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e-Business Initiative evaluation

Summary

Aims

The e-Business Initiative has aimed to raise awareness and accelerate adoption of e-business and supplier development amongst businesses in Dumfries and Galloway. To do this it provides a range of services including: information provision and sign-posting; grants to SMEs; delivery of seminars and workshops; one-to-one consultations to assist in needs identification and the potential of ICT and e-business; and supplier development.

Methods

The study was conducted in three stages: desk research; fieldwork of participating and non-participating businesses; and finally analysis, the running of a workshop and reporting back.

Findings

The evaluation has found that the key objective of the e-Business Initiative, to increase awareness and usage of ICT and e-business in SMEs has been met. It found that the e-Business Initiative is well structured and offers a variety of support at key stages in a company's e-business capability development. It is being well received by participating companies, especially the workshops. However there is a continued need to provide entry level assistance; and more companies need to be encouraged to progress up the e-business ladder and to begin online trading; and there is a need to target pro-actively new growth companies that would benefit from involvement in the Initiative, rather than focusing on self-selectors.

Recommendations

It was felt that the Initiative should move away from awareness raising to be more active in its encouragement of online trading. However it should continue to assist companies with regard to their ongoing e-business training and development requirements. In addition, market segmentation of service delivery is recommended as is the setting up of SME support networks and pilot schemes for Internet platforms.

Record metadata
Documents
Full Report (753 KB, doc)
ConsultantEKOS Limited
Published year2004
Pages58
Document TypeEvaluation
Theme/SectorCompany specific, Business infrastructure, Enterprise, Innovation, Business innovation