The Government presents a Plan of Digitization of SMEs recognizing the ‘limited impact’ of other previous similar plans
Last May the CONETIC (Spanish Confederation of Information Technology, Communications and Electronics Companies) again requested the government, after checking the havoc that the pandemic was beginning to cause among Spanish companies, to approve a Digital Transformation Plan.
This should especially include SMEs, as they were the economic sector that employs 49.58% of workers in Spain, and whose weight in our economy is five points above the European average.
Now, eight months later, the Government has presented three plans with the aim of advancing “the deployment of the # EspañaDigital2025 Agenda”, for which they will mobilize more than 11,000 million euros in the next two years.
And one of those plans has been precisely the Digitization of SMEs (PDF), which contemplates a public investment of 4,656 million euros and aims to reach 1,500,000 SMEs (that is, approximately half of the total number of small and medium-sized companies in Spain).
“Limited impact” of previous plans
The document states that “there are many programs and agendas already in progress that aim to digitize of the business fabric “but acknowledges that” so far they have had a limited impact.
Said programs -among which the Strategic Framework in SME policy 2030, the Strategy for the Internationalization of the Spanish Economy 2017-2027 or the National Connected Industry 4.0 Strategy is explicitly mentioned- have lacked, according to the new Plan, “the precise scale” and “a good diagnosis“.
It aims to achieve that e-commerce accounts for 25% of the business volume of SMEs in 2025 (right now it is less than 10%)
The ‘Digital Toolkit’
According to the Secretary of State for Digitalization and Artificial Intelligence, the most important project included in the plan is called #DigitalToolkit, endowed with a public endowment of almost 3,000 million euros:
“ a program that offers the ability to provide digital tools and skills to companies with the aim of creating a quality seal #pyme digital “.
The objective of the ‘Digital Toolkit’ is none other than to help integrate in SMEs a set of ‘basic digitization packages’: training, website, cybersecurity, e-commerce, digital marketing, customer management system (CRM), resource management system (ERP), etc.
Implementing all of the above, it seeks to promote electronic commerce, the digitization of relations with the Administration, and the development of internal paperless processes (such as electronic invoicing).
Other pillars of the Plan
Two other fundamental elements of the Plan are the ‘Connectivity Bonds’ and the ‘Agents of Change’:
Connectivity Bonuses: With a budget of 50 million euros, their objective is to provide aid to SMEs so that they can have an Internet connection and thus increase productivity through remote work
Agents of Change: With a budget of 300 million euros, it seeks to finance the incorporation of professionals in ‘digital transformation’ to SMEs, who must previously have been trained in the Expert Program, also integrated into the Digitization Plan.