The white paper examines how digital technology and connectivity can help level the playing field for small businesses to compete with their larger counterparts by enabling SMEs to access new markets, reduce business costs, and improve efficiency and competitiveness.
The white paper is based on findings in the SME Landscape Report which was commissioned by the Adclick Africa Media Group. The survey, conducted by independent research consulting firm, In On Africa (IOA), surveyed 1157 South African SME owners in SME South Africa’s database.
Through the white paper, SME South Africa looks to increase the use of technology by SMEs and drive awareness and interest in technology products and/or services among South African small business owners.
Despite the transformative potential of technology, the SME Landscape Report notes that many SMEs in South Africa have not capitalised on technology to grow their businesses. In fact, South Africa’s small businesses are using outdated technology solutions rather than investing in innovative future technologies.
The white paper also explores the role of technology stakeholders in getting small business owners online.
Quoted in the white paper, Professor Barry Dwolatzky, founder and director of Wits University’s Joburg Centre for Software Engineering (JCSE), suggests that while technology products exist for small business owners, they may need some hand holding when making a purchase.
“Some of these offerings are free or appropriately priced. The problem, however, is that there are too many choices and very limited assistance in making the correct choice,” he says.
Gugu Mjadu, Executive General Manager: Marketing at Business Partners Limited, says there is a need to identify ways to support business owners, starting with providing cost effective and reliable [Internet] access wherever business owners are located.
Also quoted in the white paper is Luvuyo Rani, co-founder and MD of Silulo Ulutho Technologies.