Purpose – The purpose of this article is to develop a configurational approach based on the TOE framework (technology, organization and environment) to understand the degree of implementation of I4.0 technologies in manufacturing small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). Specifically, the study considers technological infrastructure and competence, I4.0 integration capabilities, organizational agility and strategic flexibility, environmental dynamism and industry-specific forces as simultaneous pre-conditions for achieving an effective implementation of I4.0 technologies. Design/methodology/approach – This study uses the fuzzy-set qualitative comparative analysis (fsQCA) methodology as it allows for asymmetric and configurational-focused testing of proposition and sound theoretical development. In total, 305 responses were collected through a survey administered to SME managers in Europe and the United Kingdom (UK). Findings – The study examines the influence of technology, organizational and environmental aspects on I4.0 technologies implementation in SMEs. High I4.0 degree of implementation is structured around 5 configurations, while other 4 configurations are related to low levels of I4.0 implementation. Originality/value – This study proposes a configurational approach for SMEs to become I4.0 ready and how they may successfully implement I4.0 technologies. Such findings represent an original and novel contribution to existing research, offering a broad view on the I4.0 implementation by manufacturing SMEs.

Exploring paths underlying Industry 4.0 implementation in manufacturing SMEs: a fuzzy-set qualitative comparative analysis

Marco Balzano
2023-01-01

Abstract

Purpose – The purpose of this article is to develop a configurational approach based on the TOE framework (technology, organization and environment) to understand the degree of implementation of I4.0 technologies in manufacturing small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). Specifically, the study considers technological infrastructure and competence, I4.0 integration capabilities, organizational agility and strategic flexibility, environmental dynamism and industry-specific forces as simultaneous pre-conditions for achieving an effective implementation of I4.0 technologies. Design/methodology/approach – This study uses the fuzzy-set qualitative comparative analysis (fsQCA) methodology as it allows for asymmetric and configurational-focused testing of proposition and sound theoretical development. In total, 305 responses were collected through a survey administered to SME managers in Europe and the United Kingdom (UK). Findings – The study examines the influence of technology, organizational and environmental aspects on I4.0 technologies implementation in SMEs. High I4.0 degree of implementation is structured around 5 configurations, while other 4 configurations are related to low levels of I4.0 implementation. Originality/value – This study proposes a configurational approach for SMEs to become I4.0 ready and how they may successfully implement I4.0 technologies. Such findings represent an original and novel contribution to existing research, offering a broad view on the I4.0 implementation by manufacturing SMEs.
2023
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/10278/5015841
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