Pandemic gives push to digital transformation, SMEs urged to join in the race

Saturday, May 08, 2021 09:00

A man experiences on-the-spot travel via a new digital platform. — VNA/VNS Photo

The COVID-19 pandemic has sped up the process of digital transformation in businesses, experts said, and has urged companies to consider their own resources and conditions to ensure and increase efficiency.

Workers at a construction site in Ha Noi use FaceID on their smartphones to register their arrival at work making it faster and more convenient to clock on.

In the logistics sector, the application of technology was growing. Drivers are using their smartphones to track the routes and shipments.

According to the Viet Nam Logistics Association, between 50 and 60 per cent of logistics enterprises were applying technology in their operations.

At Sai Gon Newport Corporation, the application of advanced management system helped reduce the time shipments stayed at the port by 55 per cent and reduce delivery time by 75 per cent.

Vu Tuan Anh, deputy director at consulting agency Dr SME, said that digital transformation was an inevitable trend of enterprises, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. If enterprises were slow in digital transformation, they would face difficulties when competing with others especially in the rapid international integration.

“Digital transformation is not simply buying a software or a technology," Tuan Anh said. "Enterprises must pay attention to their resources and conditions to ensure the efficient process of digital transformation.”

Nguyen Hoa Binh, Chairman of NextTech Group, said that micro and small–sized enterprises, despite accounting for 96.7 per cent of the total number of enterprises in Viet Nam, contributed 40 per cent to the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) and provided 60 per cent of jobs.

But due to their limited budgets, they had not benefited much from the digital transformation.

Digital transformation solution providers often paid more attention to Government agencies and medium and large enterprises who had a greater budget and were often located in major cities, he said.

Nguyen Van Khoa, CEO of FPT, said that there were about five million household businesses in Viet Nam who were also subject to digital transformation at different levels.

A study by Cisco showed that the participation of SMEs in Viet Nam in the digital transformation process could contribute US$24-30 billion to the country GDP’s by 2024 and significantly help the post-pandemic recovery.

FPT Chairman Truong Gia Binh cited statistics that revealed 50 per cent of SMEs went bankrupt in the first five years and 90 per cent in the next five years, stressing that the competition would be much fiercer in the digital transformation.

Binh said that digital transformation was accelerating the transition to a digital economy which was enabling enterprises to develop platforms to promote their operation and business.

It was more convenient for big enterprises to digital transform because they had their own ecosystems while SMEs did not have much budget for this.

Under the digital transformation programme during the 2021-25 period, the Ministry of Planning and Investment wanted 100 per cent of enterprises to receive training in digital transformation to enhance their awareness. — VNS

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