Vodacom tasks Nigeria’s 17m SMEs on unified communication for growth

VodacomFOR higher and improved productivity, the Small and Medium scale Enterprises in Nigeria, may need to invest in Unified Communications (UC) solution.

The UC is seen as an enabler for business development.

Currently, the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN) puts the country’s SMEs’ at about 17 million.

As such, the need for them to be more productive, formed part of the discussions at Nigerian-South African Chamber of Commerce monthly meeting, with the topic on how technology can increase the productivity of SMEs’ businesses in Nigeria.

Speaking at the event, General Manager Cisco (Nigeria) Limited, Dare Ogunlade, highlighted the benefits of UC to SMEs, which included cost reduction on communication as the technology increasingly enables voice calls, instant messaging, document sharing and video conferencing, which allows SME employees work from any device, anywhere, anytime.

Ogunlade disclosed that Nigerian SME’s employ around 84.02 per cent of Nigeria’s labor force and contributes about 48.47 per cent on the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

According to him, empowering this workforce with technology that enables them work from home, log on to a system, contact and provide services to their customers even after close of business goes a long way to improve the productivity of these SME businesses in Nigeria.

Ogunlade, who spoke about how Nigerian SME’s can improve profit margins by boosting overall operational efficiency, noted that this was especially true for businesses that have mobile employees.

The Executive Head of Operations, Vodacom Business Nigeria, Mark Shoebridge, added that with unified communications, SME employees do not have to be in the office to perform their duties.

Shoebridge said they can access their system from anywhere with an Internet connection. By making and receiving calls over the internet, executing meetings using Video Conferencing and sharing files remotely, SME’s can significantly reduce their communication, travel and operational cost; making them run their businesses more efficiently.

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