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Consideration of the SME is not made; success is measured from a technology point of view and not on the success of the business.

This perspective holds dangers for both SMEs and large business. There have been reports of failures of ERP and CRM projects within organisations; one of the biggest problems is not the technology but the readiness of the organisation to embrace the technology. There are a number of things that the organisation needs to take into consideration when implementing technology, for instance, the organisational culture should be technology oriented; business processes need to be flexible in order to consider technology; one needs to check the availability of IT skills needed for implementing the technology, and so on. Lack of consideration of these factors might cause failures in the adoption process.

  • Management and organisation of technology perspective. This view is similar to the one above, but with greater emphasis on the management or organisational aspects. This view lays emphasis on the strategic approach to ICT by SMEs and on the capabilities and structures of the SMEs.

  • Small firm and ICT from the small firm perspective. This view focuses on the SMEs and how they use technology as a tool to improve their competitiveness. This perspective takes into consideration the vision of the SME. Many authors on this topic are now starting to place emphasis on this viewpoint.

The approach of this paper will be based on this last perspective, looking at the owner-managers and how they factor technology into the strategy of the business in order to help the business to become more competitive. It

MIT 840

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