3.2.2 National cluster management concepts

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1 2CE132P1 - CNCB National cluster management concepts Work Package WP3 Cluster management Action Author PP08 + PP09 - Elena Stieranková, Peter Filo Version Date Status final version X date 1 / 12

2 Document Approval Chronology Document Revision / Approval Version Date Status Date Status draft final 2 / 12

3 Methodology applied...4 Basic data about the participating Slovak clusters...4 Results for the on-line survey on cluster management...6 Results of in-depth interviews on cluster management...9 Conclusions / 12

4 (!") * +,-..* # (CNCB) following three main issues of common interest form the core of the project: (WP3), (WP4) and (WP5). is focused on analysing of of %&'#. Transnational tailored to their specific needs. $ project focuses on further development of cluster initiatives in Central Europe, concretely in the partner regions of Austria, Czech Republic, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Slovakia and Slovenia represented by 10 partners. The # involved cluster mangers and cluster management 34 / training course is going to be elaborated and training institutions identified in order to provide cluster managers in Europe with education The analysis of the Slovak clusters was done as a part of cluster analysis conducted in partners regions in Austria, Czech Republic, Hungary, Italy, Poland and Slovenia in February and March The research has been done in two steps in accordance with the Methodological guide of the CNCB project. As a first step a covering three focus areas cluster management, optimisation and internationalisation was sent to all clusters in the participating regions. out of answered --7 and most ).- of the.- cluster +8* 9-: * 6 managers expressed 6 their availability for the which was the second step of the analysis. In total regions responded the survey and about 40 of them were involved in follow-up interviews that took place during April and June This National cluster management concept for Slovakia deals with follow subject: - Training for existing cluster management in the conceptual cluster strategy - Training for marketing strategy in cluster preparation of own products and their placement on market, preparation of own communication strategy to the partners - Information meetings and workshops for the groups of interest they would be ground a new cluster In total 19 Slovak clusters were asked to answer the questionnaire within the CNCB project. 10 clusters responded that means response rate almost 53 %. The clusters that answered the questionnaire are listed in the table below. 4 / 12

5 !" #$%!" 1 Balnea Cluster Dudince Dudince 2 Cluster LIPTOV Liptovský Mikuláš 3 Cluster of tourism West Slovakia Trnava '& ' 1 4 Automotive Cluster - West Slovakia Trnava 5 Cluster TURIEC (Association of legal entities in tourism) Martin % 1 6 Cluster Smolenice Smolenice 7 BITERAP Košice 8 The Union of Slovak Clusters Nitra 9 cluster Zilina 10 Cluster ORAVA - Association of legal entities Dolný Kubín ( ))* *+ ) '&' % The most represented technological/industrial area was with 60% (6 clusters) followed with 20% (2 clusters) and with 10% (1 cluster). One of the respondents - The Union of Slovak clusters does not match any of these areas as it is an association consisting of various Slovak clusters. Concerning the size, 80% of respondent clusters are having less than 25 members (8 clusters) and one respondent cluster have members. The Union of Slovak clusters as the last respondent should not be taken into consideration because as mentioned above it is the association of clusters. Slovak clusters are mostly (82%) other sources of financing are EU subsidies (9%), regional subsidies (2%) and other sources (7%). 9% 2% 7% Membership fee EU subsidize 82% National subsidize Regional subsidize Other 5 / 12

6 ( ) * ) Slovak clusters are 1&& ; 80% average year of establishment is of them are established within last 2 years ( ); the & 6 * 6 ) * 6 9, * The aim of the cluster management part of the questionnaire survey was to find out t. Cluster 10% 20% 10% % 2010 % 40% managers were also asked to shortly describe the training already attended by them in the past and their experience in order to find best practices in this area. Most of the respondent clusters expressed their (70%), two clusters answered that they would be interested in the future (20%) and only one cluster is not interested in training at all. This result shows that Slovak cluster managers understand that high quality cluster management is important to ensure the development and growth of clusters and they would like to improve their skills. Identical high interest in training was shown by all involved clusters from Central Europe countries since 57% of them stated that they are interested in training immediately and 37% will be interested in the future. 6 / 12

7 ( ) * **+ 1-. /023)4*5/67* 8969:* ;-.,-. )*+ ( ) * **+ 1 followed training for clusters as it ranked first also among all respondent clusters in the survey. 4 3,5 3 2,5! # $ 2 % & & ' ( # 1,5 1 0,5 0 When asked to specify the fields of training they are interested in the Slovak clusters expressed by marketing and PR, project management, team management and IT skills. Little interest is shown in micro and macro economics and in quality and environment management. Innovation management seems to be the most important and desired " 7 / 12

8 provided ( ** ) * **+ 1 The most important aspects of training are to have by. with Clusters are not interested in academic trainers. 4 3,5 3 2,5 2 1,5 Although the managers of Slovak clusters are very interested in training as already mentioned above they of clusters managers stated that they have no budget for improving their qualification at all. This may be caused by the fact that Slovak clusters that are mostly financed by membership fees have tight budgets and they prefer financing of other activities to 1 0,5 ( + ) **+ ) ' 0 "*++673/!--# 20:*67*/;---# the have available $$. ;;. 0/*!. is 1&, 45% training. None Less than More then / 12

