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Globalization, technological, social, and cultural progress as well as their consequent Fourth Industrial Revolution (IR4.0) shapes a specific environment for modern enterprises. IR4.0 imposes specific challenges and priorities on their behavior, because it creates the so-called SMART WORLD. This observation has raised the following question: How ready are SMEs to be SMART? The main purpose of this chapter is to identify at which stage of preparation for the SMART World are SMEs. The second purpose of the chapter is to identify if and how the size of the enterprise determines the effectiveness of its operation in the age of IR4.0. The studies are based on a literature review and they describe the requirements for organization functioning in the age of IR4.0, a review of international researches and the results of the author’s own research on the readiness of SMEs for the SMART World of IR4.0. The findings of the conducted research indicate that the tested SMEs operating in Poland, although increasingly aware of the benefits of the application of modern solutions, still have a too low level of knowledge concerning the requirements of the age of Industry4.0, possess average activity in terms of the use of tools specific to this age, and they are mostly halfway to the SMART world. Furthermore, the bigger the size of a company, the higher the level of readiness for operating in the age IR4.0. At various levels of organizational activity, we can see a growing need for technological, methodical, legal, financial, and social support for such activities.
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- SMEs on the Way to the Smart World of Industry 4.0