By Vipul Agarwal, Start-up mentor, Serial investor, and Consultant. Head of Tringo Solutions India Pvt ltd
In the last few decades, technology has transformed many economies globally. Indian companies too, especially the start-up ecosystem, have been nourished with the advent of technology and have given rise to more evolved business processes. From Logistics, Accounts, Marketing and even team performance and HR have all been supported by technology these days, and the trend seems to be just catching up! With the new decade and the rising popularity of once eccentric technologies like AI, IoT, and ML, its interesting to watch the changing face of Indian SME’s and Start-ups! Here are some key technology trends that are set to drive the sector:
Software as a Service
Software as a Service (SaaS) benefactions has increased in size to cover human resource, accounting, billing, attainment, customer relationship management (CRM), enterprise resource planning (ERP) and Business intelligence (BI). SME’s now have an array of hosted services at their conveyance. This trend is in line with the overall shift among millennial entrepreneurs to focus on their core strengths and seek professional service providers to manage ancillary processes to. SaaS has been a preferred model for this and thus, is expected to not just stay, but expand further.
Cloud Storage and operations
Data is the currency of the digital era and cloud storage is the reliable safe vault! With the digitization of business, more and more SMEs are adopting cloud storage to leverage its features for efficient CRM, Operations and for enabling secure transactions. That cloud services are becoming increasingly agile, budget-friendly and easy to access across the realms of time and geography, is an added advantage that is going to ensure this trend stays in fashion for the coming decade.
With restricted capital, the smart method to get the work done is automation. What most SME’s believe is that improving customer experience is their top priority and strategy for augmenting revenue growth. And chatbots are helping them do just that! While some argue that this takes away from personalization, leveraging smart AI tools has helped SME’s not only doing well in their business by saving on resources, it has also made them more relatable and aspirational in the eyes of their customers, who are seeking innovative technology solutions.
Social media for marketing
A marketing report says that 96 percent of SME’s are using social media in their marketing master plan. Social media platforms such as Facebook are doing fabulous for them in terms of Facebook Ads and reach. Social Media has also become a place to explore and know the competitors, which will make it easy to make business plans more strategic. It’s also a platform to gauge instant consumer feedback and assess the success or predict the future of a new product or service. With the help of Social media small scale entrepreneurs are also able to share their ideas and seek support or guidance from other entrepreneurs and mentors, which help them explore new areas.
The Indian start-up and SME ecosystem continues to seek cost effective and efficient methods to innovate business processes, even as new innovations in technology hit the market almost every day. Like everything else, technology has become an essential barometer for business success and not adapting to the new age processes is a sure shot way to perish, in the 21st century.