Running a Successful SME Using Free Technologies

The word “free technology” is a myth, it is never really just about buying a tool and installing it. The very IT industry and its various service branches are proof to the fact that tech adoption at any level involves multiple costs; be it with regard to installation, integration, testing, maintenance, employee training & acclimatization – adopting technology is never a one-step process and definitely not free.

Apart from these, there are also hidden costs in the form of disruption to established workflows, irrelevance of certain functions and employees in the new order, that need to be taken into account before any major investment. The true challenge lies in de-risking adoption of technology by lowering these upfront costs and enabling greater accessibility of the new setup to talent through proper training and support.

However, despite these challenges, it is also true that when compared to the past, the cost of owning and developing technology/software is rapidly falling. There are multiple choices now and the speed at which these choices are becoming available is also increasing.

Cloud & mobile technology have made technology more accessible and available through flexible models such as Saas, Paas, etc. And SMEs too are not ignorant of the benefits that technology can bring to their operations and solutions.

The question now is not whether SMEs will benefit from tech adoption, it is more fitting to ask whether technology has rendered these businesses more relevant or not, given the fast pace in which the technology environment is growing and changing world over. Without a doubt, technology has and will render SMEs more relevant especially in today’s context where, economies of scale is fast losing ground, there is a rapid move towards economic & political protectionism globally, and workforce preferences are dramatically evolving.

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