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Title: The effects of individual, organizational and environmental factors on the adoptions of e-commerce by SMEs in the Netherlands : an examination of factors influencing managerial beliefs, attitudes and the use of an e-commerce system using the technology acceptance model
Author: Castricum, Marc C.
Awarding Body: University of Bradford
Current Institution: University of Bradford
Date of Award: 2006
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Since the 1990s the use of the Internet and electronic commerce (e-commerce) has exploded, yet few SMEs seem to benefit from its potential. The lack of personal involvement and low level of use are an indication that managers still have not committed themselves to e-commerce. Consequently they are not reaping the full benefits first hand. The objectives of the study are to identify key factors and relationships likely to influence e-commerce use by SME managers in the Netherlands and to investigate whether relevant and significant factors can be combined in a new model to predict how SME managers will use new technology. To achieve these objectives, a well-established model of IT usage behaviour, the Technology Acceptance Model (TAM), was used. Building upon TAM, a theoretical research model was developed to investigate a large number of external variables that are possible antecedents of managerial beliefs, attitudes, and the use of IT. E-commerce systems were chosen as the IT tool under review. A cross-sectional field survey was conducted to investigate the theoretical research model. The results are based on the analysis of questionnaire data from 114 managers from Dutch SMEs. Using Structural Equation Modelling (SEM) the results show significant support for external variables, mostly of an individual nature, in the categories of demographics, managerial and IT knowledge, individual characteristics, and company characteristics. Contrary to expectations, two categories - social factors and environmental characteristics - had few or no variables with a significant relationship. This study further presents empirical evidence to suggest a limited number of antecedents under managerial control influencing beliefs, attitudes, and use. A better understanding of the various factors that may impede or increase effective utilization of IT can facilitate the design of organizational or managerial interventions that address these issues. Building on the core TAM model a new model, the e-Tam Model, has been developed based on the results of the theoretical research model. In this model, it is hypothesized that IT usage is directly and indirectly influenced by seven external variables divided into three categories: demographics, personality, and company characteristics. Using the e-Tam Model, effective and increased use of managerial IT tools can be promoted. This will enable managers to have a better use of e-commerce systems leading in turn to better margins and opportunities.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.B.A.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Environmental factors; e-Commerce; SMEs; Netherlands; Organizational factors; Managerial beliefs; Attitudes