Improving SME's Capacity through Learning and New Technologies

Ileana Hamburg
2014 International Journal of Education and Practice  
Economic pressure and other pressure issues faced by small and medium sized companies (SMEs) require continuous improving of their capacities, of staff knowledge, of training and learning to survive or stay competitive. This issue is at the top of European, national and regional policies. But due to limited resources, often managers reduce learning activities and using new technologies in their companies. Blended learning is a suitable way to learn in SMEs to increase their efficiency, to keep
more » ... fficiency, to keep up competitiveness/surviving of the companies. Scenario-based learning is one method to be used in blended learning in order to improve learner engagement and problem understanding. Cloud computing is one of the emerging ICT trends in the past seven years. It has received much hype particularly in the past two years, with many companies considering the efficiency of cloud computing for their business, reduced costs, and easy access of data and particularly of new emerging ICT applications with little overhead. This paper contributes in the existing literature with results of interviews and case studies within projects aimed at problems of SMEs like suitable learning methods, advantages of cloud computing for SMEs efficiency and presents examples. The paper's primary contribution is finding that blended learning is a suitable form for increasing competitiveness of SMEs and could be used also by introducing cloud services which will change the landscape of business also in SMEs in the next years. The paper shows how European projects and cooperative work with participation of actors from different sectors can contribute to improving competitiveness and growth of SMEs
doi:10.18488/journal.61/2014.2.9/ fatcat:twesdlx7dvgtzblthv36npvklu