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everyone has a cellphone, which can work as a platform for marketing or selling products.

The recommendation would be that SMEs should start considering the adoption of various new technologies, making sure that such technologies are aligned with their business objectives. SMEs need to explore emerging technologies such as OSS, VoIP and mobile technologies. All this needs to be done at a strategic level, meaning that SMEs should employ the right people to assist in these studies and the implementation thereof, as discussed above in the workforce knowledge section.

5.4 Awareness of ICT

In terms of the awareness of ICT, the study revealed that SMEs do not know much about the knowledge economy and that they know very little about ICT. This is in agreement with the literature, which highlights lack of knowledge as a problem. For example, in order for you to succeed at playing soccer you need to understand the game and its rules. Similarly, businesses rely on information in order to make informed decisions that will give them a competitive advantage.

The literature review (see page 27) has shown/highlighted that many SMEs apply ICT haphazardly based on various reasons such as market influence, sales hype, supplier influence or customer influence. The application is thus not often based on sound knowledge or business strategy. This problem is caused by a lack of expert knowledge of ICT within the SME.

As Martin (2005) emphasises, the owner-manager of the SME has limitations, including gaps in knowledge or capability. If the owner-manager does not know much about ICT or the knowledge economy, this will impact the business since he or she sets the culture of the business.

MIT 840

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