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Start Digital Pack launched to aid Singapore's SMEs with digital capabilities

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New small and medium enterprises (SMEs) as well as those that are newly adopting technology in Singapore will now be able to get a head start with the new Start Digital Pack, including support in human resources.

This was announced by Minister for Communications and Information S Iswaran, in his speech at the launch event 'Start Digital, Get Connected and Be Trusted' on 9 January 2019 (Wednesday).

The Start Digital Pack is a joint initiative by the Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) and Enterprise Singapore, and an effort of the SMEs Go Digital programme which was announced in Budget 2017 and launched that year.

According to Minister Iswaran, many SME business owners have previously shared feedback wishing they had implemented basic digital solutions at the nascent stages of their businesses.

Thus the launch of Start Digital, which especially targets the needs of new SMEs, by offering affordable, modular, easy-to-use basic digital solution packages of good quality.

Here's a summary of what HR decision-makers of such SMEs need to know about this initiative:

  • Each eligible SME is entitled to one Start Digital Pack, and can take up any two solutions from five categories: Human resources management system (HRMS) and payroll; digital marketing; digital transactions; accounting; and cybersecurity. The cost will be waived for a minimum of six months and there is a contract period of at least 18 months.
  • The pack is available from the following Start Digital partners: DBS Bank, Maybank, OCBC Bank, Singtel, StarHub and UOB. Minister Iswaran expressed hopes that working with these partners would scale up tech adoption to a much larger base and boost the impact of digitalisation.
Minister Iswaran said: "SMEs can simply plug and play from day one, making it easy for owners to concentrate more on connecting with customers and growing their new business, without having to worry about digital adoption later.

"After new SMEs have embarked on their digital journey with Start Digital, they can tap on more advanced digitalisation solutions under the SMEs Go Digital umbrella as they grow, and their needs evolve."

In further efforts in creating a digital-ready workforce, the Media Industry Digital Plan (IDP) was launched in December 2018  targeting both media industry professionals and SMEs, under the SMEs Go Digital programme as well.

Read Minister Iswaran's full speech here.

Photo / 123RF

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