractual agreements, findings show that the four business center concepts can be offered in similar objects.

Originality/value

New ideas about working and the work environment have caused the business center market to become more differentiated. Some studies have attempted to classify the business center market into several categories or analyzed in detail one specific business center concept. However, these studies did not describe in detail the differences between the concepts. Also there is hardly any empirical research on this sector. This paper addresses gaps in previous research on business centers and demonstrates that there are significant (dis)similarities between the existing business center concepts.

Details

Property Management, vol. 34 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-7472

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Article
Publication date: 17 August 2018

Edda Tandi Lwoga and Wallace Chigona

This paper aims to assess the usage pattern of telecentres, how rural women frame telecentres and barriers that limit use of telecentres. Further, the study examined the…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to assess the usage pattern of telecentres, how rural women frame telecentres and barriers that limit use of telecentres. Further, the study examined the effects of demographic characteristics and location on telecentre usage.

Design/methodology/approach

The study used a sequential mixed research design in three rural districts surrounding telecentres: Kongwa, Sengerema and Kilosa districts. The study population comprised rural women who were users and non-users of telecentres. The study conducted six focus group discussions (FGDs) with 37 users and six FGDs with 36 non-users in the first phase of the study in 2014; questionnaires were administered to 90 users and 90 non-users in the second phase of the study in 2015.

Findings

The primary use of telecentres among users was to access internet (71.4 per cent, n = 60), followed by information and communication technology (ICT) training courses (63.1 per cent, n = 53) and secretarial purposes (63.1 per cent, n = 53). Rural women used internet for educational purposes, followed by news, information on health issues, job opportunities, social and entertainment issues. Rural women currently using internet were more likely to be better educated (ß = 1.926, p = 0.001) and have higher incomes (ß = 5.318, p = 0.021) at both bivariate and multivariate analysis. Users indicated that they faced the following barriers towards using telecentre: short duration of ICT training, frequent power outages, low speed of internet and few computers at the telecentres. Non-users were not using telecentres because of lack of ICT skills and language barriers.

Originality/value

This study provides empirical evidence to telecentres, libraries and other rural ICT initiatives to design rural ICT services that are gender-sensitive and demand-driven.

Details

Journal of Information, Communication and Ethics in Society, vol. 17 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1477-996X

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Article
Publication date: 1 August 2006

Ishak Ismail, Hasnah Haron, Daing Nasir Ibrahim and Salmi Mohd Isa

The purpose of this paper is to explore the relationship between audit service quality, client satisfaction and loyalty to the audit firms. SERVQUAL model was used to…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the relationship between audit service quality, client satisfaction and loyalty to the audit firms. SERVQUAL model was used to measure the perceptions and expectations of public listed companies on the services received from audit firms.

Design/methodology/approach

The five dimensions of SERVQUAL, i.e. reliability, assurance, tangibility, empathy and responsiveness was used to measure the service quality of audit firms. The research was conducted using primary data. Questionnaires were sent to 500 public listed companies listed in Bursa Saham Malaysia for year 2005.

Findings

The public listed companies were satisfied with the tangible dimension but were dissatisfied with the other four dimensions. The most dissatisfied dimension was empathy. Customer satisfaction was found to partially mediate the relationship of reliability and customer loyalty.

Research limitations/implications

The small sample size is a limitation of the study. Also, the study examined all services offered by audit firms. A larger sample size and focusing on a particular service would be better as the respondents would then be able to give a more focused answer. Also, the public listed companies were not analysed further into various industry types, size of firm and other corporate attributes to understand their different needs.

Practical implications

The study defines the attributes of quality services from the clients' perspective. Once the needs are more clearly known and understood, the audit firms will be in a better position to anticipate clients' requirement rather than to react to clients' dissatisfactions.

Originality/value

The paper uses a marketing model, SERVQUAL, to measure the service quality of audit firms.

Details

Managerial Auditing Journal, vol. 21 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0268-6902

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Article
Publication date: 11 February 2020

Edda Tandi Lwoga and Wallace Chigona

This study aims to assess the contribution of telecenters in expanding the capabilities of rural women to achieve their development outcomes in three rural districts in Tanzania.

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to assess the contribution of telecenters in expanding the capabilities of rural women to achieve their development outcomes in three rural districts in Tanzania.

