E-Commerce Maturity Model (Compariosn of Four Models)

Topics: Management, Strategic management, Business process modeling Pages: 15 (4833 words) Published: March 16, 2008


Wrycza et al.'s Research (2007)3

Rao et al.'s research (2003)5

Prananto et al.'s research (2004)7

Alonso Mendo and Fitzgerald's research (2005)9

The usefulness of using E-Commerce Maturity Model (ECMM)11




In today's economy, organisations try to gain strategic and operational advantages over other competitors in their industry because of the rapid advance of technology and globalisation. Companies can have great opportunities to sell their products to new customers, to buy cheap raw materials from new suppliers and to have new business partners in other countries via internet. Therefore, many organisations have introduced E-business as a critical part of business strategies. E-business is not a jargon, which can be used in technical ways within a particular group of people, anymore. Frank (1997, cited in (Ramsey and McCole, 2005) described the new age without internet enabled capabilities as "trying to compete today without a sales force or a telephone." Willcocks et al (2000) emphasise that it is wrong to ask "What are you doing about e-business?" instead of "What should I be doing about e-business?". Introducing E-business is not an option, but an imperative for survival in competitive today's economy.

According to CENSUS (2000, 2007) in US, retail e-commerce sales have been significantly increased from $29 billion in 2000 to $108 billion in 2006. E-marketer (2007) also reports that the total retail online sales were $132.9 billion in 2006 and they will reach approximately $407 billion in 2011. In addition, 80 % of global economic growth is originated in SMEs and 99% of North America and Europe's businesses are SMEs (Jutla et al., 2002). Thus, US, European Union and other governments has encouraged and supported e-business adoption to SMEs, as a new growth engine of global economy (Rao et al., 2003; OECD, 2001). However, despite of the advantages of e-business and government supports, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are hesitant to introduce e-business due to limited budget, potential business risks, internal resistance, lack of technical expertises and security issues, while large enterprises have quickly adopted it (Papazafeiropoulou et al., 2002, Ramsey and McCole, 2005, Wrycza et al., 2007)

In order to solve slow e-business development in SMEs, many researchers have recently proposed different E-Commerce Maturity Models (ECMM), including a stage (ladder) development model and a contingent (transforter) model. ECMM can describe facilitators and barriers to adopt advance e-commerce, and suggest a guideline of efficient and effective e-commerce adoption to SMEs which are planning to introduce e-commerce technologies at the first time or to move to a further stage. In this paper, four different researches about ECMM for SMEs will be discussed and criticised with their strength and weakness, and then the usefulness of using models to decide e-commerce maturity in organisations will be assessed in the business and strategy perspective.

Wrycza et al.'s Research (2007)
This paper specially focuses on the use of two dominant ECMMs, such as the stage model and the contingent model, in European region. On the basis of conducted researches in the stage model, authors present five steps of model as followed: "Internet access (e-mail and browser)

Creating a company portal
E-commerce- purchasing and selling of goods and services E-business- EB=EC+BI+CRM+SCM+ERP
Network organisations, virtual enterprises and digital ecosystems" (Wrycza et al., 2007)
They also define the contingent model with two important factors. "Plans of business growth
Evaluation of the usefulness of internet technology" (Wrycza et al., 2007)
They executed the survey about which model is popularly used in 341 SMEs in European region. The result shows that the stage model is...
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