Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate a means of measuring information technology (IT) strategy improvements in small to medium‐sized enterprises (SMEs). Design/methodology/approach – A longitudinal study of eight SMEs was carried out over a two‐year period, applying an IT development scorecard which uses a Likert scale to measure changes during the study period. Findings – The paper finds that seven of the eight companies assessed during the period of the study showed improvements in their IT development, with only one company showing negligible improvement. The company that made negligible improvement went into receivership 12 months after completion of the study. Research limitations/implications – The key limitations were that only eight companies were prepared to participate fully in the study, and the diversity of type of company was large. Future research should include a larger sample size and use of companies from within the same industry/sector. Practical implications – The scorecard has practical implications in that instead of having to choose complicated IT planning systems or pay high consultancy charges, SME owner managers can use the scorecard themselves at no cost and make informed decisions on IT investments. Originality/value – This particular design of scorecard has not been used before, it is original, and will be of use for SME owner managers and IT practitioners, as it provides an easy‐to‐use tool to help plan and measure IT development within SMEs.
Journal of Systems and Information Technology – Emerald Publishing
Published: Jan 30, 2009
Keywords: Small to medium‐sized enterprises; Communications technologies; Continuous improvement; Corporate strategy; United Kingdom
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