Sergey Nivens - Fotolia
The Singapore government has pre-approved as many as 50 IT products in a national programme that provides small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) with access to the latest technologies.
Announced by the Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) at an industry briefing on 11 May 2017, the technologies include a wide range of business applications, such as fleet management and supply chain integration, as well as biometric authentication systems for the construction industry.
The IMDA said the IT products were selected based on criteria such as ease of use, pricing, whether they meet the requirements of SMEs and the suppliers’ capability and capacity. It added that the criteria will be expanded in future to include data protection, data analytics and interoperability with other systems.
Philip Heah, IMDA’s senior director for infrastructure and SMEs, said the awarded suppliers have displayed clear business appreciation and acumen in their respective industries.
“Their digital solutions have the potential to scale and are proven to be of value as tested by pilot users in various industries such as cleaning and security, food services, retail, wholesale trade and logistics sectors,” he said.
In February 2017, the Singapore government announced that it was pumping more than S$80m (US$56.4m) to help SMEs in their digital transformation efforts, and to shore up the country’s capabilities in cyber security and data analytics.
Part of this funding would go into the SMEs Go Digital Programme, which would also provide SMEs in various industries with advice on technologies to deploy at each stage of their growth.
“Every business needs to be a digital business to remain relevant and thrive in the future economy,” said Tan Kiat How, chief executive of IMDA. “As part of the SMEs Go Digital programme, IMDA has partnered the infocomm industry to offer SMEs a list of pre-approved digital solutions that can be readily adopted to meet their business needs.”
One SME that has benefited from the SMEs Go Digital programme is Cheng Yew Heng, Singapore’s largest and oldest sugar manufacturer.
Using a cloud-based application called veriHub that offers inventory tracking and authentication capabilities to ensure compliance with food import regulations, Cheng Yew Heng has achieved 200% more exports to China due to faster turnaround in the export process.
SMEs that are interested in deploying any of the pre-approved IT products can visit here for more information, or contact the nearest SME Centre. A SME Digital Tech Hub will also be set up later in 2017 to help SMEs that require more customised technology packages.