Leveraging ICT organizational capability for SME competitiveness in the agricultural sector in Kenya
In today's global economy, successful SMEs need to take full advantage of technological advancements dealing with all aspects of their business models. SME must find some competitive advantage through the technological advancements that gives them an edge that their competitors cannot reproduce. The main objective of this study was to determine how SMEs can leverage ICT capability for greater competitiveness. The study used descriptive research design; this study established associations between variables. The population of the study consisted of SMEs in the Agricultural Sector in Uasin Gishu County .The population under study comprised all the 528 Agricultural SMEs within Uasin Gishu County. Primary data was obtained by using structured questionnaires. The respondents consisted of, SME owners, managers and employees. The study used descriptive and inferential statistics to analyze the data. The findings identified in this research paper shows that the access and use of ICT in Agri-business SMES has not been embraced by majority of the enterprises in Uasin Gishu County thereby indicating a low level of ICT use. Agri-business SMES also have expressed the weak financial capacity in investing in ICT structures and tools for better management of their business. The findings further shows that SMEs financial capacity is limited to the basic requirements of a business thus reason for high use of the mobile phone technology, that the level of knowledge on various ICT tools hinders use because most of SMEs have low level of literacy. The findings also show that although most of them are aware of their existence they do not think that such technologies are necessary for their businesses and that most of the SMEs in this study did not have appropriate ICT expertise to decide on which ICT to invest in and to implement the use of ICT. The study recommends that the Government should therefore make ICT more affordable and readily available to Agri-business SMEs, this can be done through Ministry of Information, Communication and Technology of Kenya who can initiate and support training programmes to develop the capacity of Agribusiness SMEs in Uasin Gishu County to embrace ICT and this will scale up productivity and increase production.