ECONOMY

Greek firms shy about using Internet’s potential to the full

Although all of the 500 biggest Greek companies use the Internet, only one in five participate in electronic marketplaces or auctions, and as many conduct sales on the world wide web, a survey by the Athens Laboratory of Research in Marketing (A.LA.R.M.) of the Athens University of Economics and Business has found. The survey, conducted for the National Network of Research and Technology in the context of the E-business Forum, confirmed that among the 500 biggest enterprises in Greece, most use local area networks (LAN), websites and Intranet. However, there is little use of wireless LAN and videoconferencing. Seven out of 10 firms have full connectivity and most of them use the Internet on a daily basis. Seeking information as well as conducting transactions with banks and the state are the main reasons for using the Internet. Out of the companies sampled, 82.2 percent maintain their own website. Greek companies may be behind in e-sales, but the majority of their electronic transactions are made with consumers in Greece rather than with other companies (Business-to-business). About half of the companies perform online procurements. Special subject seminars for staff regarding new technologies and communications are conducted by seven out of 10 companies. The penetration of teleworking remains limited, applied by no more than two in 10 firms, with the views of company officials being divided. Finally, three out of five companies are aware of the Open Source Software, but only two out of five use it. Half of those who do not believe they will do so in the next five years.