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Article
Publication date: 8 June 2018

Sunday Chinedu Eze and Vera Chinwedu Chinedu-Eze

The purpose of this paper is to examine how small and medium enterprises (SMEs) are involved in emerging information and communication technology (EICT) adoption by…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine how small and medium enterprises (SMEs) are involved in emerging information and communication technology (EICT) adoption by concentrating on the adoption process and the role played by various actors in the process. Information and communication technology (ICT) adoption research, especially in SMEs, has moved from a simple adopters’ participation process to involving diverse actors that continually interact and influence the process. SMEs need to constantly interact with various human and non-human actors to keep up with the EICT adoption. However, this has proved difficult.

Design/methodology/approach

This study adopted a qualitative method to examine the dynamic process of EICT adoption in service SMEs in the UK, and deployed both unstructured and semi-structured interviews in two separate rounds with 26 participants drawn from Crunch Online Database and Luton Business Directory. The participants include managers, customers, government agencies, SMEs consultants and information technology (IT) vendors, with the help of purposeful random sampling.

Findings

The study develops a framework informed by actor network theory (ANT) concepts and found that using ANT to examine the process of adoption helps to unveil the recursive nature of the process and the roles of actors which vary from one stage to another. The finding reveals that adoption of EICT is not straightforward; rather, it is evolutionary and dynamic, and small business managers’ play an important role in the process amidst other actors influence. The framework supports businesses of all types. Although ICT applications are influenced by diverse actors including IT experts, customers and vendors, the decision of SME managers regularly shape the values and beliefs of other actors if adequate information are conveyed by the numerous actors. Therefore, adoption of EICT is embraced faster by organizations, especially small businesses, if diverse actors are committed in conveying the right information to the key actors, thereby helping them to make adequate decision, and streamline their business processes.

Research limitations/implications

This study is limited by its focus and other factors. Studying the opinions of small service UK SMEs limits the power of generalizing the identified causal relationships; therefore, extended measures are required on accounts of environmental, cultural, geographical and sectorial differences. While some errors seemed unavoidable when measures appear subjective and prone to common error biases, the study advised on recognizing the overriding influence of the roles at each stage of the adoption process to be proactive in committing resources.

Originality/value

This work is of value to practitioners and academics, as it provides further insight into ICT adoption framework by showing how the diverse actors guarantee EICT adoption in small service(s) businesses. This is relevant given that SMEs have limited knowledge of new ICT and understanding diverse actors and their roles in the adoption process would enhance their knowledge of the analysts in the context of new technology adoption and to cope with EICT continually amidst of the roles of actors in the adoption process. The framework serves as an analytical instrument in explaining ICT adoption process and its outcomes characterized by conflicting views.

Details

The Bottom Line, vol. 31 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0888-045X

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Article
Publication date: 25 February 2014

Sunday Chinedu Eze, Yanqing Duan and Hsin Chen

This paper aims to advance information and communication technologies (ICT) adoption research and practice by examining and understanding the emerging ICT adoption in…

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1955

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to advance information and communication technologies (ICT) adoption research and practice by examining and understanding the emerging ICT adoption in small and medium enterprises (SMEs) from a dynamic process perspective using actor-network theory (ANT).

Design/methodology/approach

This study employs a qualitative approach to investigate how services SMEs are constantly engaging in ICT adoption for improving business performance. Two rounds of interviews were conducted with 26 interviewees. Data collected from the unstructured and semi-structured interviews were analysed to understand the dynamic adoption process, actors involved and their interactions.

Findings

The findings reveal the recursive and dynamic nature of the emerging ICT adoption process and the constant interactions and negotiations of various actors. Underpinned by the key concepts of ANT and validated by the empirical data, a framework is developed to depict the stages of dynamic process of emerging ICT adoption, the actors involved and the associated key activities.

