Assessment of the impact of technology management practices on the competitive advantage of Kuwaiti Textiles, clothing and leather industries
Technology has accelerated rapidly providing various opportunities for organizations to improve their efficiency, decrease their production time and sustain their competitive advantages. The decision makers try to apply the best practices in managing technology to assess their current operations and develop their strategies towards technology to compete in the market. This research aimed to assess the impact of technology management practices (TMPs) on the competitive advantage of Kuwaiti textiles, clothing and leather industries sector (TCLIS). The research relied on a designed questionnaire as a data collection tool. The sample included 16 companies from (TCLIS). The obtained data were analysed statistically by using SPSS and MS excel. The results showed that the overall perceived level of TMPs was 73%. The scores of TMPs are presented in descending order as follow: technology exploitation 80%, technology identification 77.6%, technology selection 74%, technology protection 67.6% and technology acquisition 66%. The results showed that the companies have a good skills and experiences in identifying their technological needs and when they utilizing new technology, they focus more on quality improvement, decreasing time of production, optimizing manufacturing ability and
increasing production accuracy. The results also showed that 75% of the companies don�t have research and development unit, they don�t allocate special percentage of the net profit for this unit and 53.7% of them prefer fully external acquisition. Also, the companies were asked about how they implement a value creating strategy to sustain competitive advantage through the following main factors: cost, quality and differentiation. The average level of competitive advantage was 82.7%. The results of their assessment for the factors in descending order as follow: cost 83.4%, quality 82.9% and differentiation 81.9%. The results revealed that there is a positive correlation between all TMPs. Also, there is a positive correlation between TMPs with competitive advantages elements: cost, quality, differentiation with coefficients of correlation 0.551, 0.525 and 0.598 respectively. This ensures that TMPs enhance the competitive advantage of the companies. The study recommends the companies to enhance the practicing of TMPs, establish and develop research and development units, allocate suitable budget to help them acquire their technology in effective way and develop clear mechanism to protect their technology.
Keywords- Technology Identification, Technology Selection, Technology Acquisition, Technology Exploitation, Technology Protection, Cost, Quality, Differentiation.