Design/methodology/approach

The study conducted 12 focus group discussions with 37 rural women users and 36 rural women non-users of telecenters and semi-structured interviews with telecenter managers in the selected districts. The framework for the study is based on Sen’s capability approach.

Findings

The study noted that telecenters may enable rural women to build some capabilities (social, financial, human and political capabilities), and inhibit others, resulting in diverse development outcomes, based on the choices made and conversion factors. These conversion factors included institutional factors (inadequate computers, space and personnel, unreliable electrical power and slow internet connectivity) and individual factors (multiple responsibilities, status, low-level of education, language barrier, lack of information and communication technology (ICT) skills and technology efficacy and inability to afford ICT short courses). Other conversion factors (e.g. availability of affordable ICTs) enabled rural women to build their capabilities.

Originality/value

This is a comprehensive study that provides findings for rural telecenters to plan and allow rural women to expand their capabilities and achieve their development goals in Tanzania or other settings with similar conditions.

Details

Global Knowledge, Memory and Communication, vol. 69 no. 6/7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2514-9342

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Article
Publication date: 5 September 2018

Minou Weijs-Perrée, Rianne Appel-Meulenbroek, Theo Arentze and Georges Romme

Knowledge sharing is a process where individuals mutually exchange knowledge to create new knowledge. Understanding the knowledge-sharing process, during which…

Abstract

Purpose

Knowledge sharing is a process where individuals mutually exchange knowledge to create new knowledge. Understanding the knowledge-sharing process, during which organizations share spaces, facilities and services, is highly important for owners/managers who seek to optimize their business centres and to attract more innovative tenants. For users of business centres, it is interesting to know how, where and what type of knowledge is shared. However, there is hardly any research into sharing different types of knowledge in business centres. The purpose of this paper is to analyse the influence of personal and organizational characteristics on sharing different types of knowledge within and between organizations in business centres.

Design/methodology/approach

Data were collected using a questionnaire that was completed by 268 users of 53 business centres in The Netherlands. A seemingly unrelated regression analysis was used to simultaneously analyse the influence of personal and organizational characteristics on knowledge sharing in business centres.

Findings

The results show that public and private non-codified knowledge is more frequently shared with people from other organizations by those who more frequently use an event space, lounge space, canteen or consultancy services. Knowledge sharing with colleagues within organizations was influenced by the use of individual closed workspaces, meeting spaces and restaurant/canteen and gender.

Originality/value

The study suggests that owners and managers of business centres can optimize their business centres by offering specific facilities, services and workspaces to attract a specific group of tenants. In addition, organizations that want to enhance knowledge sharing with other organizations need to stimulate their employees to use shared facilities and services.

Details

Facilities, vol. 37 no. 1/2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-2772

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Article
Publication date: 1 January 2010

Lilai Xu

Business incubation is an important strategy to foster entrepreneurship and innovation; it has gained enormous popularity in China since the mid‐1990s. The purpose of this…

Abstract

Purpose

Business incubation is an important strategy to foster entrepreneurship and innovation; it has gained enormous popularity in China since the mid‐1990s. The purpose of this paper is to provide insights into the perceived value of business incubators from the perspective of start‐up ventures and draw implications for future incubation programmes in China.

Design/methodology/approach

The research was based on a sample of 61 incubator tenants from well‐established business incubators in Shanghai. A questionnaire including Likert‐type scales was developed to collect feedback/comments on incubator services as well as the perceived benefits of the incubation programme.

Findings

True to their names, business incubators in China have added practical value to start‐up ventures by providing wide‐ranging services and tangible/intangible benefits via the incubation programme. However, compared to their counterparts in North America and Europe, the Chinese incubators are still deficient in some important aspects; for example, counselling and mentoring services. To achieve better incubation outcomes, it is crucial that the incubator managers be competent, qualified and highly skilled.

Originality/value

Most of the previous studies on the effectiveness of business incubation in China were undertaken using a case‐based approach or focusing on the contributions of the business incubator to local economic development. The findings in such studies cannot be generalized. This paper provides empirical evidence to confirm the previous findings.

