Developing Digitalization Strategies for SMEs: A Lightweight Architecture-based Method

Research output: Contributions to collected editions/worksArticle in conference proceedingsResearchpeer-review


Like larger companies, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) need to develop and implement digitalization strategies. These help to address necessary organizational- and technology-related changes in order to create competitive advantages. However, SMEs often face specific challenges, including a lack of IT know-how, relevant market information and appropriate methods for developing a strategy. In this paper, we present a lightweight, architecture-based method including its underlying model for the development and implementation of digitalization strategies in SMEs. It was developed by following the Action Design Research (ADR) method and in cooperation with two medium-sized companies. Rather than adopting highly abstract and complex enterprise architecture (EA) frameworks, we suggest creating easy-to-use visualizations of the enterprise architecture, the business ecosystem and related cross-layer dependencies. While transferring the discipline of EA into the context of digital entrepreneurship, we derived four design principles which help to enrich the theoretical body of knowledge in this research area.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 55th Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences : January 3-7, 2022
EditorsTung X. Bui
Number of pages10
Place of PublicationHonolulu
PublisherHICSS Conference Office
Publication date01.01.2022
ISBN (Electronic)978-0-9981331-5-7
Publication statusPublished - 01.01.2022
Event55th Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences - online, Honolulu, United States
Duration: 03.01.202207.01.2022
Conference number: 55

Bibliographical note

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    Research areas

  • Business informatics - Making Digital Transformation Real, digital entrepreneurship, Digitalization strategy, digital transformation, enterprise architecture, small and medium-sized enterprises