Research limitations/implications

Qualitative research is interpretive in nature and the size of the sample used is limited. These limitations require caution for the generalization of the findings. The framework can be further validated across a wider population using mixed methods combining qualitative and quantitative approaches.

Practical implications

Emerging ICT adoption has moved from a simple adopters’ participation process to involving various actors that constantly interact and influence the process. SMEs manager can be influenced by and influence the technology advancement. As a result, SMEs need constantly interact with various human and non-human actors to keep up with the new ICT development and benefit from the emerging opportunities.

Originality/value

The research focuses on the emerging ICT adoption in SMEs from the dynamic process perspective using ANT. It advances ICT adoption research and practice by developing a framework to depict the dynamic and interactive nature of ICT adoption process, and the actors involved and their interactions in the adoption process.

Details

Information Technology & People, vol. 27 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0959-3845

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Article
Publication date: 14 June 2019

Sunday C. Eze, Sulaimon Olatunji, Vera Chinwendu Chinedu-Eze, Adenike O. Bello, Adebanji Ayeni and Fred Peter

Most studies in information behaviour have focussed on information behaviour aspects such as environmental uncertainty, scanning behaviour of top management executives…

Abstract

Purpose

Most studies in information behaviour have focussed on information behaviour aspects such as environmental uncertainty, scanning behaviour of top management executives, student and women information behaviour, information source and credibility, while little is known about the information behaviour of small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) when the need for emerging information and communication technology (EICT) adoption decision-making arises. This paper, therefore, aims to explore the major determinants of perceived information need for EICT adoption by UK small service-oriented businesses.

Design/methodology/approach

The study adopted qualitative method to explore 13 key determinants of SME managers’ information behaviour for EICT adoption decision-making by using both unstructured and semi-structured interviews at two different stages with 20 participants drawn purposeful from Luton directories.

Findings

The study developed an extended technology, organisation and environment (TOE) framework by identifying and incorporating the information context which helped to unveil 13 key determinants of perceived information need and their impact on EICT adoption decision-making in SMEs. This further provided insight into understanding SMEs’ information behaviour. While the determinants associated with TOE and information contexts influence SMEs’ perceived information need for EICT adoption, the extent at which these four constructs shape SMEs’ perceived information need for EICT adoption decision-making differs.

Research limitations/implications

The limitation of this study emerged because of the use of qualitative methodologies in relation to the research design, rigour in the collection and management of the large volume of the raw data, the data analysis and the credibility of the findings. This may lead to unforeseen respondent – and research – bias in the data analysis, which may lead to limited understanding of alternatives and insights into the key determinants of perceived information need for EICT adoption decision. Hence, other measures and approaches such as case study and mix-method could be deployed to further validate the findings. Also, one of the limitations of qualitative study has been the issue of theoretical generalizability of the framework. The generalizability of the formwork needs to be established across a wider range of population. Future studies may apply a confirmatory statistical techniques to test and ascertain the validity and reliability of the framework across a wider population. Such studies may be used as a benchmark for the theoretical constructs and the factors that may lead to success or failure of mobile marketing technology adoption.

Originality/value

The study has further enriched TOE framework and provided an analytical dimension for exploring key determinants of SMEs’ perceived information need for EICT adoption decision-making. It also demonstrates the capacity to provide a reliable explanation of the determinants and serves as a tool for evaluating the benefits or challenges of SMEs’ information behaviours when the need for EICT adoption arises.

Details

The Bottom Line, vol. 32 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0888-045X

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Article
Publication date: 26 April 2019

Sunday C. Eze, Vera C. Chinedu-Eze, Adenike Oluyemi Bello, Henry Inegbedion, Tony Nwanji and Festus Asamu

The popularity and use of mobile marketing technologies or devices have led to significant interest from researchers and practitioners, particularly in small- and…

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1120

Abstract

Purpose

The popularity and use of mobile marketing technologies or devices have led to significant interest from researchers and practitioners, particularly in small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), where these technologies offer significant benefits to SMEs given the poor human capital and financial constraints encountered. The use of mobile marketing devices assists SMEs to boost their sales promotion strategies which aim at increasing the sales of their products and services. However, there has been limited focus on developing a suitable framework that enables the evaluation and shared an understanding of the factors influencing the adoption of mobile marketing technology by service SMEs in Nigeria. Therefore, this paper aims to develop a theoretically grounded framework for exploring these factors and explaining their impact on mobile marketing technology adoption in SMEs in Nigeria.

