Differences in response

The findings suggested that there were differences in responses for ten of the 16 factors based on organisational size, current state of e-business model adoption and management perspective. Respondents from large enterprises agreed that the types of business strategy and the type of industry as two important factors in their choice of B2B e-business models, as they acknowledged the importance of the inclusion of e-business activities in the business plan and recognised that specific industry characteristics would influence the nature of the enterprise and thus choice of a suitable e-business model. In contrast, respondents from SMEs were more concerned with three other factors; understanding of e-business models, on-and off-line marketing strategies and objectives and market trends, as they believed these factors could further enhance the competitiveness of their organisations in competing with those large enterprises in the industry.

Respondents in organisations that had adopted an ebusiness model, agreed that the organisational structure and culture, type of industry and competitors' influence were critical to their model selection. Respondents revealed the importance of mission and vision statements in the e-business models selection process and the need to continually observe competitors. On the other hand, respondents in organisations that were intending to adopt e-business models suggested that market trends and the on-and off-line marketing strategy and objectives were crucial because of the need to keep up with market trends and development.

From the management perspective, respondents believed that consultant's advice was important. Respondents acknowledged that consultants had the expertise and knowledge to provide them with suggestions to assist in making better decisions. In contrast, respondents from operational roles indicated that consultant's influence was not seen as important since these respondents had minimal involvement in their respective organisations' strategic planning. Furthermore, respondents suggested that they had very few opportunities to interact with consultants, therefore diminishing the potential influence.

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