Industrial manufacturing technology diffusion of Malaysian manufacturing small and medium enterprises (SMEs)

Ahmad Murad, M 2016, Industrial manufacturing technology diffusion of Malaysian manufacturing small and medium enterprises (SMEs), Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Business, RMIT University.


Document type: Thesis
Collection: Theses

Attached Files
Name Description MIMEType Size
AhmadMurad.pdf Thesis Click to show the corresponding preview/stream application/pdf;... 4.28MB
Title Industrial manufacturing technology diffusion of Malaysian manufacturing small and medium enterprises (SMEs)
Author(s) Ahmad Murad, M
Year 2016
Abstract This thesis is set out to achieve two major objectives. The first is to examine the philosophy underlying the technology decisions in Malaysian Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) manufacturing companies. The second objective is to identify and validate factors impacting the technology decisions in Malaysian manufacturing companies.

A mixed methodology has been utilized to answer three research questions. The mixed methodology involves two phases which are the quantitative and qualitative data collection and analysis. The exploratory sequential design is the specific mixed methods design employed in this study. The purpose of the two-phase, exploratory mixed methods study was to explore participants’ views with the intention of using the information to validate the construct developed based on the literature and past researches, investigating new constructs to be included in this study, refining the questionnaire and further testing the hypotheses.

The researcher conducted Study 1, a qualitative pre-study interview of the selected companies to obtain as much information and data as possible to be included in the questionnaire survey to be made useful in Study 2. Study 1 was conducted using semi-structured interview questions. The objectives were to show the reason for Malaysian manufacturing SMEs engagement in technology adoption and to validate the existing variables and determine more variables to incorporate into a choice-based survey questionnaire. The first finding shows that the reason of the technology decision by Malaysian manufacturing SMEs lies in survival. Based on the second major finding, the researcher has found that there are significant factors to be included in the initial theoretical framework for this study; cost and top management commitment. Based on the literature, both factors have been tested empirically in some prior research of technology adoption by other authors. This indicates the importance of these factors to be included in the proposed theoretical framework. Additionally, the researcher builds new hypotheses for both. Further investigation is presented in Study 2.

For Study 2, the researcher has conducted the questionnaire survey with a sample number of Malaysian manufacturing SMEs in order to gauge ample relevant information required to achieve the research objectives. In Study 2, the researcher analysed the stages using the Factor Analysis and found that from five stages proposed by Rogers (1962), they then became two stages. These were renamed the ‘Initiation’ stage which consists of knowledge, persuasion, and decision stages and ‘Implementation’ stage which consists of implementation and confirmation stages with some items dropped. Furthermore, multiple regression revealed the significant predictors technology decision process by Malaysian manufacturing SMEs. The factors that influence the initiation stage of the technology decision process are: technology attributes (relative advantages, complexity), organizational factors (adhocracy culture, top management support), and external environment factors (environmental dynamism, environmental hostility). The factors that influence the implementation stage of the technology decision process are similar to the initiation stage for organizational factors and external environment factors. The difference technology attributes namely compatibility and complexity that influence the implementation stage of the technology decision process. Based on the Diffusion of Innovation (DOI) theory, Technology-Organization-Environment (TOE) framework, and findings of Study 2, the model for the technology decision process in Malaysian manufacturing SMEs is suggested to illustrate the technology decision process in Malaysian manufacturing SMEs.

This thesis allows the understanding of the technology decision process with the intention to facilitate manufacturing companies’ decision makers to consider and plan potential adoption of industrial manufacturing technologies. At a practical level, the findings from the research provide important implications towards Malaysian manufacturing companies’ decision makers and stakeholders regarding technology adoption. The discussion reveals that the understanding of process behaviour may accelerate technology diffusion and tighten links between technology developers and users/adopters, as well as create and nurture supportive systems and infrastructure for technology diffusion. The outcomes also contribute to the theoretical understanding of industrial manufacturing technologies adoption and diffusion by manufacturing SMEs in Malaysia.
Degree Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Institution RMIT University
School, Department or Centre Business
Subjects Innovation and Technology Management
Keyword(s) Technology diffusion
Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs)
Adoption
Industrial manufacturing technology
Technology decision process
Versions
Version Filter Type
Access Statistics: 211 Abstract Views, 226 File Downloads  -  Detailed Statistics
Created: Fri, 03 Mar 2017, 08:58:21 EST by Denise Paciocco
© 2014 RMIT Research Repository • Powered by Fez SoftwareContact us