SME Digitalisation - are SMEs ready for Smart Nation?

A deep dive via Services 4.0 conference on how SMEs can thrive in this digital age

  1. 13 March 2019, Wednesday - Singapore has, over the years, built its capabilities and became one of the most successful economies in the world. While Singapore is surveyed to be one of the easiest places to do business and ranks number one in the World Bank Human Capital Index, Singapore Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) face challenges to stay competitive, relevant and up to speed. This is especially so with global volatility, tight labour market and an ageing workforce. Are Singapore SMEs ready for digitalisation?
  1. According to a recent study by ASME-Microsoft on Singapore SMEs, employers are optimistic about the potential impact that digital transformation brings to their bottom-lines. SMEs who are actively implementing digital initiatives projected that their investments will deliver an average of 26 percent in revenue gains and achieve an average of 22 percent in cost savings. The mindset of employers is key. KPMG studied that of 100 local small to medium-sized businesses – 64% consider digitalisation the biggest challenge, followed by manpower at 62%, and innovation at 61%. Less than 50% of respondents have realised its full potential by leveraging analytics and deploying a digital strategy. Hence, there is great potential for local SMEs to embark on digitalisation to scale up their business and workers’ skill sets, with beneficial impact in the long term.
  1. Human Capital Singapore (HCS) and National Trades Union Congress’ (NTUC) e2i (Employment and Employability Institute) have invited key stakeholders, Government and domain experts to share their insights at the “Services 4.0 and Get ready for Smart Nation” Conference, which seeks to examine SMEs’ constraints, issues and to uncover potential solutions. This conference brings together over 350 business executives from MNCs, SMEs, Startups, GLCs and Public Sector agencies to discuss relevant topics pertaining to digitalisation and internationalisation for local businesses and SMEs.
  1. The conference is happening at an inflection point, where Singapore is gearing towards Smart Nation. With Singapore’s own experts sharing on Artificial Intelligence (such as AI Singapore; BasisAI; GovTech) and Digitalisation, as well as overseas domain experts from China (Alibaba Cloud International) and Brazil (DOT), this event is a confluence of minds meeting to spearhead a new smart era in Singapore, the region and globally. For Singapore, grooming digital talent is a priority, as Singapore pushes towards a Smart Nation. Please refer to Annex A for the conference schedule and speakers.

HCS Lifelong Learning Award

  1. We will also witness the presentation of the HCS Lifelong Learning Award by Dr Koh Poh Koon, Deputy Secretary-General of NTUC, and Senior Minister of State, Ministry of Trade and Industry. The award recognises 20 corporate (both private and public) and individual recipients who have demonstrated the spirit of continuing learning and asserted positive influence on other learners. This award, at its 10th year, has evolved from the HCS Human Capital Champion 2009 Award.
  1. The companies receiving awards have demonstrated continuous capability development in systems, processes and people and are constantly reviewing ways to improve and transform their business model. Additionally, they seek to nurture and equip their people with mindset change and WSQ skill sets for employability. There are three categories of Corporate Awards: Titanium, Platinum and Gold.
  1. HCS Individual Award recipients are learners who have diligently sought to pursue continuous knowledge and skills for self-development. They have demonstrated passion and conviction in continuous learning, interest in thought leadership programmes and championship for WSQ courses. There are four categories for Individuals: Platinum, Gold, Silver, Bronze.

Annex A - List of Winners

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