A Study of Australian Small to Medium Tourism Enterprises and their ICT Adoption

By Carmine Sellitto, David A. Banks, Ann Monday and Stephen Burgess.

Published by The Organization Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

This paper reports on research that examined the adoption of information and computing technology (ICT) by a group of Australian small tourisms enterprises (SMTEs). The study captured operator perceptions on Internet use, strategic application of computers and the general use of technology within their businesses. The primary benefits identified from using ICTs by many of the tourism operators related to improved efficiencies and increased revenue, with the marketing and customer service being the areas in which technology was noted as providing the greatest value. Minimal evidence was found that ICTs were being used for strategic positioning of the business or for new product/service development. The study found that a high proportion of businesses classed as having an upper level of ICT expertise had implemented relatively interactive websites when compared to the lower ICT expertise operators. Focus group and interviews were used by the researchers to gather rich insights into the benefits and application areas in which 20 SMTEs used their ICT. Arguably, the findings will have relevance for small tourism operators (and researchers) in countries other than Australia, given the common global operating environment found amongst these small entities.

Keywords: Australia, SMTEs, Internet, Strategy, Tourism, Business Processes, Focus Group

International Journal of Knowledge, Culture and Change Management, Volume 9, Issue 6, pp.1-14. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.734MB).

Dr. Carmine Sellitto

Lecturer, School of Management & Information Systems, Victoria University, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

Carmine Sellitto is Research Associate with the Centre for Tourism and Services Research (CTSR) at Victoria University. He gained his PhD from RMIT University where he received the Business student award for innovation. Dr Sellitto has published widely and some of his 80 peer-reviewed publications have been on topics associated with e-business, information management and technology, tourism and IT, Internet-marketing, information quality, small business technology adoption and education.

David A. Banks

Lecturer, School of Computer and Information Science, University of South Australia, Adelaide, South Australia, Australia

David A. Banks is a lecturer in information systems at the University of South Australia. A key area of his research interest is Audience Response Systems (ARS) and he has used this technology to support teaching, research and consultancy since 1995. He will be a Visiting Research Scholar at Central Connecticut State University in late 2009, investigating the physiological responses of students using ARS in a number of learning situations. He is a member of the Editorial Review boards of a number of international journals, an Editor with the Journal of IT Education and edited a book exploring the use of ARS in higher education in 2006. He is a member of the British Computer Society and a Chartered IT Professional.

Ann Monday

Lecturer, Newcastle Business School, Northumbria University, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK

Ann Monday lectures in supply chain performance at the Newcastle Business School. Her current research is in the area of supply chain management for micro, small and medium-sized wine producers in the Australian wine industry . She has presented a number of papers at conferences in Australia, Finland, New Zealand, Canada, the USA, Ireland and the UK relating to both her supply chain interests and pedagogy. She is also on the editorial board and reviews for a number of journals.

Dr. Stephen Burgess

Senior Lecturer, Centre for Tourism and Services Research (CTSR), Victoria University, Victoria University, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

Dr. Burgess completed his PhD in the School of Information Management and Systems at Monash University. His thesis was in the area of small business interactions with customers via the internet. His research and teaching interests include the use of ICTs in small businesses (particularly in the tourism field), the strategic use of ICTs, and B2C electronic commerce. He has received a number of competitive research grants in these areas. He has completed several studies related to website features in small businesses and how well websites function over time. He has authored/edited three books and special editions of journals in topics related to the use of ICTs in small business and been track chair at the international ISOneWorld, IRMA, Conf-IRM and ACIS conferences in related areas. Dr Burgess is also an Associate of the Centre for Tourism and Services Research (CTSR) at Victoria University.

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