UK businesses are failing to take advantage of the Internet, while corporations are growing ever more reliant on intranets.
These are the findings of two reports into technology in UK businesses published last week. One, The Internet - clouding the customer service issue, was commissioned by Intelligent Environments among 600 UK organisations from the Times Top 1000 companies.
This report found that only a quarter of businesses believe the Internet can help improve customer service. Although a third of respondents believe the Internet has taken off as a business tool, almost half do not think it will do so for another two years. One in 10 have no plans to conduct business on the Internet at all, and of the two-thirds that do have a web site, almost 80% are using them as static advertising billboards.
A separate survey from IT services group CMG discovered that corporate intranets are becoming increasingly popular. Almost half the 250 companies canvassed had already set up an intranet, while most without one blamed the lack on a poor understanding of the technology.
However, intranets tend to be confined exclusively to internal use. Almost three quarters said their external suppliers, partners and customers do not have access to the system, showing that the much-hyped concept of the extranet has failed to catch on.
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