4IR & levelling the playing field for SMEs

The Fourth Industrial Revolution or Industry 4.0 is very much indeed a reality-a level-up transformation right into a more linked ecosystem that mesh people, processes, machines, big data, and intelligence seamlessly. Sector 4.0 differs in its breadth, velocity and depth, and overall impact on systems. With the democratisation of high-speed access to the internet, IoT machine and sensors, Cloud Safe-keeping, and Processing Infrastructure to crunch Big Data with AI and Machine learning, Industry 4.0 gets the probable to bring significant positive change with regards to efficiency for manufacturing, source chain, omnichannel customer engagement, retailing etc.

The technology that is driving Industry 4.0 is very much indeed a opportunity for Bangladesh aswell, and the time has come for dynamic cross-market dialogues, best practice posting, collaborations, and explorations to discover a way to give attention to critical uses-cases to look at across priority industries. Clearly, this will also initiate the benefit of a more rapidly learning cycle and present an advantage to countries like Bangladesh competing with legacy producers in developed nations that contain had a brain start in the earlier days. The affect of technology adoption could be exponentially scaled up if we can get our SME sector as a priority.

SMES Seeing that THE NUCLEUS OF Production : Small and channel enterprises (SMEs) will be the lifeblood of the Bangladesh market. In 2020, they accounted for 30 per cent of total occupation and accounted for 20 per cent of GDP. The future sustainable development of Bangladesh's market is very closely linked with the overall performance of the SME sector. Factors such as the entrepreneurial mindset of our people, greater support from the federal government, usage of investment, and little workforces have been causeing this to be sector so vibrant over the years. These smaller sized enterprises drive improvements to solve local challenges and establish niches within their local communities.

As the adoption of ICT alternatives grow, the growth probable exponentially increases because of this sector. Subsequently, telecommunication operators have the opportunity to enable them beyond connectivity as their trusted development partner.

The new normal of COVID-19 has validated two things. Largely, it has managed to get evident that technology adoption is certainly major for survival in this latest reality. Second of all, the SMEs who have been the front runner to the adoption have observed the benefit of business sustainability and better capital operations.

TELECOM SECTOR Seeing that THE ENABLER OF THE Market: This opportunity to work with the SME sector closely pieces an inspiring context for telecommunication operators to sustain their partnership and answers to focus, especially to operate a vehicle the future improvement and adoption to Sector 4.0. Today, corporations like Grameenphone have the dual know-how of mobility and ICT and IoT Service integration that can play a pivotal role in SMEs digitisation, expansion, and Sector 4.0 adoption journey.

Telcos are recognised, over the past 2 decades, seeing that the engines of resilient and progressive societies worldwide. This is proven once again this past year; in the couple of weeks because the COVID-19 outbreak, telecom companies have identified themselves in the centre of a fast-changing environment. Communications and connectivity started to be a critical service for the complete population and business houses as they evolved their lifestyles in a work-from-residence environment and digital infrastructure started to be increasingly needed for human conversation amidst national lockdowns. Assisting this dramatic change is not easy for the operators, however they have displayed themselves to come to be agile and decisive, working in collaboration with the general public and exclusive sector, offering clients relief packages while spending so much time to ensure that systems can cope with the surge popular.

ENABLING SME THROUGH Key MOBILITY AND ICT: Seeing that the pandemic accelerated the necessity for digital transformation, it again impacted the whole business spectrum to accommodate the changed reality and new normalcy. Telecom operators had been at the forefront to witness the resilience of our SME community to look at digital and ICT answers to safeguard their business, customers, and personnel. A nationwide 4G and Narrow Band IoT (nb-IoT) prepared network features allowed us to create the main connectivity enabling layer of secured connectivity for our SMEs.

Enabled with secured connectivity, we witnessed the SME segment adopting tier-one ICT solutions such as for example bulk messaging, voice broadcasting, automation etc., to maintain engaged with their customers. With the advancement of residence delivery and easy digital payment, many have migrated their business model online to deliver to their local community more efficiently. Telematic solutions to monitor fleet and possessions along with field drive management capabilities have been a favorite solution being adopted by the SME network.

However, to get started and leverage the chance on the market, SMEs require a lot more than traditional telecom providers and tier one ICT alternatives. Within an increasingly digital get older, extra services such as for example hosting, storage and web-site creation tools, cyber protection, and IoT are necessary for small businesses from the outset. A perfect scenario for various small business buyers would be to possess a digitalisation partner who can advise and consolidate provider challenging above companies bundled into one bundle.

The best objective is to make a sustainable and scalable use-case-specific adoption of Industry 4.0 technology by our SMEs for higher contribution to economic growth. To aid that ambition, telecom companies should build their private capacity and strengthening partnerships to own right advisory and answer consultancy to various sectors. This also requires deep collaboration, trust, empathy, a fresh method of experimentation, and learning and validation.

NEED TO BUILD Potential AND CAPACITY TO SOLIDIFY SUSTAINABLE SME Potential: We believe technology will there be as an enabler; at the same time, it's the people behind the technology who make the difference. As such, we will work carefully with the Ministry of Youth to explore PPP arenas to build the abilities of the future country who can perfectly donate to the SME sector as well. Additionally, we assume that the adoption of market 4.0 technology or our current ICT solutions will require a numerous mindset to explore selected agile soft skills.

Presently, in Bangladesh, there is a have to boost talent inside the manufacturing industry instead of replace them. The most crucial action is to purchase capacity building and cultural switch. Developing soft and complex skills in automation, design, analytics, and digital systems will prepare the workforce for the changing environment and make them ready for near future learning, consequently keeping them relevant.

As the primary call for nationwide SMEs, telecom operators have the deep trust-based relationship to maintain the digitalisation trip of SMEs for their future. By creating a wider selection of insight-influenced partnerships, telecom operators will ideally play a confident country-wide purpose on the SME sector. SMEs have all the potential to get the backbone of Bangladesh's overall economy and built with robust telecom and ICT option capability, their future choices are limitless

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