DEVELOPING COMPETENCIES IN THE ENTREPRENEURIAL SMALL FIRM FOR THE USE OF INTERNET IN THE MANAGEMENT OF CUSTOMER RELATION

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INTRODUCTION

INTRODUCTION In these times the development and growth of the world is unpredictable. The aim of this research is to critically explore the methods and findings which are used to full fill this research. One of the challenges for a successful business has to face is an optimizing customer satisfaction and developing customer relationship management. In this research the competency of small firms by the use of internet to build up customer relation is mentioned. Internet is the best tool technique to improve the marketing strategy and business for small scale sectors. Customer satisfaction is the important factor for the success of small and large firm. Customer Relationship Management is a process where a company tracks and organizes its contacts with its current and forthcoming customers. Marney states that ''with internet marketing, business owners and managers can reach their target markets without the need to face the customer personally or spend too much money on advertisements. All they have to do is take advantage of the wide reach of the internet. The use of internet plays a vital role to improve the customer relation in small firms without any loss. The implementation of internet can make the firm in an organised way. Many retail shops have their own web sites and they provide good customer relation for the goodwill of the firm. As the business becomes more international, the small firms visions are converted into value to an extent. ''Anything, anywhere, anytime. If 'dotcom' is not embedded in the marketing strategy then your company has not realized the world has changed'' (Patten, 2008, p.63). Internet is the fastest communication method for developing customer relationship management neither large nor small firms. Hosting a web by entrepreneurial small firm provides customer relationship management known as eCRM to a large extent and it will become an innovation for the company or firm. The researchers have done their methodology by in-depth interviews and the methods and research is critically evaluating by this critical review

LITERATURE REVIEW

The internet can be applied by companies as an integral part; • It can be used to support the full range of organizational function and processes that delivers products and services to customers. • The future role of the internet should form part of the vision of the company since its future impacts will be significant to most businesses. (Chaffey et.al, 2000, p.5) Customer Relationship Management is about creating a culture and climate in which the customer's voice is heard, valued and acted upon. Consequently a growing number of companies are giving their customer contact staff a higher authority to meet and even exceeds customer requirement. CRM is no longer something that only leading edge enterprises use to gain competitive advantage. It is now a necessity for survival (Buttle, 2004)Customer Relationship Management is a well used but often misunderstood process. eCRM allows companies to get closer to their customers through a combination of acquisition, relationship building via data management, as well as using to facilitate e-commerce. Other than large scale businesses, few small to medium-sized enterprises are implementing it effectively (Burns, 2002, p.6) The researcher mainly depends on in-depth interviews to find a better result on this topic. In-depth interviews are one of the best methods in qualitative research. . "The type of the relationship that develops between the interviewer and the respondent depends on factors such as background methodology, the research topic and objective and the style of interviewing." (Sarantakos S, 2005, p.277). Observation is one of the main tool techniques which are essential for the development of strength of a topic which is not mentioned or done by researcher

REVIEW OF THE PAPER

Methodology

The main and major purpose of this study is the critical evaluation of the chosen topic ''Developing competencies in the entrepreneurial small firms for the use of internet in the management of customer relationships'. For the critical evaluation, the method used in this study is not primary because the data collected to conducting this critical evaluation is a secondary source. The research is mainly exploratory rather than explanatory. This critical evaluation is a wider form of analysing and collecting information from secondary sources like books, journals and online sources. The aim of this critical evaluation is to criticize the methodology forwarded by the researcher. Detailed study from other research done by other authors, referring books and journals, online browsing is the main methods used for this critical evaluation. The evaluation is done by comparing the other researchers methodologies for getting potency for this evaluation. By evaluating we can make an argument against this topic and will get an additional key factor for doing this type of research.

Research Questions

How profitable is internet for customer relationship management in an entrepreneurial small firm? Did the researchers use all the probable methodologies for conducting this research? Are the findings of the researchers in context with the evidences given? What is the value of customer relationship management through internet for small firms in the current scenario?

Findings

According to the findings of the researchers, they found that the entrepreneurs had a general awareness and they proposed that the business and customer relation through internet are appreciable. Qualitative research method is widely used for the researchers' topic. In qualitative research method, the researchers adopted in-depth interviews for the sample collection and methodologies for findings and results. Focus group is one of the major methods in qualitative research method and it is a method of observing peoples various approaches and outlooks for the presented topic. By providing in-depth interviews by 25 entrepreneurs, the researchers give better findings for this topic. If the researchers conduct focus group, questionnaires, surveys , they may get more in sequence of developing competency in the use of internet. It is also an interesting issue which the researcher has raised at the end of his findings as, how competency can be developed to those entrepreneurs are well aware of their decisions, ideas and visions concerning web or internet for their businesses both in the sense of customer relationship management and profitability. As researchers in their findings have mentioned about the views ideologies of the entrepreneurs, and what they think about bringing internet into their firm, it was gathered that some find it beneficial yet or not conscious about the benefits such technique could offer their firm. Some entrepreneurs are encouraging their staff to learn more about the 'www' thing, but the other view of the entrepreneurs which can be observed is that though they are accepting the use of internet in some or the other way but still it is a bit difficult for them to bridge a gap which means the acceptance and the implementation. Small firms are finding it hard to invest their capital more into developing CRM through internet rather than concentrating on their product and target market.