9 % Managers 6 * 6. of the Slovak ) clusters 9 have 6 * 6 very - -+ related to their profession; half of them have never attended any courses focused on increasing of skills necessary for successful cluster management. Those who took part in some training stated that the training was focused on management issues like leadership, project management and marketing, issues related to their specific industry or technology and one cluster manager took training in communication and event organization. These trainings were mostly provided by local or cluster training institute or consulting company and were free of charge financed by the European funds. % ' Involvement of the Slovak clusters in projects or programmes dedicated to cluster development or cluster staff qualification is very low as only 3 clusters out of 10 stated that they have been involved in such projects/programmes. * * * + '%%1 '!" #$%!" Five managers of Slovak clusters have been interviewed in order to supplement the results of the questionnaire survey in cluster management. Three clusters were service oriented (tourism and wellness) one industrial (automotive) and the last interviewed one was the Union of Slovak clusters. The interviews have been done in the form of structured discussion with a list of questions beforehand. 1 Balnea Cluster Dudince Dudince 2 Automotive Cluster - West Slovakia Trnava 3 Cluster TURIEC (Association of legal entities in tourism) Martin 4 Cluster ORAVA - Association of legal entities Dolný Kubín 5 The Union of Slovak Clusters Nitra % 1 The managers of Slovak cluster have mainly university degree (4 managers out of 5) and their main field of education is economy (3 managers), marketing communication (1 manager) and engineering (1 manager). They used to work in various professions mainly in private sector (marketing manager, financial manager, controller and so on). Most of them have started working as cluster managers two years ago (2008) which is the average year of establishment of Slovak clusters. They mostly see their future professional development in clusters but some of them conditioned this by development of Slovak cluster policy and support of clusters at the national level as necessary conditions for sustainable development of clusters in Slovakia. Four Slovak cluster managers out of five consider as they need at their work. Ability to communicate to the members, partners and clients was also referred as a strong point by most of the managers. Among other important skills were mentioned 9 / 12

10 ( * + * language and organisational skills, financial and project management and empathy. Surprisingly innovation management was not mentioned in the interviews although it was ranked as the most important skill by Slovak clusters as well as by all respondent clusters in the questionnaire survey. It is possible that management of innovation is more desired skill of cluster managers because of their understanding of its importance and it is not that relevant in day-to-day management of Slovak clusters at the moment. 10% 10% communication skills 40% language skills coordination, organizational skills 10% financial management, planning ( * ) + project management 20% 10% empathy Among day-to-day duties of the Slovak cluster managers belong communication with members and partners, meetings, planning of cluster activities and new services for clients, organising of events, marketing, preparing presentations, administration, ing and the like. Foreign language is used by the Slovak cluster managers almost every day when communicating with partners. English language is used the most but also German, Russian and Hungarian language is sometimes applied. 19% 13% communication with members and 24% partners meetings planning of activities and new services marketing, preparing presentations 13% 13% 18% organizing events administration, ing / 12

11 When it comes to the weak points of the Slovak cluster managers they stated they are not good enough in time, financial and strategic management and in management of innovation. They express their wish to improve their skill in these areas but they are also interested in project management and transfer of know-how and experience from well developed clusters abroad. Although the Slovak cluster managers would like to improve their skills they stated that their % 1&. Only one manager said that regional public administration provided free training for cluster facilitators before the cluster was established. Own ' 1 1&and vary from 0 to 2000 EUR per year, in one case 6000 EUR. Cluster managers said that this budget is not sufficient but they cannot * 6 6 afford to set aside more finances. In most cases 1 week per year can be scheduled for educational activities of cluster manager. Managers of the Slovak clusters confirmed little experience with training related to their profession as resulted from questionnaire survey. Those who took part in some training stated that the training was focused on management issues like financial or project management (e.g. 7 th Framework Programme), cluster facilitating and communication and event organization. These trainings were provided by university, development agency or external experts and were free of charge co-financed by the European funds. Cluster managers were satisfied with the trainings they appreciated practical approach of the lecturers. Training structure 1. Training for existing cluster management in the conceptual cluster strategy Two times 2-days training of cluster managers divided in the analytical and conceptual stage separately for the industry and tourism cluster group 2. Training for marketing strategy in cluster preparation of own products and their placement on market, preparation of own communication strategy to the partners Two times 2-days training of cluster managers divided in the analytical and conceptual stage separately for the industry and tourism cluster group 3. Information meetings and workshops for the groups of interest they would be ground a new cluster 1-day information meeting toward with the potential partner in once region and industry segment 11 / 12

12 Training contents 1. Training for existing cluster management in the conceptual cluster strategy - SWOT analyse of existing cluster activity and their impact for cluster members - Preparation on the innovation cluster strategy - Preparation on the implementation plan for the new cluster strategy - Controlling system for the evaluation of the innovation strategy 2. Training for marketing strategy in cluster preparation of own products and their placement on market, preparation of own communication strategy to the partners - SWOT analyse of existing marketing mix and activity and their impact for cluster members - Preparation on the innovation marketing strategy - Preparation on the implementation plan for the new marketing strategy - Controlling system for the evaluation of the innovation marketing strategy 3. Information meetings and workshops for the groups of interest they would be ground a new cluster - Dividing the interest to the 2 groups industry and tourism - Information meeting for the tourism group by the act # 91/2010 with the experts and experience from other existing tourism cluster include the competent academics organisations - Information meeting for the industry group with the experts and experience from other existing tourism cluster include the competent academics organisations 12 / 12

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