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  ICT applications

E-commerce presents challenges, opportunities for business

Nguyen Thi Vien, owner of the Minh Tu enterprise in northern Hai Duong province, has spent a lot of money sending her staff to a computer training course in Hai Duong town and then to an internet course in Hanoi.

However, her enterprise still fails to apply IT in business management. As the owner of an enterprise, Ms Vien does not brouse web pages on the Internet to find information relating to her business. Even knowing that it is good to advertise her business on the Internet, she does not need to increase orders as her enterprise has a lot of orders from old clients. Each year, Minh Tu enterprise sells around 15,000-20,000 products and Ms Vien feels content with current trading.

According to economic experts, e-commerce has more than 1,300 applied fields. However, not all enterprises know how to exploit and apply IT in their businesses effectively. Many enterprises set up website because they want to show that they are not backward. Due to several limitations in knowledge and human resources, they find it difficult to maintain their websites.

For example, Vietnamese people feel happy when they know that there is a website for Bat Trang ceramic products, thus foreigners can access updated information on Vietnamese ceramic products. However, although the website has been in operation for two years, information about products has not been updated and its layout has not changed. Such websites reflect a situation of "Not good to keep, but too good to throw away".

Establishing websites - double edged sword

Nguyen Thi Thanh Tam, director of Linh Duong Ltd Company in Lao Cai province, has invested hundreds of millions of VND to establish a website. She carried out transactions on the Internet for several months and found that advertising on the Internet is much cheaper than other advertising methods. Thanks to applying technology in her business, orders sometimes double, especially on special occasions, such as New Year or fairs. Through the Internet, she expanded their business to many domestic and foreign provinces and cities. However, in the initial period, she found it difficult to tackle the problem of applying e-commerce. Using information technology in business is good, however, it is like a double-edged sword. To run a website needs a qualified and loyal administrator to maintain and keep business information secret.

Nguyen Dang Hung from the Vietnam E-Commerce Centre said e-commerce will change the trading methods of almost all economic activities. However, enterprises still lack knowledge and human resources in the field. In addition, they do not know how to establish and run websites.

VOV - (07/04/2005)

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