MoTC Announces Next Phase of Digital Transformation Program at QITCOM 2019
The Digital Transformation for Small and Medium Business Enterprises (DTSME), an initiative of the Ministry of Transport & Communications (MoTC) has today announced the digital accelerator program - the next phase of its digital transformation objective of transforming businesses in Qatar. The announcement took place on the sidelines of the Qatar IT Conference & Exhibition (QITCOM 2019), which wrapped up at QNCC on Nov. 1, under the theme “Safe Smart Cities.”
The digital accelerator program will be an enriched version of the DTSME program, with a realigned focus on sector, business establishment segments and technology domains. It is targeted at increasing the overall ranking of the country in utilizing Emerging Technologies, such as: Internet of Things, Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality and Artificial Intelligence. The program will commence in early 2020 with a niche focus on business maturity levels and approaching the transformation of SMEs in Qatar through both physical in-site transformations as well as online.
With the extension of the DTSME programme, MoTC further aims to strengthen the ecosystem of business establishments through digital empowerment in key sectors by creating value for all stakeholders in Qatar's digital economy.
Officially launched in 2018, the DTSME program enabled technology partners to connect with SMEs easily over a set of interactive sessions detailed on the online portal www.GoDigital.qa. The program’s portal served a dual purpose of transferring knowledge, tools, and opportunities; and it also provides a physical and virtual space for businesses and SMEs to network. The program has executed around 250 interactive sessions till date.
Partners of the DTSME include the Ministry of Commerce & Industry, Qatar Development Bank, Communications Regulatory Authority, Ooredoo and Microsoft. All partners are committed to delivering the importance of Digital Transformation to SMEs through offering digital solutions utilizing the support of over 40 service providers. Since its launch, DTSME has empowered SMEs to optimize their business models through digital solutions and facilitate digital partnerships between SMEs, government entities and technology enablers.
The ecommerce domain workshop organized by the program guided SMEs in utilizing different platforms to ease the process of payments online. One of the workshops - “Collect payments efficiently: An Efficient and Quick Way for Business Owners to Get Rid of the Hassle of Payments Collection” - was executed by MaktApp, a DTSME’s local service providers, to support SMEs in collecting their payments online using the cloud based invoicing platform. Other eCommerce service providers and payment integrators in Qatar were constantly executing sessions throughout the duration of the program. Some key service providers in the ecommerce domain are: DohaBank, QPay, Tess Systems among many others.
A set of different interactive sessions on Web Enablement and Cloud were also executed to support SMEs with the process of building websites and integrating Automated Intelligence (AI) in their business models with the use of cloud platforms. Sessions include: “Creating an Unforgettable Customer Experience” conducted by the service provider “Bright Information Systems W.L.L” which provided a transformative experience for SMEs by showcasing why customers are businesses’ top priority. A wide range of service providers also supported in delivering the required tools and platforms for businesses to adopt to cloud and have an online presence like: Deloitte, Cisco, NewWaves, BlueLynx, Excelledia, LEDD Technologies, Advanced Computing Company, SAP and among many others.
Commenting on the occasion, Her Excellency Reem Al Mansoori, Assistant Undersecretary for the Digital Society Development Sector at the Ministry of Transport and Communications, said: “The Digital Transformation of SMEs will support Qatar’s digital economy by enhancing the level of digital maturity through digital enablement, innovation and incubation. We believe that SMEs are one of the engines of a thriving digital sector in Qatar, and for this reason we are focusing our efforts to enable them with the right technology tools.”
She also added, “We are proud to announce that the execution of the DTSME workshops has led to reaching 6000 unique SMEs and digitally transforming over 600 SMEs across all three focus domains of web enablement, ecommerce and cloud. We are humbled to witness constant increase in market demand for digital transformation workshops as well as an increase in formed digital partnerships. With the current target reach of businesses in the digital field through the networking platform ‘Godigital.qa,’ we are extending our support to the digital ecosystem with the end-to-end digital transformation of the business value chain”
The DTSME program has created positive impact on the overall business community in Qatar through fresh initiatives and series which enabled the business community to understand and appreciate the digital ecosystem and trends globally. The first of these is a series launched as the Emerging Tech Series, which focused on discovering and exploring the best and most innovative technologies newly available in the market and how businesses can benefit from such tech. The use of Artificial Intelligence, Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality and other trending technologies in the industry were explored with the support of speakers and professors from different companies and universities such as: Texas A & M University, PwC, A101 and others. The series event on “AI and Machine Learning” had speakers from Microsoft, QCRI, IBM & Integration XPERTS introduced businesses in different sectors like Retail, Energy, Transport and Healthcare to different emerging technology platform and showcased how those technologies can be utilized as a developmental tool. The Arab Women in Tech Series, the first of its kind in Qatar, focuses on successful women leaders in technology who shared their experiences and insights which has been well appreciated by the Qatar business community. The Arab Women in Tech was launched earlier this year in partnership with the Digital Incubation Centre (DIC) - an incubator under the purview of the Ministry of Transport and Communications. The series kicked off with IBM CTO and Microsoft Country Manager as panellists, shedding light on opportunities for women in the technology field.
“The relaunch of the program will support the initial vision of promoting digital innovation, competitiveness and growth of business establishments to enhance Qatar’s digital ecosystem in key sectors through digital enablement, furthermore creating value for all stakeholders in Qatar’s digital economy,” added Ms. Noor Al Malki, the Project Manager.