Creative Synergies Group is a leading global digital innovation solution provider. They synergize deep domain expertise with next-gen technologies to deliver convergence of digital engineering, embedded systems and software technologies for customers.
Dr. Mukesh Gandhi, Founder and CEO, Creative Synergies Group, tells us more. Excerpts from an interview:
DQ: Where do SMEs in India stand today compared to pre-pandemic times?
Dr. Mukesh Gandhi: The SME sector in India is one of the largest contributors to the socio-economic development of the country. Despite the disruptions brought about by the pandemic, in 2020-21 alone, over 60 SMEs entered the market. It is, hence, safe to say that the industry’s resilience and potential to scale has remained consistent.
On the digital transformation front, however, things looked a lot different pre-pandemic times. SMEs were habituated to tread with caution when it came to investments. With a large portion of their budget allocated to production and marketing, digital innovation investments were a very low priority. But, switching to remote work during the pandemic, the SME sector in India lost a lot of manpower. Having well-connected systems that enabled remote monitoring became crucial, and investing in digital transformation initiatives wasn’t optional anymore.
This, in turn, helped them scale and stay relevant even during the pandemic. As a result, they now view digitalization as imperative to their growth and don’t hesitate collaborating with digital transformation vendors who can help scale and transform their business.
Digital adoption rates amongst Indian SMEs, today, are comparable to larger businesses globally and according to IDC, 60% of SMEs in India will invest in automation by 2027.
DQ: What are the challenges faced by SMEs, and what’s stopping them from embracing technological adoption?
Dr. Mukesh Gandhi: The last few years have been turbulent, to say the least. Multiple waves of the global pandemic, geopolitical conflicts and economic recessions aren’t circumstances that are easy to tide through. Despite the odds, SMEs in India restructured their approach and business objectives and sailed through most of it. However, the series of events have made customers, both enterprises and people alike, increasingly cautious about their expenses and the brands they associate with.
As a result, it has become challenging for SMEs to achieve business resiliency. They are concerned, and rightfully so, about not making enough return on their technological investments. But, their approach is different today, compared to pre-pandemic times. Earlier, they would refrain from investing in digital innovations altogether. Now, they understand its potential, and take their time assessing the right approach and collaborations.
While there are still cases where SMEs still avoid tech adoption to cut costs, the majority of them recognize its merits. As a result, it is estimated that in 2023, total budgets dedicated to IT investments and connectivity services at Indian SMBs will increase by 20% to compete with larger businesses.
DQ: How can SMEs in India invest in digital transformation given the economic headwinds?
Dr. Mukesh Gandhi: The economic headwinds haven’t impacted India the same way as the other larger economies. On a broad scale, businesses in India are faring well. However, the future remains uncertain and SMEs need to adapt, and digital transformation can act as a shield.
It is important for SMEs to zero-down their business goals and objectives. By clearly identifying their targets, they can trace their steps backwards and evaluate the digital investments necessary to get there.
Some might mistake this to mean that investing in any and all technologies that they can get their hands on is the way to go. But, this is exactly what SMEs, or any business for that matter, should avoid doing—especially given the economic circumstances. Instead, they need to ask, “What are my pain points and how can technology help me address them?”
If the business wants to streamline their production and supply chain, it would make sense to invest in Industry 4.0 technology first, and then assess the need for other digital solutions.
Consulting brands that specialize in digital engineering solutions is another way for SMEs to ensure that they get their money’s worth. Managing everything in-house may not be economically feasible, and searching for talent and devising implementation strategies can consume valuable time and resources. By collaborating with third-party experts, SMEs can ensure they obtain optimal value for their investments without straining their budgets or wasting time.
Time is of essence and the competitive landscape across sectors continues to grow in a thriving economy like India. With third-party collaborations, SMEs can have all their needs taken care of without stretching out their pockets or wasting time.
DQ: What solutions does Creative Synergies Group have in place for SMEs?
Dr. Mukesh Gandhi: At Creative Synergies Group, we have a diverse portfolio of clientele, ranging from over 40 global Fortune 500 companies to upcoming startups and SMEs. Our expertise lies in our ability to assess the needs of our clients and to then develop digital engineering solutions that suit their specific needs.
Our service offerings for SMEs include digital product and process engineering, intelligent and connected product design, firmware, OS and more, across leading platforms to help develop future-ready products.
With analytics and AI and ML at the heart of automation and digital transformation, we provide services and solutions in analytics, predictive maintenance, customized personalization, asset efficiency analysis and wastage minimization, to name a few.
Regardless of the size, the clients we work with benefit from substantial ROI, consistent quality in our solutions and get to integrate next-generation technologies into their products, systems and workflows.
For instance, in the Indian auto-component industry and MSMEs contribute to one-fourth of the revenue. They need to constantly innovate their products to compete with global brands. Our solutions are well poised to help them streamline operations and produce better quality products, ones that are integrated with emerging technologies, giving them an edge over competitors.