Design/methodology/approach

The study is qualitative and used both unstructured and semi-structured interviews with a total of 26 participants drawn purposively from NIJA database in Nigeria. Thematic analysis was deployed in analysing the data.

Findings

The study developed an extended technology organisation environment (TOE) framework by incorporating the value anticipation context which helped to unveil 16 key factors influencing mobile marketing technology adoption in service SMEs in Nigeria. The finding revealed that factors associated with the extended TOE framework have an impact on SMEs mobile le marketing technology adoption but at different levels.

Research limitations/implications

The limitation of this study emerged because of the use of qualitative methodologies about the research design, rigour in the collection and management of the large volume of the raw data, the data analysis and the credibility of the findings. This may lead to unforeseen respondent and research bias in the data analysis, which may lead to a limited understanding of alternatives and insights into the factors influencing the adoption of mobile marketing. Hence, other measures and approaches such as case study and mix-method could be deployed to validate the findings further. Also, one of the limitations of qualitative study has been the issue of theoretical generalizability of the framework. The generalizability of the formwork needs to be established across a broader range of the population. Future studies may apply confirmatory statistical techniques to test and ascertain the validity and reliability of the framework across a broader population of mobile marketing technology adopters in Nigeria. Such studies may be used as a benchmark for the theoretical constructs and the factors that may lead to the success or failure of mobile marketing technology adoption.

Originality/value

The study had further enriched TOE framework and provided an analytical dimension for exploring the adoption of mobile marketing technology. It also demonstrates the capacity to provide a reliable explanation of the factors and serves as a tool for evaluating the benefits or challenges of mobile marketing technology adoption in SMEs in Nigeria.

Details

Journal of Science and Technology Policy Management, vol. 10 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2053-4620

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Article
Publication date: 17 October 2018

Sunday C. Eze, Sulaimon Olatunji, Vera C. Chinedu-Eze and Adenike O. Bello

While a substantial number of studies have examined information behaviour, most centred on choice of information source, student information behaviour, information…

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2073

Abstract

Purpose

While a substantial number of studies have examined information behaviour, most centred on choice of information source, student information behaviour, information behaviour of women, environmental uncertainty and scanning behaviour of top-level hotel executives. However, little is known about how the small and medium enterprise (SME) managers scan, seek, gather, document and use information relevant for emerging information and communication technology (EICT) adoption decision-making. This paper aims to examine the key success factors influencing SME manager’s information behaviour on EICT adoption decision-making.

Design/methodology/approach

This study deploys a qualitative approach to exploring 16 key success factors shaping SME managers’ information behaviour on EICT adoption decision-making. More specifically, the study adopted both unstructured and semi-structured interviews with 20 small business managers drawn purposeful from Crunch Database.

Findings

This study develops an extended technology, organisation and environment framework by incorporating the information context which helped to unravel 16 key success factors influencing small business managers’ information behaviour on EICT. From the technology context, uncertainty driven, compatibility, replacement of legacy technology, relative advantages, lack of technical know-how and perceived affordability fit for purpose influence SME managers’ information behaviour. Users’ acceptance information, efficiency driven, owner’s support shape the organisation context of perceived information need; competitor’s intelligence gathering, customer’s information gathering provider credibility and government policy influence the environmental context of perceived information need; and finally, perceived information sources credibility, herding event, testimonial and openness to other people’s ideas and experiences are shaped by the information context.

