KUALA LUMPUR: Digital transformation is no longer a choice but an imperative for small and medium enterprises (SMEs), especially after the movement control order, say panellists at the recent Inspired by Celcom Business webinar.
The second webinar in the series, themed Kickstart Your Digital Journey to Capture Immediate Opportunities, featured Multimedia University (MMU) Business School director Professor Dr Murali Raman, Acestar Sdn Bhd chief executive officer Natalie Sit and Aspirasi (Axiata Digital Capital) sales, business development and operations regional director Ankur Jakhwal.
Moderating the session was DoctorOnCall co-founder Hazwan Najib.
The webinar, aimed at providing insights and best practices to businesses on adapting to the new normal, saw panellists sharing their views to help businesses embark on digital adoption for quick wins, business recovery as well as sustainability.
“We are becoming accustomed to this new way of operating, or what we call as the new normal. Therefore, it is high time for businesses to equip themselves and their businesses with the appropriate resources to manage operations remotely with little to no disruption at all, ” said Axiata Business chief enterprise business officer Azlan Zainal Abidin in his opening address.
The past few months have hastened the pace of digitalisation and taken SMEs ten years ahead in technology adoption, said Ankur.
He shared, “It’s key for SMEs who have not thought about their digital journey to start thinking and investing now.
“Leverage government programmes that are offered. These cover all aspects of digitalisation, the aspects that SMEs need to focus on to keep them surviving and move them to the next level.”
For Acestar’s Sit, SMEs tend to fear change when it comes to technology adoption because of fear.
To combat that fear, she said businesses need to understand digital transformation and the difference between digitisation and digitalisation.
“Digitisation is the process of converting analog or physical processes to digital, while digitalisation is different. Digitalisation is when this process is leveraged to improve business processes or operations.
“Both digitisation and digitalisation are a part of digital transformation, ” she stressed.
As for MMU’s Murali, to embark on digital transformation, businesses still need to go back to basics: product, process, platforms, as well as people and leadership.
He explained, “First, look at the core value proposition of the product. What is the core value proposition? From there, look into the process and how you’re integrating technology into all aspects of the business.
“Then use business-to-business platforms or marketplaces, leverage them to offer value and fill a gap in the market. And then the people leading the business must be hungry for success, with the mindset of a leader who is visionary.”
The Inspired by Celcom Business free live webinar series is organised by Celcom Business, in partnership with Star Media Group.
The Inspired by Celcom Business webinar series, which is aimed at enriching the knowledge and capacity of the business community, is part of Celcom and its parent company Axiata Group Bhd’s (Axiata) digitalisation push to accelerate digital adoption across Malaysian SMEs.Moreover, Celcom and Axiata have also launched an RM150mil financial assistance programme called Aspirasi, which delivers artificial intelligence-driven micro-financing and micro-insurance solutions to assist the SME community.
To learn more on Celcom Business Solutions for SMEs, visit www.celcom.com.my/business/products/solutions/sme-reimagined.
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