Can SMEs Break the Shackles?
India is at the growth trajectory and our stakes are high, the next level of growth is expected to come from SMEs thereby making them intrinsic to the success of ‘Make in India’, the much envisaged program by our prime-minister. Just to take a stock of how important it is for the Indian growth story – currently, around 48Mn SMEs employ close to 101Mn workforce and contribute around 17% to the GDP. Now the onus is on the businesses to take advantage of such programs, which they can much easily if they are technology ready.
Technology is the Key
The propulsion for SMEs to DO MORE can only come through appropriate use of technology where communication plays an important role. At Connect, we understand that SMEs are strapped for ICT skill-sets, have their own set of challenges and require customized care. This is very much evident since only 12% SME’s use PC and 90% just use them for document processing and communications.
Internet to propel Growth
The need and realization to automate the processes that can increase their effectiveness and efficiency is absent in many cases. Just to substantiate the case in point, the revenues of the SMEs that use internet are 1.5 times of those that do not. SMEs that use internet have 51% higher revenues score 49% higher profits and have 7% more customers than their peers who do not use technology. This is contrary to the popular belief that technology draws heavy investment since return on investments is actually multi-fold.
Easier to use cost-effective technology
In fact, it has never been so much easier for SMEs to adopt and deploy technology while they can continue to focus on their core competence. The pay-per-use model that has become prominent allows companies to choose specific solutions based on their need rather than buying the whole set. Other than reducing the Capex and Opex stress on companies the cloud based solutions are highly scalable and less prone to risk and investments.
Right technology provides strong competitive advantage to SMEs and takes care of upcoming fused work trends like ‘remote working’ and ‘bring-your-own-device (BYOD)’ that makes it mandatory for them to consider the apt technological solutions. Even the more conventional side-of-tech in business (like voice and data) are now offered with usage based model. Talking more specifically of communication provision, SMEs can leverage the facilities like Centrex, Tele Meet or Toll free services to take care of their everyday load. This not only takes away the need for equipment and dedicated manpower but give them image makeover. Other than taking the functional advantage out of such services, small and medium businesses are able to focus on their growth.
There is a way to go
Such small initiatives and investments in functional technology with the trusted service provider can give exponential benefits and confidence to the companies. The need of the hour is to start considering technology as an investment and not cost. It’s high time that small and medium businesses take the cognizance of the innovative disruptions that were driven by the technology e.g. e-commerce. The choice is with the SMEs whether they want to change or be a part of change, being on the other side is not an option any more.