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Abstract

The ISO 9001:2015 certificate of quality is nowadays the most renowned quality standard in the world. Standardised quality has become an imperative competitive advantage on the market for all serious business organisations. The fluctuation of the number of certificates of quality indicates to what extent companies are willing to ensure the quality of their products and services to customers and clients, and how fast the domestic market is standardised and integrated into the global economy. This paper presents the results of two empirical studies. The first one focused on the analysis of the fluctuation in the number of ISO 9001:2015 certificates in the period from 2008 to 2018, while the second aimed to determine the satisfaction of leadership with the certificate. The study has shown that, during the observed period, the number of certificates of quality in Croatia fluctuated between – 18% and +22% annually. At the annual level, a certain number of companies lose their certificates or opt for decertification. For that reason, a study of the leadership’s level of satisfaction with the ISO 9001:2015 certificate was conducted using a sample of 296 certified business organisations. The study has proven that the leadership showed a high level of satisfaction with the certificate of quality and that they appreciate business organisations with certificates of quality. It demonstrates that the quality management certification has a bright future regardless of the annual fluctuation of the number of certificates.

Abstract

Numerous factors affect the rate of return that a financial institution earns. Some of these factors include external forces that shape earnings performance and internal elements found in each financial institution. Policy implications are determined by the type of explanation and should be taken seriously. This paper classifies determinants of bank profitability as well as reviews existing literature on bank performance. The second section of this study quantifies how external factors and internal determinants have influenced the profitability of EU banks. This paper constructs fixed-effect models and Ordinary Least Squares (OLS), which sheds new light on understanding various factors influencing how the EU banking industry performs. The observation period was from 2012 to 2019, and the findings revealed that EU bank profitability is influenced by both external macroeconomic environment and management decisions. The results of this study suggest that equity to assets ratio (EA), Gap ratio, and GDP have a positive impact on bank profitability, while the loan to assets ratio (LA) and the provision for loan losses to total loans ratio (PLL/TL) hurt EU bank profitability. The empirical findings are consistent with the expected results, although, they are different from those of studies that investigated the structure-performance relationship of EU banks because they found that market share and concentration have a positive effect on bank profitability.

Abstract

The analysis of the factors of corporate governance is divided into four thematic sections. In the first part corporate governance is defined as part of the broader economic context. The second part deals with the principles of corporate governance. In the third part, the relation between the index of corporate governance and individual indicators (an indicator of commitment, transparency, and disclosure, caring for partners, and control and audit) regarding ownership is defined. An analysis was undertaken for the countries of Central and Eastern Europe. A higher level of foreign ownership had a positive correlation with the corporate governance index. On the other hand, the correlation between state ownership and corporate governance index was not clear. The prevention of poor banking practices does not only lie in controlling functions, but also in the general corporate and risk-taking cultures, and the social perception of managerial roles, regardless of ownership structure.

Abstract

There is a growing gap between higher education systems and the needs and demands of the labor market. Many of today’s students will work at jobs that just have emerged or do not even exist yet. The “newcomers” will need both digital and social-emotional skills in the coming years. These new competencies will make the new generation of employees’ company goals. This article presents the results of the recent research about modern-day competencies to evaluate what exactly relevant companies’ expectations are, how students see their knowledge and value in future workplaces, and how academia is coping with this new demand. For this analysis, I have conducted deep interviews with applicable entities, namely companies from the car industry and from the field of security industries (cyber security, integrated camera surveillance, financial security) to see how Industry 4.0 shapes the competencies they expect from our students entering to the job market. Engineering students - by questionnaire -were also interviewed at the Óbuda University, to examine their views about the skills gained at the university and how these competencies helping them to apply for the right position in the job market. Although the competence list showed similarities in the expected skill sets, the order of them differs. While most companies are aiming to hire team players with creative problem solving and those are capable and willing to accept changes, the students’ observations showed that technical skills, expertise, and problem solving are the most important competencies for future employment. Based on all participants’ answers and additional research, we aim to involve international companies to take part in our higher education system more thoroughly either by widening the practical in-site education or by inviting them to our university for lecturing future engineers. Furthermore, new courses are introduced at our university, such as information security, humanitarian response management, rehabilitation environmental planning engineering or ergonomics and human factors specialization.