Research limitations/implications

Qualitative research is normally subjective, interpretive and limited on the sample used. Because of the limited number of interviews, the generalisation of the framework and the finding is difficult. Therefore, the finding and the framework need to be established across broader population. The findings are vital considering the fact that small business managers are limited in knowledge and the study may improve the way and manner they go about seeking and gathering information relevant in adopting new ICT.

Originality/value

This research provides further insight into SME managers’ information behaviour by developing a framework and identifying main factors influencing SMEs information behaviours on EICT. Therefore, understanding such factors will enrich their knowledge on some of the factors that may shape their decisions during EICT adoption decision to make effective decision.

Details

The Bottom Line, vol. 31 no. 3/4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0888-045X

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Article
Publication date: 5 March 2018

C. Eze Sunday and C. Chinedu-Eze Vera

Since the 1980s, a substantial number of theories have contributed extensively to information and communication technology (ICT) adoption. Much of such theories regarded…

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1752

Abstract

Purpose

Since the 1980s, a substantial number of theories have contributed extensively to information and communication technology (ICT) adoption. Much of such theories regarded ICT adoption as a one-off action as they specifically focus on factors affecting decision making at one decision point. They tend to play down on the fact that as adoption decision progresses through stages, they are supposedly influenced by the same or different factors. Therefore, the purpose of this paper is to examine the dynamic process of ICT adoption using the concepts of dynamic capabilities.

Design/methodology/approach

This study used qualitative approach to gain in-depth insight into the dynamic and evolutionary process of emerging information and communication technology (EICT) adoption in UK small service SMEs. Unstructured and semi-structured interviews were conducted in two separate rounds with 26 participants drawn from Crunch Online Data Base and Luton Business Directory. The participants were selected from a sample of 65 drawn from extended classification of professional service businesses proposed by Ramsey et al. (2008). They include managers, government agencies, SMEs consultants and IT vendors; and then purposeful random sampling and snowball sampling were used.

Findings

The study developed a framework from the concept of dynamic capabilities and found that using the concept of dynamic capabilities to examine the process of EICT adoption helps to unveil the recursive nature of the process and how the factors vary at both single and multiple stages of adoption.

Research limitations/implications

This study is limited by its focus and other factors. Studying the opinions of small service UK SMEs limits the power of generalizing the identified causal relationships; therefore, extended measures are required on accounts of environmental, cultural, geographical and sectoral differences. While some errors seemed unavoidable when measures appear subjective and prone to common error biases, the study advised on recognizing the over-riding influence of the factor(s) at each stage of the adoption process in order to be proactive in committing resources.

Originality/value

This work focuses on emerging ICT adoption in SMEs from the dynamic and evolutionary process perspective using the concept of dynamic capability. It advances ICT adoption research by developing a framework to depict that ICT is not a one-off event, rather it is dynamic and interactive in nature and factors influencing adoption vary from one stage or the other.

Details

Journal of Enterprise Information Management, vol. 31 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-0398

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Article
Publication date: 4 December 2020

Sunday C. Eze, Vera C. Chinedu-Eze and Adenike O. Bello

Although several researchers have made significant efforts to examine the adoption of social media marketing technology in Nigeria, many have focussed on large…

Abstract

Purpose

Although several researchers have made significant efforts to examine the adoption of social media marketing technology in Nigeria, many have focussed on large organizations while others have constantly extrapolated the findings obtained in the Western world as if small and medium enterprises (SMEs) have the same structure, managerial capabilities, and operate in the same way. This has hindered the development of an integrated framework aimed at unravelling the factors shaping the adoption of social media marketing applications in SMEs in Nigeria. The paper, therefore, aims to explore some antecedent factors that shape SMEs adoption of social media marketing applications in SMEs in Nigeria.

Design/methodology/approach

The study deployed a qualitative approach with the use of unstructured and semi-structured interviews with a total of 20 participants drawn purposeful from Nigeria directories and analysed by using a hybrid method of thematic analysis.

