The effects of using big data in furniture manufacturing SMEs

Lawrance Seseni, Charles Mbohwa

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


The aim of this paper is to examine if furniture manufacturing SMEs are using or ready using Big Data analysis. This study reviewed the benefits of using Big Data in SMEs, particularly the furniture manufacturing enterprises, the challenges that are faced by enterprises when operating their enterprises and dealing with Big Data. This study adopted a mixed method where two methods have been used (quantitative and quantitative) by means of issuing 117 participants where each person per enterprise was given each questionnaire to fill out. To check if the results are reliable, SPSS was used to analyse the data and Cronbach's Alpha that is sitting on .849 and Cronbach's Alpha Based on Standardized Items is .865. The study also used observations. This study found that it is possible for furniture manufacturing SMEs to use Big Data in their enterprises, however, it is very expensive and requires the technical expertise of using techniques that mine, store and analyse data. Furthermore, enterprises will be able to make decisions that are guided by evidence. This will help the enterprise to be pro-active, gain competitive urge over their customers and they will improve their profitability. This study contributes to the field of Big Data in furniture manufacturing SMEs as it is the first study to be conducted in South Africa that tackles this problem. Future study will include other manufacturing SMEs from other major cities within South Africa. This will strengthen the findings. This will help identify if enterprises face the same problem when dealing with Big Data in their enterprises.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1404-1412
Number of pages9
JournalProceedings of the International Conference on Industrial Engineering and Operations Management
Issue numberSEP
Publication statusPublished - 2018
Event3rd North American IEOM Conference. IEOM 2018 -
Duration: 27 Sept 201829 Sept 2018


  • Big data
  • Furniture manufacturing
  • Gross domestic product
  • SMEs

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Strategy and Management
  • Management Science and Operations Research
  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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