Adoption of mobile computing for ubiquitous data management within sugar companies in Kenya
Ndukuyu, Arnold C
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Mobile Computing provide users with greater opportunity to manage data and access information and services stored on the Internet and central repositories, regardless of users’ physical locations and movement behaviours. Field officers in sugar companies spend more than 50% of their time in the field, have their appropriateness of mobile computing in their working. However, field operations and services often experience extensive delays or rework due to information that is unavailable, inaccurate or out dated as a result of manual processes thus leading to production inefficiencies. This study proposed to explore the extend of adoption of mobile technologies for ubiquitous Data Management within Sugar companies in Kenya. This was achieved through determining usability of mobile computing technologies, establishment of utilization of mobile data management, assessing challenges affecting adoption of mobile computing for ubiquitous data management and eventually proposing an optimum strategy for use of mobile computing for ubiquitous data management within sugar companies in Kenya. The study employed largely descriptive survey design. The target population consisted of ten strategy managers, 1179 extension officers, 30 ICT business systems managers and 500 active system users. The Study sample of 325 workers from the sugar companies in Kenya comprising of 240 extension officer, 2 strategy managers, 6 business system managers and 40 system active users. Extension officers and system active users were selected using simple random sampling technique, strategy managers and business system managers were selected using saturated sampling technique. To ensure face and content validity of the research instruments ICT experts in software development firms, Oracle, Amity and EIM were consulted. Pilot study was conducted on 15 workers from the sugar companies who did not participate in the study and Pearson product moment correlation coefficient was used to determine the reliability of the questionnaires at alpha level of signifance of 0.05 both qualitative and quantitative data was collected and analysed. Quantitative data was analysed using descriptive statistics, correlation and regression analysis while qualitative data was analysed thematically. The study found out that; network capability, security, data and service portability and policy formulation ranked top as critical elements in an enterprise mobility framework. The study established that through a majority of workers at 76.92% agree that mobile technology is being used for data management, 56.98% indicated that they do not rely on mobile technology for data management. The study also found out that though 74.18% of workers agree that business operations in sugar companies depend on mobile technologies for data management, 87.36% of the workers undertake transactions using desktop computers and not mobile devices. However, 93.41% of the workers appreciate mobile computing as effective for data management. It was also found out that management support for mobile computing was not significant. The study further established that mobile computing adoption was hindered in the sugar industry by inadequate technological infrastructure and concerns about security of information. The study developed a framework for adoption of mobile computing for ubiquitous data management in sugar companies in Kenya. developed framework if used can help companies improve on their operational and production efficiency. The findings of the study are also critical for policy makers on enterprise mobility and integration with IT governance. The study concludes that adoption of mobile computing strategies affected profitability of companies positively.
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