Findings

The study developed an extended technology–organization–environment framework (TOE) framework that incorporated the communication context, which aids in identifying 11 key success factors shaping SMEs adoption of social media marketing technology in Nigeria. The findings associated with the extended TOE framework show that they have an impact on social media marketing technology adoption in SMEs.

Research limitations/implications

Because the researchers adopted the qualitative method, the findings may lead to some bias in the analysis of the data which may limit the insights into the key factors shaping the adoption of social media marketing technology adoption. Future studies may adopt a mixed-method approach or a comparative approach to confirm the finding and to better understand the critical factors linked to the framework. Although it is believed the with the use of thematic data analysis, the results are well associated with the structure; however, the structure has limitations. Drawing from the data analysis, the factors are limited. Other factors which may positively influence social media marketing adoption in SMEs. Hence, further studies are needed in this area in a bid to explore these factors by using different research appraoches.

Originality/value

The study has enriched the existing TOE framework and provided insights into the dominant issue faced by SMEs in adopting social media marketing technology, provided an analytical dimension, reliable explanation of these finding and tool for evaluating some of the challenges faced by SMEs in the adoption of social media marketing technology.

Details

Journal of Science and Technology Policy Management, vol. 12 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2053-4620

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Article
Publication date: 16 July 2018

Sunday C. Eze, Vera C. Chinedu-Eze and Adenike O. Bello

While traditional theories of information and communication technology (ICT) adoption have been deployed to study ICT adoption in the past, these theories considers ICT…

Abstract

Purpose

While traditional theories of information and communication technology (ICT) adoption have been deployed to study ICT adoption in the past, these theories considers ICT adoption as static and rely on conceptualising factors as variables and predicting their levels of outcome at a single decision stage. Although much has been credited to these theories, they have continuously ignored the fact that as decisions to adopt are made and challenged along the adoption process, such decision can be influenced by the same, different or combination of factors at different stages of the adoption process. This paper aims to examine ICT adoption from a dynamic process perspective and to explore the key determinants and how these differ from one stage of the adoption process to another.

Design/methodology/approach

Qualitative method was adopted in this study. Both unstructured and semi-structured interviews were conducted in two separate stages using purposeful random sampling. Hybrid approach of thematic analysis was adopted in analysing the data.

Findings

This study develops a framework informed by actor network theory (ANT) concepts and finds that using ANT to examine the process of adoption helps to unveil the recursive nature of the process. The study reveals that the 14 determinants identified in this study influenced adoption at different stages. Factors such as ease of use, managerial time, customer focus and adoption influenced adoption at all the stages. This reveals that factors influencing ICT adoption are not static at one particular stage rather it may influence ICT adoption at different stages.

Research limitations/implications

Qualitative research is often subjective and interpretive in nature, and one of the limitations is the sample used in this research. Considering the small number of interviews carried out in this study, the generalisation of finding and the framework remains to be established across a wider population. Therefore, the factors presented could be limited considering that a number of practitioners that are involved in establishing emerging ICT are numerous. Therefore, other factors are prevailing to other industries or sectors that may provide scholars another way of examining these factors. Also, the framework demonstrates that it is a valuable analytical tool for researchers to examine how and why different actors including small and medium enterprise (SME) managers act around emerging ICT.

Originality/value

This study develops a framework that revealed the interactive and recursive nature of ICT adoption and the determinants influencing the process of ICT adoption at different stages thereby advancing ICT adoption research. The study challenges researchers to always consider ICT adoption as dynamic and unpredictable instead of one-off action as factors influencing its adoption are not static rather; they vary from one stage to another.