Details

Management Research Review, vol. 33 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2040-8269

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Article
Publication date: 1 June 1999

Dennis A. Swyt

Within the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), which administers the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award (MBNQA), a NIST technical division has…

Abstract

Within the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), which administers the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award (MBNQA), a NIST technical division has initiated a Baldrige‐based effort to increase the effectiveness of its research and services. The Precision Engineering Division is responsible for providing US industry with practical access to the international and national standards of length and for conducting a diverse program of R&D and services in measurements and standards. These measurements and standards relate to industrial control of dimensional tolerances on features of manufactured goods. The start‐up of this Baldrige‐based effort reported factors such as has involved: introductory training of all staff on the basic concepts of the MBNQA and team processes; training on leading and facilitating teams and site visits to other agencies and industry organizations carrying out TQM‐type programs. This paper reports on employee‐identified successes and failures, managerial lessons learned, and some potential next steps in the start‐up effort’s further development.

Details

The TQM Magazine, vol. 11 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0954-478X

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Article
Publication date: 1 April 1986

Joanna Eley

The concept of intelligent buildings has evolved as the use of information technology — electronic data handling — has grown. There are several strands to this concept…

Abstract

The concept of intelligent buildings has evolved as the use of information technology — electronic data handling — has grown. There are several strands to this concept Separating them will enable facilities managers to assess the relevance of the whole, and to make informed decisions on their organisation's need for intelligent buildings — and intelligence in buildings.

Details

Facilities, vol. 4 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-2772

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Article
Publication date: 6 September 2018

Rianne Appel-Meulenbroek, Mike van de Kar, Pauline van den Berg and Theo Arentze

Serviced offices are popular, offering many services and facilities to attract tenants. As research showed that most business centres occupy similar buildings, services

Abstract

Purpose

Serviced offices are popular, offering many services and facilities to attract tenants. As research showed that most business centres occupy similar buildings, services are important to differentiate. All kinds of people use them (from freelancers to employees of large corporates) and their characteristics are likely to influence how they value different services. This study aims to identify which services/facilities are perceived as most important and whether end-user characteristics explain differences between users regarding these preferences. Serviced office owners and operators can use the insights obtained from this study to differentiate their product offer from competitors and aim for specific tenant market segments.

Design/methodology/approach

Data were collected through a questionnaire among 137 end-users in 13 serviced offices in The Netherlands. With principal component analysis, 31 services and facilities could be reduced to six independent factors and four additional services. Multiple regression analysis was used to determine effects of user characteristics (employee demographics, job characteristics and reasons for using serviced offices) on perceived importance of each service/facility (factor).

Findings

Results showed that organisational characteristics had little effect on perceived importance of services and facilities. Especially the time spent at the office and the reasons for using it showed effects on importance of different services and facilities. Amenities like a gym and childcare were not deemed important by most of the respondents.

Originality/value

So far, research on office users focused largely on single-tenant offices and large corporates. Serviced offices have only been studied from the supply side until now.

Details

Facilities, vol. 37 no. 1/2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-2772

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Article
Publication date: 11 May 2010

Sharon Conley, Jewell Gould and Harriet Levine

Despite the critical role of support personnel in education, the literature about their supervision has been less than informative. In an effort to provide additional…

Abstract

Purpose

Despite the critical role of support personnel in education, the literature about their supervision has been less than informative. In an effort to provide additional guidance to school leaders seeking to improve the supervision of such personnel, the purpose of this paper is to examine and compare three distinct groups of support personnel: school custodians/janitors, school secretaries, and paraprofessionals in special education.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper begins with two analyses. One is that of the general importance of the role of support personnel in public schools in the USA. The other consists of a brief argument as to why the literature about the supervision of support personnel has not been overly informative. The paper proceeds with descriptions of three distinct support personnel groups.

Findings

The examination of three support personnel groups highlights the visibility of the school custodian/janitor, the multi‐dimensional responsibilities of the school secretary, and the background of the paraprofessional in special education.

Research limitations/implications

A comparison of three distinct groups of support personnel has implications for their training, compensation and scheduling, and work design and supervision.

Originality/value

The paper content offers an information‐rich and multi‐faceted view of support personnel in schools, with implications for their overall supervision and the importance of their contribution to the organization.

Details

Journal of Educational Administration, vol. 48 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0957-8234

Keywords

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