They may be micro, small, and medium enterprises by definition, but the impact they have on a global scale is substantial.
Globally, MSMEs comprise 90% of all existing firms, provide 60%-70% of all employment, and account for at least 50% of the total GDP everywhere. (This percentage point share of GDP goes up in developing countries.)
In recognition of the crucial role these businesses play towards achieving Sustainable Development Goals listed in its charter, the UN General Council has declared June 27 as the International Day for MSMEs.
MSME Day is a celebration of the sector’s contribution to the global economy. This year, it is also a call to action toward greater investment in the sector.
The state of MSMEs at Zoho’s home base in India
In India, as it is with all developing countries, MSMEs are the backbone of the economy and contribute significantly to the GDP. Importantly, small enterprises – both in the formal and the non-formal sectors – employ a large section of the underprivileged population: including a large cross section of the rural population that earn their living thanks to these enterprises. Additionally, millions of women find employment through small self-help groups.
The Indian government acknowledges their contribution and have devised many MSME development and support initiatives.
However, many MSMEs today face multiple challenges, including but not restricted to intense competition from MNCs, lack of funding, and fluctuating market conditions.
The emergence of Industry 4.0 – where business processes are becoming automated, and productivity parameters tweaked – has posed challenges to the sector. MSMEs today face the dire need to reinvent themselves using digital tools even to stay afloat, let alone thrive.
There are also multiple compliance issues by way of government regulations that are hard to cope with. Bigger enterprises can allocate resources and respond quickly to such challenges.
For small and micro enterprises, this is where the right business software solution that is compliant with the legal requirements can make a huge difference.
Digitize and innovate
Since our inception, at Zoho we have always had a special place for small and micro enterprises.
By the way, did you know that our name “Zoho” itself came about a wordplay surrounding “Small Office Home Office”?
We are honored to count tens of thousands of small businesses as our users, and we have never lost track of building software that will benefit small businesses. We also pride ourselves in keeping our software affordable for even the smallest of businesses across the world.
We believe that with the right tools, small enterprises can easily overcome the challenges in this hyper-connected era of doing business.
MSMEs with a digital makeover can:
Build a strong online presence – create websites, automate sales & marketing, set up an online store and etc.
Expand their reach – Capture new markets and expand existing markets
Manage business finances easily
Broaden their access to data and knowledge
- Boost productivity and profitability
On June 24, 2019, we launched our MSME development drive, Zoho Empower. The program aims to build digital literacy in MSMEs and make it a core competency of small businesses so that they can harness the power of digitization tools.
In Tamil Nadu, the South Indian state where we have our global developmental headquarters, we have partnered with Tamil Nadu Small and Tiny Industries Association (TANSTIA), an apex body, to reach out to micro and small industries.
Through a sustained campaign in the months ahead, we hope to help small and micro enterprises:
- Create websites and webpages using Zoho Sites
- File GST returns using Zoho Books
- Move invoice management online using Zoho Books
- Use social media to drive traffic to their website
- Nurture customers with Zoho CRM
- Generate leads using Zoho Campaigns
- And even run your entire business with Zoho One
Zoho will also offer TANSTIA members access to its software at discounted rates. Going forward, Zoho and TANSTIA will create user educational content in Tamil to help MSMEs with their digitization efforts. Our first set of workshops will start in August. TANSTIA members get exclusive benefits from Zoho.
Tamil Nadu is just the first step. We strive to partner with more MSME entities to further the Zoho Empower initiative.