Investing in the latest technology (which includes cloud computing) results in 20 to 30 percent higher workforce productivity. Microsoft, a leading global vendor of computer software, says cloud-based technology is a critical tool for economic recovery. It adds that the tool will play a critical role in enabling inclusive economic recovery with small and midsize businesses (SMBs) able to innovate far quicker and more securely at a much lower cost.

The Future of Business Resilience report released by Microsoft in 2020 explains that investing in the latest technology (which includes cloud computing) results in 20 to 30 percent higher workforce productivity, and 40 to 50 percent faster speed to market amongst some of the benefits.

The company explains that, across the Middle East and Africa, an estimated 90 per cent of all businesses fall into the small-to-medium-sized (SMB) category, highlighting the economic importance of these entrepreneurial enterprises. “This is the enabling environment that we should be nurturing for SMBs and new start-ups alike if our economies are to successfully rebound post-pandemic. There is no doubt that economic recovery will be buoyed by the success of our start-ups and small businesses,’ Ola Williams, the company’s Country Manager for Nigeria, noted.

“The lesson thrust upon us by the pandemic is that building resilience is key to ensuring business continuity in ever-changing market conditions in which many SMBs are operating on tighter budgets, he added. Williams pointed out that the required resilience is rooted in digital transformation, allowing businesses to streamline operations and evolve to better meet current needs while developing the agility that would enable quick pivots in response to future changes.

“Cloud adoption amongst SMBs is a critical first step in their pursuit of resilience on their digital transformation journey. Beyond this first step, conducting business in the cloud, in the long term, is also the best bet for future-proofing operations in a global digital economy. This economy will be driven by the latest technologies, from artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) to the Internet of Things (IoT), which use the cloud as a platform,” he said.

He cited Information Technology & Innovation Foundation which notes that cloud computing is integral to new IT-driven business developments, which, in themselves, will stimulate the economy by driving new solutions to existing problems.


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