According to a survey that was carried out by Safaricom Business on 181,000 Small and medium Enterprises across 21 counties in Kenya, they found out that they are faced with a number of challenges ranging from lack of capital, lack of marketing strategies for their goods and services and poor cash flow management.
In addition to the survey, the Ready Business index test , which help businesses to understand whether they are fully taking advantage of technology or not, that was taken by 1,200 SMEs puts the level of ICT adoption by the businesses at a higher notch of 54 out of 100.
It was noticed that the leading business in adoption of technology are firms in IT and communication, import and export industries and professional services firms while the least business of technology adoption are wholesale and retail firms, hospitality industry and agribusiness firms.
“Kenya’s economy data shows SMEs make up 99% of businesses in Kenya, employing 75% of the total labour force, yet contribute only 18% to our Gross Domestic Product. Safaricom Business has therefore developed the Ready Business platform to help improve the productivity of these firms by enabling staff work more efficiently and the business meet their unique customer needs,” said Rita Okuthe, Director, Safaricom Business.
Some of the opportunities that SMEs are looking at include; diversification of revenue streams, low priced and scalable business solutions, access to adequate skills and technology, better access to customers and better access to information.
“Adoption of ICT solutions enables businesses become more efficient and creates more opportunities for them such as by plugging revenue leakages, increasing revenue opportunities through online presence or by providing better insight by way of data relating to their customers. Talking to SMEs, we have seen that while there are existing technology solutions in these areas, many are still struggling to find solutions that fit into their business environments. The Ready Business Platform is designed to specifically provide solutions is such situations,” said Rita.