Evaluation of Methodology

Methodology being a very important part of the research process, therefore the evaluation of the research depends on the methods carried out. The researchers have adopted qualitative research method for carrying out their research. According to researchers evaluation it can be critically evaluated that the researchers have done a fine work by carrying depth interviews with entrepreneurs and questioning them with all the pros and cons they are facing but the question can be raised that worlds an interview with 25 entrepreneurs in four months period of time was enough to gather conclusion about this research? The research could also apply other methodologies like surveys and questionnaires to get a general outlook of people on this topic. They could also have interviewed with staff of the small firm as they are the one who have to help the entrepreneur to implement the work. Their opinion also would have played very vital role. Another important method that could have been implemented here was the focus group. Focus group here would have proved very informative as they would be a large mass of people from whom the opinions could be gathered. Many answers to many questions would have been attained. Hence the evaluation of the methodology brings out the concern that the methodology adopted is commendable, yet they were ways to improvise the methodology and get a detailed conclusion.

Appraisal of how will evidence support conclusion

The researchers have done a deep research method on the topic. According to the conclusion and evidences provided it is acceptable that entrepreneurial small firm have some competency issue pertinent to them. The issues in which the researchers have raised implementing the idea of internet into entrepreneurial small firm are quite indisputable. The problems like entrepreneurial self development problem, technology acceptability problem, state where they are unsure. As to where to invest their capital are also very important matters which the researchers have talk about. This research is reviewed on theoretical model (Durkin and McGowan 2001) of appropriate competencies. The theoretical model is all about competency development, important of internet in supplier-buyer relationships. The researcher have used the theoretical method in a very approachable manner and have displayed their findings, keeping the theoretical model as an inspirational base from the awareness to the happening point to show the role of internet in competency development. The researchers have not clearly mentioned their positive or negative outlook on the topic. They have not stated that if they would agree to put forward the work of internet in entrepreneurial small firm in future. It was mentioned by the researchers in the beginning of the paper as well as in their conclusions that they are building on previous work by McGowan and Hill (1996) which suggested ways of an effective competency in web integration and relationship oriented use. My perspective says that though they were discussions on competency development and web integration, but I would like to place an argument that they were not much detailed study made on competency development. There were literature reviews provided but a personal take by the researcher on this would have explained it to yet another extend.

Statement of contribution

In this research there are places which have lacked researcher's attention. I can contribute in those areas and give a detailed view in this research so that it can be kept as a proposal for future research purpose. 1.Internet and entrepreneurial small firm being a global subject, I would bring out attitude and views of people from a global perspective. This would act as a strength to my research since there will be an opinion from most fractions of the world and the idea of using internet on entrepreneurial small firms will get more simplified due to the research done on a wide spread basics. 2.As per the research we can comprehend that though entrepreneurs are aware of the benefits of the internet yet they are conscious in implementing it into their firms, but my research contribution would be to give a support to the fact that internet would be a great assistance to the firm. 3.I can contribute giving more examples and customer incidents to show how the internet can be used to develop customer relation management. The approach would be more practical and my individual outlook. 4.A depth study would be made on the competency subject where major point of focus will be on how internet would help in self development competency and how it may work amongst the competency of different firms.

DISCUSSIONS

Critically evaluating this research has experienced some limitations as well as they were some strengths to it. The major limitation and strength met were: •Critical review has urged for a deep study of the topic which has helped to understand the details in a more detailed way and get a sight on this topic from another persons vision and also to put forward my view into it •Since it is a global context there was general awareness which I had about this topic even though a bit of research was done. But as a critic it was a simplified deal to an extent to criticize. •Since the researchers have used a lot of literature review based on their topic there are certain opinions used by the authors that are not specified well along with this context. But this research paper belongs to someone else it is a difficult state for the critic to criticize the opinions of other authors. •Internet and entrepreneurial small firms being a global market and wide context to be researched on, it becomes the complicative situation to comment on without knowing the global view and implementation of the topic everywhere.

CONCLUSION

The main motive behind this critical review is to have an enhanced approach into the methodologies used and the findings given by researchers in this topic. Due to some research limitations the researchers couldn't touch all the divisions of qualitative research. The researchers have put forwarded their conclusions and findings in a very interesting way overcoming the limitations which they had to face during this research process. This research has been carried very well by the researchers, but being a critic to critically evaluate this research I have raised some arguments in the main body of the research. The idea of carrying qualitative research methodology was followed by interviewing 25 entrepreneurs. I suggest that they could have been more interviews with the staff of entrepreneurial small firm and other methodologies could also have been used like surveys, questionnaires, focus group and impact conducting surveys to the sue of internet itself. There could have been more depth study on effective competency. As said earlier the researcher could have given a personal take on it, so as to make the reader understand what they think about it. The other issues which the researcher put forward implementing the ideas of internet in the small firms by the entrepreneurs is acceptable. The issues like entrepreneurial self competency development are a very important matter to be given a thought about. The theoretical model (Durkin and McGowan, 2001) was adopted and the awareness to the happening point is explained very well. Finally the researchers have not clearly mentioned their positive or negative outlook on the topic. They have not stated that if they would agree to put forward the work of internet in entrepreneurial small firm in future. Thus I would say that every research and research methodology has its own positive and negative side. The researcher here was content with the techniques which they have adopted to gather data and to run their analysis. But a critic can easily argue in his/her opinion that the analysis did not meet the whole areas or did not reach the satisfaction of the critic

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