Innovative Characteristics of Small and Medium Enterprises
Keywords:innovation, SMEs, Italy, manufacturing industry
AbstractThe purpose of the paper is to investigate the technological innovative characteristics in the Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) belonging to the Italian manufacturing sector. A survey based on e-mail and fax questionnaire of 285 SMEs was conducted with a response rate of about 45%. On the basis of this survey, the innovative profile of SMEs has been highlighted as well as the factors and problems of innovative process analyzed. The methodology consisted in a descriptive analysis on general data and in a discriminant analysis on data related to the innovative activity and aimed at determine the factors distinguishing more and less innovative companies. The results show that innovative firms are market anticipation and customer focus, point to product enrichment in terms of different characteristics in respect to competitors’ products in order to obtain a superior product in terms of quality. Innovation results to be part of their business strategy and is based more around developing new ways of working than new product innovations.
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