Details

Journal of Science and Technology Policy Management, vol. 10 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2053-4620

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Article
Publication date: 21 May 2020

Parisa Maroufkhani, Wan Khairuzzaman Wan Ismail and Morteza Ghobakhloo

Big data analytics (BDA) is recognized as a turning point for firms to improve their performance. Although small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are crucial for every…

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1315

Abstract

Purpose

Big data analytics (BDA) is recognized as a turning point for firms to improve their performance. Although small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are crucial for every economy, they are lagging far behind in the usage of BDA. This study aims to provide a single and unified model for the adoption of BDA among SMEs with the integration of the technology–organization–environment (TOE) model and resource-based view.

Design/methodology/approach

A survey of 112 manufacturing SMEs in Iran was conducted, and the data were analysed using structural equation modelling to test the model of this study.

Findings

The results offer evidence of a BDA mediation effect in the relationship between technological, organizational and environmental contexts, and SMEs performance. The findings also demonstrated that technological and organizational elements are the more significant determinants of BDA adoption in the context of SMEs. In addition, the result of this study confirmed that BDA adoption could enhance the financial and market performance of SMEs.

Practical implications

Providing a single unified framework of BDA adoption for SMEs enables them to appreciate the importance of most influential elements (technology, organization and environment) in the adoption of BDA. Also, this study may encourage SMEs to be more willing to use BDA in their businesses.

Originality/value

Although there are studies on BDA adoption and firm performance among large companies, there is a lack of empirical research on SMEs, in particular, based on the TOE model. SMEs differ from large companies in terms of the availability of resources and size. Therefore, this study aimed to initiate a conceptual framework of BDA adoption for SMEs to assist them to be able to take advantage of the adoption of such technology.

Details

Journal of Science and Technology Policy Management, vol. 11 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2053-4620

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Article
Publication date: 12 December 2019

Henry Inegbedion, Emmanuel Edo Inegbedion, Samuel Jesuorobo Osifo, Sunday C. Eze, Adebanji Ayeni and Olamide Akintimehin

Emphasis of previous research on e-banking has been on factors that influence its adoption or constraints to the adoption or the extent to which customer awareness…

Abstract

Purpose

Emphasis of previous research on e-banking has been on factors that influence its adoption or constraints to the adoption or the extent to which customer awareness influences its adoption. This study investigated “Exposure to/usage of e-banking channels: Implications for customer awareness and attitude in Nigeria”. The purpose of this paper is to determine the extent to which consumers’ exposure to and usage of e-banking channels influence their awareness and attitude towards e-banking in Nigeria.

Design/methodology/approach

The study used the quantitative research design; specifically, the conclusive research design was used and data collection was done through the survey method. The population of the study consisted of the customers of EcoBank, First bank and Zenith bank in Edo, Kogi and Kwara states of Nigeria. A structured questionnaire was used to elicit the desired data from 480 respondents selected from 30 branches of 3 banks in two states. One sample t test was used to test for significance of the usage of e-banking channels to customers’ awareness and attitude towards e-banking. Subsequently, regression analysis was performed to determine the predictive power of the e-banking channels.

Findings

Customers’ exposure to and usage of ATM, internet banking and mobile banking has significant influence on consumers’ attitude towards e-banking in Nigeria. In view of the findings, a modified model of customer usage and attitude towards e-banking in Nigeria is proposed.

Research limitations/implications

The customer’s inability to exercise absolute right on the banking option to use at all times and the non-inclusion of other channels of e-banking whose usage can influence consumers’ awareness and attitude towards e-banking.

Practical implications

The need for financial institutions, especially banks, to expose their customers to e-banking channels to demystify their fears as well as increase their awareness and thus influence their attitude to e-banking.

Social implications

Exposure of bank customers to e-banking will reduce cash transactions and thus help to significantly reduce social vices associated with physical cash, especially armed robbery.

Originality/value

The work is a departure from previous studies because it is the only one that has emphazised exposure to e-banking as a solution to awareness creation and positive attitude of customers. Its value lies in its potential to make e-banking user friendly in no distance time.

Details

Journal of Science and Technology Policy Management, vol. 11 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2053-4620

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