How Cloud based solutions are helping SME’s to compete with the industry leaders and accelerate growth

Cloud computing is providing an unprecedented opportunity to SME?s to leverage the tools, technology and best practices that have traditionally been available only to large players

Cloud computing is providing an unprecedented opportunity to SME?s to leverage the tools, technology and best practices that have traditionally been available only to large players. This is a truly disruptive development that is completely and irreversibly changing the competitive landscape. SME?s can now gain access to a range of products that are best-in-class and at the same time affordable. They can get access to a wide range of software that is available on the could in a pay as you go model. There are no licensing or infrastructure costs. SME?s only need to pay on a monthly basis, like utility services. A whole range of software including data storage, office productivity, CRM and ERP products are now available on the cloud at price points that the SMEs can afford. Cloud computing enables SME?s to scale their resources as the business grows. They do not have to lock their capital in infrastructure and licenses. It is a completely elastic system that allows SME?s to add resources as the system grows. They can also scale down the resources and respond quickly to the market dynamics in case the business slows down. Cloud computing enables SME?s to manage their complete business on the cloud at zero infrastructure cost. It provides following tangible benefits to the SMEs.

Lower Upfront Cost

Cloud-based services can help SME?s save money on many fronts, including hardware and software procurement and maintenance costs, power and cooling costs, and software licensing and upgrade expenses. Rather than spending money to maintain hardware that often goes unused, subscribing to software and services for a low monthly fee can help SME?s stretch their budgets further.

no alt text set
no alt text set
no alt text set
no alt text set

Higher Collaboration

Cloud-based solutions can be used at any time on almost any device with an Internet connection. This leads to greater collaboration, particularly for businesses with remote employees. A growing percentage of small- and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) consider the ability to be productive remotely as critical to their operations. Using Cloud-based software, teams in different locations can collaborate on documents without needing to e-mail attachments and share calendars and task lists from wherever they are.

Employees also can connect through instant messaging and even hold impromptu meetings with robust audio, video and Web conferencing capabilities. This improved sharing of information has the potential to enable companies to react more quickly to business opportunities.

Cloud Based Solutions

Many companies like workXmate Technologies are leveraging the cloud technology to build CRM and ERP products that bring enterprise class functionality at price points that SMEs can afford. These products are designed specifically for the SMEs and enable them to compete aggressively in the global market. The new generation CRM and ERP products help SME?s accelerate growth by giving them complete insight into their business. These products can help them manage the complete marketing cycle from campaign management to lead capture. They can also track the complete sales cycle consisting of Opportunity creation, Quotation, Order, Invoicing and Payment tracking. They can track all the activities of their sales people even when they are working from remote locations. This ensures that no leads are lost in the system and each lead is tracked to closure. This results in higher customer acquisition leading to accelerated growth.

SME?s can also get access to the best-in-class project management tools. These tools can help them manage the projects with significantly lower project management overheads. They can also track the project health and the project profitability during the course of project execution. This gives them the capability to execute projects on-time and under budget.

One of the major pain areas of SME?s is the ability to attract and retain talent. Also once talent leaves the organization; all the knowledge assets also go with the talent. New cloud based solutions enable the SME?s to build knowledge repository at very affordable price. This enables the SME?s to convert the individual knowledge into organizational knowledge. This also helps them compete aggressively with industry leaders as they can now deploy the entire organizational knowledge in competitive situations.

The new generation cloud solutions are not just tools that automate the processes. They incorporate the industry best practices as part of the recommended processes. This gives SME?s a huge advantage as they gain access to processes that are on par with the best in the world. They also get the ability to benchmark their key metrics with the industry leaders. It gives them pointers to the areas of improvement as well as the extent of the gaps.

SME?s have started embracing the cloud technology and cloud based solutions to build truly world class products and services.

By Kamal Mansharamani Director and Co-founder

Get live Share Market updates and latest India News and business news on Financial Express. Download Financial Express App for latest business news.

First published on: 16-06-2014 at 11:08 IST