Factors impacting on technology acceptance for the micro/SME electronics retailer.
Connon, Neil G.
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The UK micro/SME (known here as SME) retail sector is very important to the economic well being of the country. Its ability to generate jobs as well as income makes it a key part of the drive towards economic growth, and as such it is supported by government through a variety of initiatives. One initiative in 2003 aimed to energise and invigorate practitioners into using internet based technologies more fully in their business practices. This supported the widely held belief that the internet can and does enhance and improve business efficiency. It also suggests that SMEs were not fully engaging with the technology and that the government felt that it was not at the desirable level. This thesis looks at the issues surrounding technology acceptance for the SME and in particular internet adoption in the retail sector. This work explains technology acceptance and the main determinants and moderators connected with this in an organisational setting providing the practitioner with insight into why some technologies are embraced and others underutilised, or not adopted at all. Previous academic work in this area has tended to focus on the larger organisation. This thesis uses the technology acceptance literature to explore the situation of the SME. Through qualitative and quantitative research the specifics of the SME situation relating to technology acceptance are explored with the determinants and moderators being evaluated and changes made where appropriate. The specific internet based technology of online procurement is used to measure levels of acceptance and the issues relating to it. The result is an adapted model that better reflects the technology acceptance situation of the SME retail organisation. In the model three of the original constructs remain, however the moderators have been changed to reflect the SME and the relationships the constructs have with the moderators are also developed. As a new addition to the field it can be seen from the developed model that the frequency of re-ordering is an important determinant not only of online procurement but technology acceptance in general. This work will benefit practitioners in SME retail and also the wider SME field when it comes to evaluating whether or not to accept a new technology and how this is best achieved.