MSMEs are the backbone of the Indian economy and it employs more than 110 million workers in our country, providing them livelihood across the region. The fact is that over 63 million MSMEs contribute more than a quarter of our country’s GDP. Considering the significant contribution of the MSME sector to the economy and the number of people employed by it, the sector largely depends on human resources. And with manual work process and no digitization in place, there is a lot of pressure on SMEs in terms of earning profits, maintaining high margins, acquiring new customers and managing operations.
Amidst COVID, the sector has understood the need and many MSMEs have used digital transformation to transform their business and manage operations, hold data at every level and make smart decisions, which ultimately increases their profits, and increases their efficiency. In the last couple of years, digitization has opened up new opportunities for businesses as they had a direct impact on profits and revenues. In fact, all industries across different sectors have benefited from the digital transformation. Mr. Bhaskar Ganguli, Director, Marketing and Sales- Mass Software Solutions Pvt. Ltd. share more insights on the same.
- What solutions do you offer and how are you contributing to the digital transformation in the MSME sector?
Mass Software Solutions is a globally recognized digital transformation company. We provide web, mobile and digital consulting solutions to small businesses, agencies and enterprises as well as we work with many IT consultants and companies in the US and UK as an extended resource.
We work with customers who are in the MSME segment and are located outside India. Most of them do not have much knowledge in terms of digital transformation and how it can actually help them in their business in terms of increasing efficiency, reducing cost and giving them higher margins and better control of their operations.
So, usually when an SME approaches us with a particular problem, what we do initially is work with them, we try to find out their current process and then develop a solution and propose a solution in discussion with their team and they manage business operations. As well as scale effectively. This is how we have been working with most of the SMEs and helped them take them to the next level.
- Why is digital transformation the need of the hour for MSMEs?
There is a lot of pressure on SMEs in terms of earning profits, maintaining high margins, acquiring new customers and managing operations. MSMEs are in a position where they can harness digital transformation to transform their business and manage operations, have data at every level and make smart decisions, which ultimately increases their profits, and increases their efficiency.
Since digital transformation has got a lot to do with data, all data is available for management at one place and they can take database modifications and deficiencies, not sentiment, emotional basis efficient, so that in a way also helps companies to predict the future and manage customer expectations as well as manage customer satisfaction.
- What types of technologies are used to implement digital transformation in organizations?
Digital transformation in an organization evolves around process change, business model change, domain change or cultural/organizational change. It can be defined as the process of combining digital technologies into business operations with an aim to fundamentally change the way businesses function. To support this, there are several digital technologies that can be used in the digital transformation process for MSMEs. Creating a custom solution requires Node JS, and Python for the back-end, then PostgreSQL, MySQL for the database, and MuleSoft 4 for the in-memory database using cloud storage and DevOps as well.
Emerging technologies like AI, IoT, Robotics, AR, ML etc. can be leveraged by MSMEs to handle tasks that have hitherto been done manually by human resources. These technologies help automate and control many processes across industries.
- Which industries are undergoing rapid transformation in the MSME sector?
MSMEs emerge as a highly dynamic sector in India and it plays an essential role in the social and economic development of the country by generating the best job opportunities. In the last couple of years, digitization has opened up new opportunities for the businesses involved in manufacturing, retail, lending platforms and many more. This had a direct impact on profits and revenue. In fact, all industries in different sectors have benefited from digital transformation.
- Can you share some names from the MSME industry who have successfully implemented digital transformation? How have they benefited from it?
MSME industry who have successfully implemented digital transformation can benefit immensely. For example, we have worked with and helped many small and medium sized enterprises to transform them. “The Lunch Bag”, a healthy school food business in Ireland, has benefited greatly from the digital transformation initiative. It has helped them streamline their processes and scale their operations manifold. As a result, they may add many more schools to their platform this year.
URA (Universal Registered Agent), a registered agent based in the United States, entrusted us with their digital transformation. We have created a complete admin section to manage and process all their information at their fingertips. This helped them to increase their revenue and serve their customers better. We also worked with Apeejay Group, their real estate arm, and built their corporate website, which helped them attract global visitors and inquiries.
- What are some of the latest developments that MSMEs need to pay attention to right now?
From a software and digitization standpoint, they have to take care of data security and scalability of their digital platforms and processes. Data security will play an important role and will represent a challenge for MSMEs to transition to a more IT-enabled environment. Our experience and knowledge in this area can help MSMEs to transition faster and effectively.
- How has the industry evolved compared to previous years?
The industry is constantly evolving and the MSME sector has digital technologies to support the digital transformation process. However, in the last two years especially during COVID 19, we have seen a trend where small and medium companies have realized the requirements and pushed for digital transformation. In this process of digital transformation, cloud computing has been widely adopted as it has helped MSMEs to scale up various applications to manage their business and operations efficiently.
This has created new avenues and spurred the growth of IT consulting and services companies, but these companies are also under great pressure to protect information and databases. As a result, over the past two years companies have placed great emphasis on security and scalability, which are pillars of any MSME. Security and scaling were the two most important aspects that have been brought into the development and deployment processes.
- What are the challenges you see while serving the MSME sector?
Our customers are usually SMEs who come to us for our expertise and knowledge in various industries and development processes. We look at the process, analyze them and give them a holistic solution on how digital transformation can help them and what we can do to ease their pain points and make them more effective and efficient.
While serving these MSME customers, we face some significant challenges mainly due to lack of knowledge. They often face difficulties in transitioning to new procedures and guidelines. Furthermore, the current process is not consistently well documented. Another challenge when dealing with SMEs arises due to paucity of funds hence it is difficult to leverage the latest state-of-the-art technologies.
- What are your future plans for Mass Software Solutions in the coming years?
We are currently working with MSMEs in their digital transformation journey. We look forward to serving enterprise customers soon. We are planning to build our software IT products that will help companies in their transformation journey. Today, we are primarily a service-oriented business and will gradually move into product development.