What Drives Technology Change Business Essay

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The term is identical with advancement of technology, development and progress in technology. In principle, Technological Change (TC) is the creation of a skill or knowledge or method or process, the uninterrupted procedure of refining an existing technology and its diffusion in the industry or society. For easier understanding, we can say that technological change is centred on improved and additional technology.

Technological Change; that was demonstrated with the Linear Models of Innovation, is now described by a more integrated model of that implicates innovation in all the phases, processes and functions of an organisation. Hence, Modelling Technological Change often means the process of Innovation.

In definitional language, Innovation is simply a designed, measured combination of actions intended to yield a definite result for specific target market. Innovation is the one of the most important components of Entrepreneurship.

Drivers of Technology or Drivers of Innovation are the factors that persuade an organization to innovate. Those are the stimulus for an organization through which they carry the Innovation process.

To have a complete knowledge of the reason of innovation is what it takes to determine the drivers of technology change for a successful innovation. These drivers function as the stimulus for the contributors in the organization, to wake them up from their sleep and to sense un-satisfaction, individually and communally; with their ongoing status of operations. Uneasiness among members creates an opening and provides an area or space for transformation in the existing organizational texture.(Leonard-Barton, 1995)

As a matter of fact, change can occur in any and numerous forms. But, all types of changes can be broadly categorized under two types i.e. Incremental Innovation and Radical Innovation. Incremental Innovation is about performing the existing operations in a better way and Radical Innovation is about doing which has not been done before by anyone. The approach of the organization to do Incremental or/and Radical innovation, is the key driver to all the technological changes in the organization.(Tidd and Bessant, 2009)

Innovation of any type, Incremental or Radical; is driven according to the boundaries and capabilities of the innovation space of the organization. It is a space in which an organization can operate. Innovation Space can encompass different types of changes, but can be classified under four heads known as the 4Ps of Innovation Space. They are:

Product Innovation: Changes in the products and services.

Process Innovation: Changes in the ways of producing and offering the products and services.

Position Innovation: Changes in the perspective of introducing these products and services.

Paradigm Innovation: Changes in the organizational framework.

Mapping and assessing innovation according to the framework provided by 4Ps helps an organisation to drive its innovation process in the intended direction.(Tidd and Bessant, 2009)

With the advancement of time, industries have exhibited different ways and models to lead innovation in organizations. All these models were characterized with different processes and motives to conduct innovation in the organizations, thus showcasing numerous drivers or sub- drivers of innovation. These models towards innovation have been popularised by Rothwell as The Five Generations of Innovation.(Rothwell, 1994) The models can be mapped on the innovation space circle regulated by the 4Ps.

In the first Generation model i.e. The Technology Push model, where the commercial highlight of production companies was on the Research and Development to introduce new products in the Market. Thus the, R&D became the major driver of Innovation. In the second Generation model i.e. the Market Pull model emphasized more on the need of the market and innovating according to the needs, thus making the users the drivers of the technological changes.The later models of innovation i.e. fourth and fifth models of innovation were characterized by integrated systems with networking and use of electronic toolkit. The fourth and the fifth models of innovation are the most prevalent innovation in the present day organizations. The implementation of these models has hugely changed the global scenario towards innovation perception.(Neely and Hii, 1998)

Among the foremost factors of Technological Change in the current era, the increasing populace, escalating frugality, desires of quality lifestyle in the evolving world and the consequential gigantic energy, ecological and communal pressures are sure to feature very heavily. The ongoing century will witness advancement of technology and its application in an extensively distributed Innovation, encompassing equal amount of risks and great opportunities. The most essential prerequisite for successful innovation would be that we must address those opportunities and risks by boosting and enabling an approach of inclusiveness of science and technology in the areas of education, industry and society.

