Title: Examining the push factors for adoption of automation in a Malaysian manufacturing SME

Authors: A.K. Siti-Nabiha; N. Norfarah; I. Mohd Naim Afifi

Addresses: Graduate School of Business, Universiti Sains Malaysia, Penang, Malaysia ' Graduate School of Business, Universiti Sains Malaysia, Penang, Malaysia ' Graduate School of Business, Universiti Sains Malaysia, Penang, Malaysia

Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to examine the push factors for the adoption of automation technologies in a manufacturing small and medium enterprise (SME). A case study method is used to address the research questions with data collected from interviews with the key people in the organisation, a documentary review and observations of the company production processes. The Technology, Organisation and Environment (TOE) model in which the technological, organisational and environmental aspects define the process of technology adoption is used to analyse the data. The results show that the production process in the SME is semi-automatic and labour intensive. Although the staff lacks knowledge and expertise of technological trends, the top management is committed to change and innovation, and the staff's awareness of the cultural change that is required acted as a push factor for automation. The other factors that pushed the technological advancement in the production process was the need to optimise the production process for manufacturing flexibility, address the waste and quality issues faced by the company and meet customers' demands for customisation and quality products so as to ensure the sustainability of the company.

Keywords: SME manufacturing; automation adoption; drivers for adoption; Malaysia.

DOI: 10.1504/WREMSD.2020.10032805

World Review of Entrepreneurship, Management and Sustainable Development, 2020 Vol.16 No.5, pp.557 - 572

Received: 16 Nov 2019
Accepted: 05 Jul 2020

Published online: 20 Oct 2020 *

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