The design of a competitive intelligence methodology framework
Kruger, Tjaart Ian Jacobus
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In today's highly competitive global business arena, companies require some type of formal Competitive Intelligence (CI) system to gather and analyse information about its competitors and the industry. These kinds of systems go hand-in-hand with information technology and software, and since CI software can be very expensive for smaller companies, this study's aim was to provide a design for a CI methodology framework that could serve as the basis for the development of a relatively inexpensive modular CI software system. Other considerations for the study was to develop a CI performance measurement model for the CI design, as well as to establish best practises for the implementation of a CI system in a company. An extensive literature study was performed to aid in the design of the CI system. An empirical study was performed to complement the design of a CI system in order to prove to companies that a formally structured CI programme is a necessity for a company to not only survive, but to excel in the competitive business arena. The empirical study attempted to meet the following research objectives: whether the success of a structured CI programme to improve the company's competitive performance can be measured; and whether the success of a structured CI programme to increase shareholder value can be measured. The key findings of the study were that there is evidence to suggest that there is a correlation between a high degree of structuring in CI and an increase in competitive performance, but that there was no conclusive evidence of a correlation between a high degree of structuring in CI and an increase in shareholder value.