EDI and Small/Medium Enterprises

EDI and Small/Medium Enterprises

R. C. MacGregor (University of Wollongong, Australia) and D. J. Bunker (University of New South Wales, Australia)
Copyright: © 2000 |Pages: 10
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-878289-76-6.ch009
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Abstract

Small/ medium enterprises (SMEs) represent a sizeable proportion of the GDP of most western economies. Not only are they the single largest employer of both skilled and unskilled labour but they make up a large proportion of the supply chain of larger enterprises. Although there is a strong advocacy for the potential of EDI to improve the performance of those firms involved in the industrial supply chain, Lee, Clark and Tar (1999) suggest that much of the improvement—which includes areas such as: improving the bottom line; working faster and better in the organisation; gaining strategic advantage; strengthening customer relations; preparing for the future in business—benefits the EDI champion rather than those coerced into EDI use. Studies (Kilbane, 1998; Tucker, 1997) have shown that noncompliance to EDI by SMEs can result in larger enterprises being ‘limited’ in their own business practices often far more than the small business’s economic contribution. A number of reasons have been put forward in the literature as to why SMEs have been slow, or indeed resistant to adopt EDI. These include high set-up costs, poor security and limited EDI partners. While clearly these are important, Harvey (1992) and Mackay (1992) suggest that when attitudes to EDI are being considered, this must be taken in the context of attitudes to IT in general. Based on the views of both Harvey (1992) and Mackay (1992), this chapter examines two studies carried out in Australia. The first study examined the attitudes of SME managers towards the acquisition of IT in their organisations. 131 small businesses were surveyed, the results suggesting small business managers considered the benefits expressed by EDI advocates (improving the bottom line; working faster and better in the organisation; gaining strategic advantage; strengthening customer relations; preparing for the future in business) as being of little consequence. Rather, their primary considerations for the adoption of IT were cost/benefit, ease of use and performance. A second study concentrated on 16 of the respondents from the first study who had adopted EDI in order to conduct business with Australia’s largest steel- making company, Broken Hill Proprietary (BHP). While the second study is, at best, a pilot, both suggest that designers and advocates alike need to examine the small business environment more closely. They need to realise that the operation of SMEs differs markedly from their larger counterparts and that small businesses’ managers are more interested in maintaining the operational level of the firm rather than attempting to gain a strategic advantage.