Majority of the organizations in the present economy, conduct Innovation out of catastrophe or as a reaction to an exterior action. For organizations of these types, ascertaining the drivers for Innovation is very upright. The typical crises that occur are due to unmanageable costs, diminishing returns, noteworthy alteration in tastes of the customers, danger of a fresh competitor or a 'game changer' that enters the industry or market, or harm of essential personnel. This information is ample enough to define the framework and to persuade the organization out of gratification or anxiety. Earnestness is imperative if an organization is in a crisis. Organizations that are highly prosperous are prospective to have certain kind of Innovation process already at hand, but it may not be dignified. However, these organizations know that the most dominating determinant of their ongoing success is uninterrupted Innovation. Leading organizations mostly focus their innovative strategies towards profit making or corporate model rather than on achieving more efficacies in manufacturing or modifying their occupational arrangement.(Kline and Rosenberg, 1986)

The concept of Innovation incorporates various facets such as imagining of original operational approaches, the existing design of processes in motion, and the execution of the modification in its multifaceted aspects of technology, man force, and industry. Economic institutions that establish such processes in their functioning possess a great chance of achieving competitive driver for conducting successful Innovation. Today, when the notion of competition has been stretched down to the level of implementation of strategies, organisations often try to flatter their customers on the grounds of Innovation. Thus, attaining Competitive Advantage is another major driver of technology change in the modern day organisations. Organizations, via innovation, can gain Competitive Advantage by assisting in implementing technology that would support low-cost producer strategies. Companies that achieve cost efficiency in their distribution channels and logistics can afford to forward on the cost benefits to their customers and also attract more potential users.(Porter, 1998)

In the present day economy, customers dominate the market. They have increasingly become an impetus for Technological Change. Due to the competition in the market, customers have a variety of products and services to choose from. So, if they don't like an organization's products and services, they can completely reject it and deprive the organization from its sales.(Bijker, 1995) And this has highly been noticeable in the sectors of the retail and automobile industries. "Auto manufacturers, responding to intense foreign competition in the 1980s, forced suppliers to increase the quality, speed, and timeliness of their manufacturing and delivery processes. In the retail industry, Wal-Mart has established practices of continuous replenishment, supplier shelf management, and simplified communications that have significantly influenced its suppliers, including such giants as General Electric and Procter & Gamble."(Davenport, 1993)

Cost Efficiency is another powerful driver of Innovation. Organizations that procure heavy loans due to increased purchases or providing funds for corporate acquisitions often need to amend their expenditures noticeably to mend their scale of profit. Change in technology can be more beneficial at eliminating unessential expenses than cutting down costs on other substitutes like commercial unit sales and premature retirement packages. Out of majority of the operational motives that private segment economic establishments initiate programs of technology change, most of them can be outlined to the necessity for making their fiscal performances more efficient and effective.(Davenport, 1993)

There are other occasions that provide opportunities for Innovation. For illustration, an organization may aspire to remodel a procedure, which demands to be accomplished by an external source; before actually outsourcing it to an external organization. An organization can gain an opportunity for swapping terminated procedures with a freshly developed procedure by entering into a union with other organization that will help it to establish its redefined objectives in a healthier way. Even a less effective IT setup can provide and opening for technology change. Today, it has become a necessity for large number of organizations to reconstruct their major arrangements, but they should build them to back up adequate and superior procedures.

Change in technology can also be a result of the requirement for improved synchronization and administration of the interdependent functions of the organization. Enhanced harmonization of functions of production with functions of publicizing and sales will permit an organization to manufacture or produce goods and services that guarantee of persuading its customers to accept them. Successful implementation of a high notch of interdependence fundamentally requires both, readiness to hunt for different occasions to innovate and adoption of a procedure that will simplify the execution of cross functional solutions. And this can be done only by Radical innovation as Incremental innovation cannot change the prevailing methodologies for fulfilling user demands that are highly based on independent functionality.(Neely and Hii, 1998; Tidd and Bessant, 2009)

Another important motivation for organization to bring change in technology would be the suitability of the technology to their aspirations for growth and expansion. Though, organization would be efficient in solving their fiscal complications and fulfill the demands of their customers by the medium of Incremental changes, they aspire for bringing game changing innovation. Possibly, what organizations require is an approach that provides them an appropriate blend of opportunities for conducting Radical and Incremental Innovation. (Tidd and Bessant, 2009)