SMEs must adapt or struggle » SMEInsider

SMEs must adapt or struggle

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A new survey has revealed worrying news that over a third (38%) of UK small-to-medium sized enterprises (SMEs) believe that if they don’t adapt their business models they will go out of business in five years. Perhaps reflecting the mood of uncertainty both pre and post EU referendum, the findings of the 2016 ‘SME Barometer Research’ commissioned by Exact, show that only a mere 2% have done something about this growing threat.

A closer look at the research was that two thirds (64%) of all UK SMEs face competition from new digital players in their space. Yet, surprisingly, only 6% are investing in new technology to keep up with this digitalisation movement and retain market share, demonstrating the pressing need to focus on innovation.

Gavin Fell, General Manager of Exact Cloud Solutions UK, said, “It’s great to see that there’s such a positive outlook among SMEs, but it’s clear that in order to deliver on those ambitions businesses need to adapt to the times. Digitalisation is going to be key to ensuring you are not only efficient, but remain competitive in today’s highly challenging environment.”

In terms of what tools SMEs are using to rise to this challenge, cloud technologies appear to be gathering pace in the UK with 58% now using one or more cloud tools, up from 47% in the same survey last year.

“The use of technology to deepen business insight means that the wider SME economy is entering a new period of rapid growth and efficiency,” said Erik van der Meijden, CEO of Exact. “As customer demands become ever more stringent, we are seeing entrepreneurial businesses taking advantage of digitalisation to broaden their service offerings. Exact provides ambitious SMEs with the technology and services they need to grow beyond their limits. As a result, companies are becoming increasingly agile, adapting to customer demands and market fluctuations in real time.”