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Table of Contents
Preface
Syed Mahbubhur Rahman, Mahesh S. Raisinghani
Chapter 1
Mahesh S. Raisinghani
At the brink of the new millennium, in global economy and commerce, there has been a dramatic increase in the role of information technology in... Sample PDF
Electronic Commerce at the Dawn of the Third Millennium
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Chapter 2
David Gordon, James E. Skibo
The selling of goods and services on the Internet has evolved from a hypothetical business concept into a thriving, multi-billion dollar industry... Sample PDF
Building E-Commerce From the Ground Up: A Study of the Retail Industry
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Chapter 3
Robert B. Johnston
Many authors (Cunningham and Tynan, 1993; Dearing, 1990; Johnston, 1998; Rochester, 1989; Skagen, 1989; Swatman, 1993) now recognize that the... Sample PDF
Principles of Digitally Mediated Replenishment of Goods: Electronic Commerce and Supply Chain Reform
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Chapter 4
Ronald M. Lee
This chapter introduces the concept of an electronic trade scenario as an aid to the management of (global) supply chains, and other forms of... Sample PDF
Electronic Trade Scenario for Global Supply Chains
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Chapter 5
Charles Trappey, Amy Trappey, Thomas Gulledge, Rainer Sommer
Beginning in 1993, when the U.S. Federal Government proposed the “framework of electronic commerce (EC),” the call went out for the wide-scale... Sample PDF
Promoting Electronic Commerce in the Defense Industry
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Chapter 6
Mohammed A. Quaddus
Diffusion is the process by which a new technology spreads in its usage among a population. This chapter analyses the diffusion process of one... Sample PDF
Diffusion of Electronic Commerce in Australia: A Preliminary Investigation
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Chapter 7
Liaquat Hossain
This chapter examines the risk factors for firms investing in e-commerce or electronic commerce in New Zealand. The relationships between the intra... Sample PDF
Planning E-Strategies for New Zealand Firms: A CSF Framework for Investigating in E-Commerce Projects
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Chapter 8
Andreas Mitrakas
Open EDI is a concept appropriate to address the needs of commercial business-to-business relationships in an open environment. While open EDI, an... Sample PDF
Electronic Commerce Contracting for Open EDI
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Chapter 9
R. C. MacGregor, D. J. Bunker
Small/ medium enterprises (SMEs) represent a sizeable proportion of the GDP of most western economies. Not only are they the single largest employer... Sample PDF
EDI and Small/Medium Enterprises
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Chapter 10
Rahul A. Sarker, Mahbubur Rahman Syed
Electronic data interchange (EDI) technology gives organizations an opportunity to exchange their information and messages electronically, instead... Sample PDF
Economics of EDI Investments
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Chapter 11
Marium Fergusson
The Internet offers enormous potential as a means of communication, doing business and providing channels for service delivery. The most striking... Sample PDF
Internet Business Models for Government Agencies
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Chapter 12
Joan Cooper, Lois Burgess
The commercialisation of the Internet has led to widespread usage of on-line services and being connected to the Internet has become a high priority... Sample PDF
A Model of Internet Commerce Adoption (Mica)
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Chapter 13
Ly Fie Sugianto, Sen Sendjaya
Internet commerce has brought forward a new spectrum of business practice. It radically changes the way we do business. These changes have been... Sample PDF
E-Retailing: New Opportunities In Internet Commerce
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Chapter 14
Thomas F. Stafford, Marla Royne Stafford
The purpose of this chapter is to explore theoretical background and previous research on new media uses and motivations as an avenue to... Sample PDF
Consumer Motivations for Commercial Web Site Use: Antecedents to Electronic Commerce
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Chapter 15
Boon-Chye Lee
The payments system is a linchpin of the modern economy. Transactions involving non-cash payment for goods, services, or the transfer of asset... Sample PDF
The Retail Payments System and Internet Commerce
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Chapter 16
Teoh Kok Poh, Sheng-Uei Guan
The introduction of smart card technology offers an alternative for user authentication and storage medium for data that require both high security... Sample PDF
Internet-enabled Smart Card Agent Environment and Applications
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Chapter 17
Klaus Turowski
The Internet has created a tremendous opportunity to conduct business electronically. By this, innovative business concepts—such as virtual... Sample PDF
Supporting Innovative Competitive Strategies as Mass Customization by Pairing E-Commerce Techniques with Agent Technology
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Chapter 18
Xun Yi, Chee Kheong Siew, Mahbubur Rahman Syed
Because electronic commerce provides customers with more convenient and more money-saving services than conventional trading, it has seen explosive... Sample PDF
Electronic Commerce Based on Software Agent
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Chapter 19
Timothy K. Shih
The Internet changes our shopping style. With the growing popularity of Web browsers, electronic commerce (EC) has become a trend of next-generation... Sample PDF
A Mobile Agent Computation Model for Best Buy Searching
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Chapter 20
Yang Yang, Sheng-Uei Guan
With the proliferation of Internet, electronic commerce (e-commerce) is beginning to take the center stage in the commerce world. Transactions via... Sample PDF
The Design and Architecture of a Secure Agent Transport Protocol for E-Commerce
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Chapter 21
T. Deshani Rodrigo, Peter A. Stanski
E-commerce technologies are continually evolving, bringing about innovative developments and resultant benefits. Herein one such visionary path for... Sample PDF
The Evolving Future of Agent-Based Electronic Commerce
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Chapter 22
Matthew Warren, William Hutchinson
In the developed world, the influence of information systems can now be seen in most operational areas of business. A significant result of these... Sample PDF
The Use of the Internet by Terrorists and Its Impact Upon Electronic Commerce
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Chapter 23
Assafa Endeshaw
A great deal of uncertainty surrounds the impact of the continuing growth of electronic commerce (e-commerce) on existing law. While commercial law... Sample PDF
The Law vis-à-vis Electronic Commerce
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Chapter 24
Severine Dusollier, Laetitia Rolin Jacquemyns
In the Communication on Electronic Commerce of 19971 , the European Commission stressed that “in order to allow electronic commerce operators to... Sample PDF
The Challenge of the Law to Electronic Commerce: The European Union Initiatives
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About the Authors