Abstract

Marketing segmentation is one of the key strategic elements in marketing planning that helps identifying key consumer groups and their characteristics and enables the adaptation of marketing strategies to different target consumers. The aim of this paper is paper aims to segment classic theatre audiences based on their attendance frequency and identify major socio-demographic characteristics of each segment. A self-completion questionnaire was developed upon analysis of previous studies and was distributed to the population in an area of about 50 km around Osijek. The research was conducted on a convenient sample, using an in-person method in two different intervals: in the first interval, research was conducted on young respondents (18-34), and in the second interval, research was conducted on adult respondents (age 35+). Altogether 1315 participants took part in the research. Statistical techniques of univariate analysis (frequency distribution and central tendency measures), ANOVA, and two-step cluster analysis were used.

The results of the study have identified six classic theatre segments: young theatre friends, young theatre acquaintances, young theatre strangers, adult theatre friends, adult theatre acquaintances, adult theatre strangers. Each segment is described in detail by their geographic (distance from the venue), demographic (age, income, marital status, education, employment) and psychographic characteristics (social activities, free time spending, and informing gathering about classic theatre offer) characteristics. The research results emphasized the differences in classic theatre audiences, which calls for continuous market segmentation in order to ensure timely recognition of consumer trends and changes in preferences. This would enable theatre management to adapt and implement adequate marketing initiatives and strategies.

Abstract

Demographic change is a complex phenomenon, but it has generally been accepted that having better employment opportunities and quality of jobs are among important factors that determine people’s mobility. The purpose of this paper is to test the relationship between the increase in the number of people living in urban areas and the job opportunities in these areas in Albania. In order to do so, we performed a statistical analysis of a dataset on labor force surveys for the time period of 2007-2013. Our findings confirmed a positive correlation between the increase of individuals living in a certain area and job opportunities for specialized occupations in that area; however, a significant relationship was not found when job opportunities in general, in general, were considered.

Abstract

The purpose of this article is to highlight the importance of investments into competencies. The identification of competencies should belong to the strategic goals of any socially responsible society. The right competencies are a crucial precondition for a functioning labour market in times of digitalisation and technological changes: for good economic performance as well as to ensure lifelong productive and inclusive individuals. Relevant skills and competencies should respond to labour market needs as well as to economic requirements. The approach to this study is linked to the practical deficiencies of ineffective competency management in Slovenia and its consequences. The methodology combines study of theoretical models and specific skill framework in selected countries with chosen policies. The findings confirm that educational paths in Slovenia are not aligned with the economy requirements. Competencies do not correspond to actual industrial policy priorities. The article identifies the reality of competency policy in Slovenia and governance gaps in comparison with EU and OECD countries. It focuses on foreseen skills challenges and skills forecasting needs. The article offers solutions and policies for better skills matching and further reflections on more co-ordination and governance between educational policies and competency requirements in the economy. One limitation of this study is the variety of policies in countries, hindering the transferability. Nevertheless, the article tackles skill and competency challenges, which are common in most of the countries and require actions.

Abstract

The aim of this paper is to identify and categorize the perceived risks that Hungarian consumers connect with online purchasing. The research is based on empirical data collected via a questionnaire and analysed with statistical software. The applied exploratory factor analysis identified five risk categories connected to online purchasing: perceived after-sale risk, perceived data security risk, perceived delivery risk, and perceived product risk. The fifth risk factor seems the most characteristic to Hungarian customers, who are wary of the possibility of online vendors selling fake products on the Internet. The results offer valuable information to companies engaged in online vending concerning the risk factors Hungarian consumers associate with online shopping. One limitation of this study is that it does not evaluate risk-reducing strategies.

Abstract

The development of Internet technology (IT) at the end of the 20th century and its integration into the business sector has led to the emergence of digital labour platforms that provoke a reorganization of work arrangements by matching the demand and supply of goods and services, known as the “gig economy”. The “gig economy” stands for economic activities or work arrangements related to the performance of very short-term tasks facilitated by digital platforms and can include freelance work, temporary work, work on-demand and contract work. Our paper focuses on the new, growing workforce of freelancers. Freelancers belong to the self-employed category of entrepreneurial activity who do not employ workers, who pay their own taxes, work on projects, work for several clients, and work remotely, usually from home. According to various sources and findings, they are also referred to as entrepreneurs, solopreneurs, digital micro-entrepreneurs, hybrids of employees and entrepreneurs, enablers of entrepreneurship, potential entrepreneurs, etc. The purpose of this paper is to examine the relationship between freelancers and entrepreneurs. The paper will use a literature-review approach to highlight the similarities and main differences between freelancers and entrepreneurs and to find an answer to the question whether freelancers can be considered entrepreneurs or not. In addition, the paper provides insights into freelance work and highlights the benefits and challenges that freelancers face in the labour market.