Technology Drives Competitive Advantage For SMEs | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Technology Drives Competitive Advantage For SMEs

Posted: Sep 22, 2015 at 12:02 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

By Emmanuel Okwuke,


At the recent NigeriaCom 2015, CIO Forum, Vodacom Business Nigeria shared insight into how technology can help Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) adapt to market changes, increase productivity, and improve competitive advantage.

Speaking at the forum, Vodacom’s Executive Head of products and services at Vodacom Business, Wale Odeyemi, highlighted the benefits of Unified Communications to SMEs.

He said one of the most important benefits of unified communications for SMEs is that customers can access the network from multiple devices at the same time, which he said makes it easy to manage contacts, send and receive Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) calls and carry out multiple communications at the same time, which enables video conferencing to take place on a laptop while a voice call takes place on a worker’s mobile phone.

Odeyemi said that 75 per cent of small business employees say that flexible working has made them more productive.

According to Odeyemi, productivity gains are one of the many reasons for SMEs to take advantage of unified communications.

Other gains, he said, include cost reduction, increased customer service and improved competitive advantage.

Odeyemi explained that from instant messaging features to using the internet for voice calls, unified communications improves profit margins by boosting overall operational efficiency; this is especially true for businesses that have mobile employees.

He said with unified communications, employees do not have to be in the office to perform their duties. They can access the system from anywhere with an Internet connection. This means that employees can work from home, log on to the system, contact and provide services to customers even after close of business.

Social media communications can also be easily integrated into a unified communications network.

In doing this: “users can benefit from Presence technology, which helps users determine the whereabouts of one another”, he said.

Odeyemi concluded that SMEs can now enjoy the cost savings that come with this solution, stressing that Nigerian businesses should consider unified communications to simplify their day-to-day business operations.