ICT as a new competitive advantage factor – case of small transitional hotel sector

Tanja Mihalic, Dimitrios Buhalis

Abstract


This paper studies the information and communication technology (ICT) in a small hotel sector at a point in time when the transition towards a full market economy is coming to the end and competitiveness and ICT implementation is gaining on importance. Its main purpose is to study a business potential of this new competitive advantage resource and its productivity paradox. A competitive advantage factor model (CAF model) has been proposed and the structural modelling (SEM) has been performed on the case of a small transitional Slovenian hotel sector. The study contributes to knowledge on ICT competiveness and ICT productivity paradox in hotel sector. Further, its results hold practical implications for the strategy for hotels operating in small-sized hotel industries in transitional or ICT developing environments. In more concrete terms, research findings indicate that such hotel sectors need to speed the ICT implementation. ICT as such doesn’t directly increase the firm’s profitability, yet there is an indirect positive impact of factor ICT on a firm’s financial performance that emerges through other competitiveness factors, such as differentiation, quality or image, which helps firms to stay competitive on the tourism markets.


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