Empowering Qatar’s SMEs using cloud technology
Leveraging technologies like the cloud could help small and medium businesses in Qatar increase their potential for growth into other markets, says Göksel Topbas, a Microsoft expert.
Now is the time to support local entrepreneurship. As the population continues to grow, the economic future of the region depends on our ability to battle common problems like rising unemployment and a lack of capital funds to support local businesses. We must help young companies lead the way and contribute to the country’s overall economic growth with their ideas and energy.
Large corporations may get much of the attention, but it is small and medium businesses that are behind some of the most exciting contributions to economic growth, job creation and innovation. After all, every business starts off small.
According to recent IDC research, small and medium enterprises (SMEs) constitute over 99 percent of all companies in the Middle East, Africa and Turkey region. However, they contribute to only about 30 percent of the total information technology (IT) spend. IT maturity among SME organisations is low, and IT infrastructure relatively weak. The more progressive SMEs, however, see IT as an enabler to address these challenges and capture new opportunities. As a result, IT spending among these businesses is expected to grow strongly over the coming years. Emerging technology paradigms such as cloud and mobility will enable SMEs ramp up or scale down with business and leapfrog technology generations to access cost-effective resources that will make them highly competitive, even against larger enterprises.
IT maturity among SMEs is low, but the more progressive SMEs see IT as an enabler to capture new opportunities.
The business world in which we operate in is truly global, with businesses no longer confined to operate within their geographical boundaries. SMEs nowadays compete on the global stage, where more established companies are harnessing technology trends such as cloud computing, big data, and mobility.
I recently met with a number of SME customers in Qatar who have improved productivity and become more responsive to their customers since they adopted cloud-based solutions into their business. One such customer was able to gain constant access to his customer information by storing it in the cloud, helping the company to issue orders more smoothly and quickly, and further grow their business.
Small businesses in Qatar need IT tools and resources to grow and establish themselves in the same way, so they can increase profitability and move into new markets. Industry partners have the resources and commitment to make SMEs more competitive in the marketplace by providing enterprise-grade solutions that level the playing field between SMEs and enterprises.
See below an Infographic based on a global survey conducted by Microsoft: