RealTime IT News

Study Compares E-Business Challenges for Canadian, U.S. Companies

[Toronto, CANADA] Canadian companies are more likely to experience problems managing the e-business effort, while U.S. companies are finding it more difficult to recruit e-business talent, according to a recent study by Hewitt Associates.

Results from the survey of more than 130 North American companies show that almost two-thirds of Canadian and U.S. respondents believe their e-business activities are behind non-traditional competitors, such as dot.coms -- and both countries cite people as one of the main reasons.

Sixty-two percent of the Canadian companies and 61 percent of the U.S. companies said people are among their top challenges to achieving e-business success, with organizational commitment cited at about the same rate.

But a closer look reveals differences between Canadian and American companies.

While "finding talent for e-business activities" ranks in the top 3, people-related challenges for 40 percent of U.S. companies, only 13 percent of Canadian companies agree.

Fifty-six percent of the Canadian respondents say their big problem is "managing who's governing the e-business efforts and how." Only 33 percent of U.S. companies agree.

Twenty-six percent of companies in both countries report that keeping e-business talent ranks as one of their top three people-related challenges.

"Motivating and engaging employees is consistently important across any border in any industry," said Roger Duguay, responsible for Hewitt's e-business strategy in Canada.

"This is particularly true in the case of companies trying to transform into e-businesses. It's crucial for an organization to align its culture with its e-business environment for employees to remain engaged."

Hewitt Associates is a global management consulting firm specializing in human resource solutions. With 1999 revenues of nearly US $1.1 billion, the firm is ranked among the Top 200 of Forbes magazine's listing of the largest private companies.

Copies of the survey findings are available from Linda Bellario at Hewitt Associates.