The technology conglomerate Cisco’s Small Business Partner Summit will be conducted virtually this week, highlighting the significance and growth potential of the small business sector across the Middle East and Africa (MEA) region.
During the summit, attendees will be given insights into Cisco Designed, a portfolio that delivers simple, secure and flexible products, available at competitive price points to help small businesses to grow.
The participants will also be allowed to explore Cisco’s Partner Programs, incentives, and rewards to expand their business offerings, while simultaneously empowering small business customers in their attempt to leverage digital solutions.
“The pandemic has intensified the digital divide that was already present in the small business market, and it is pushing companies to accelerate their digitization agendas. With our growing portfolio of software and hardware solutions for small businesses, alongside tailored advisory, Cisco is playing a pivotal role in empowering the sector to thrive, at times of crisis and beyond.”
The leading market intelligence firm IDC’s META DX Survey reveals that that 60 percent of small and medium businesses in the region have brought forward their digital transformation roadmaps by between 1 to 2 years which indicates strong progress in investing in technology.
At the Small Business Partner Summit, the local and global experts on research, advisory and digital transformation services will discuss the following opportunities and challenges:
Even though the MEA region as a whole has observed accelerated efforts to invest in digitization, small businesses remain at different stages of maturity and digital readiness. Early adopters of technologies are better equipped to not only ensure continuity but also streamline operations, gain valuable insights and thrive. Businesses with greater digital maturity are equipped to deal with cyber threats and changing network demands and even have a higher rate of recovery.
Necessity of digitization
Though the pandemic has increased the necessity for small businesses to digitize their operations, some still confront challenges related to different working styles, ensuring employee safety and managing cashflow. Besides, a shortage of digital skills and talent, alongside a degree of resistance to change and lack of budget are key challenges for small businesses.
Small businesses are investing in similar areas
As small businesses become increasingly dependent on digital technologies, decision-makers are investing in solutions that have the potential to improve outcomes for their employees and customers alike. By the next few years, small businesses are planning to invest in cloud adoption and optimization, as well as on-premises infrastructure, including both software and hardware. More mature businesses are also deploying intelligent networks that leverage AI and analytics to further drive visibility and competitiveness.