Academy of Strategic Management Journal (Print ISSN: 1544-1458; Online ISSN: 1939-6104)


Dynamic Digital Capabilities and Competitiveness of Small Firms in Nigeria

Author(s): Emmanuel T. Emielu, Rowland E. Worlu, Chinonye L. Moses, Emmanuel E. Okoh

This study investigated how digital capabilities enable the competitiveness of Nigerian corporate training firms. Competing in the digital era is considered challenging due to the rapid pace of technological and environmental disruptions, which is now made worse by the consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic. New insights are called for and research in this area is still sparse, especially with regards to small business organizations. Data from a survey of 373 CEOs of oil and gas training firms were analysed using IBM SPSS 25 and Partial Least Squares 3.0. From the findings, significant positive associations were found between digital sensing capability and competitive intelligence (β=0.879, R2=0.772, t=23.711>1.96, p=0.000 <0.05); digital seizing capability and distinctive competence (β=0.858, R2=0.736, t=15.541>1.96, p=0.000 <0.05); and digital reconfiguration capability and innovativeness (β=0.884, R2=0.781, t=24.406>1.96, P=0.000<0.05). Therefore, the study concludes that digital capabilities are vital for competitiveness of corporate training firms. With the trend towards online delivery, training firms can respond to competition by building and deploying digital sensing, seizing, and reconfiguration capabilities. To be more competitive, training firms and SMEs in general, should consider digitalizing efforts at leveraging competitive intelligence, building distinctive competence, and seeking external collaborations to boost innovativeness. This study advanced evidence for the role of dynamic digital capabilities to achieve success with digital business transformation. It further provided an empirical model for small businesses that wish to build digital capabilities for sustainable advantage.

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