By Digital News Asia March 25, 2020
- Offering services on pro-bono basis or discounted rates to SMEs
- SMEs see 3 key issues including staff health, macro/socio-economic support
Following the two-week movement control order (MCO) to combat the COVID-19 threat in Malaysia, launched on 18 March, the Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) has launched a #DigitalvsCovid campaign, marshalling local tech companies to extend digital solutions and services to affected domestic businesses and consumers.
The #DigitalvsCovid campaign’s call to serve the nation received very encouraging responses, particularly by MDEC’s network of GAIN companies consisting of tech startups and scaleups that are recognised for their unique tech innovations and sizeable business footprint, locally and abroad.
“While large corporations have contingency plans to minimise the impact of Covid-19, many SMEs and micro-enterprises may not be able to tide through this global pandemic. One way forward is through automation and digitalisation. We are proud to announce that 80 tech companies are waiting to render their services and MDEC urges entrepreneurs from all industries to leverage on these offerings,” said Surina Shukri (pic, right), CEO of MDEC.
Surina shares that it only took one attempt to rally Malaysian tech companies to ‘Pay It Forward’ during these trying times. Numerous tech companies within and beyond the GAIN network have expressed their sincere interest to offer their services on a pro-bono basis, either through attractive discounts or strategic collaborations.
The comprehensive list of tech solutions and services for SMEs is accessible at mdec.my/home/c19techrelief/ and it will continue to be updated as more tech companies come forward to render their assistance.
Three areas of top concern
Expressing MDEC’s appreciation to the tech companies that have come forward to assist the business community in Malaysia, Surina also shared the top three areas of concern by SMEs that were received by MDEC’s Global Growth Acceleration division since the implementation of the movement control order on 18 March 2020.
“Many SMEs are experiencing interrupted supply-chain movement, delays in business processes that require paperwork, limited tools to engage their stakeholders, constraints in conducting non-cash transactions, as well as challenges in managing a high-volume workforce. Nonetheless, we are confident that our GAIN companies can offer relief to SMEs by resolving some of these difficulties.” explained Surina.
Another concern by SMEs is the well-being of their employees to ensure minimal business disruption. Companies are trying to adequately equip employees with awareness of the Covid-19 pandemic and advocating preventive health and safety measures. Additionally, employers are actively seeking the provision of workforce compensation protection and other benefits for their employees.
“MDEC’s Global Growth Acceleration division will continue to explore more industry-relevant business continuity solutions via digital technologies and drive participation and growth in the digital economy,” said Surina.
MDEC’s #DigitalvsCovid campaign to raise awareness and mitigate against the spread of the Covid-19 threat also launched a series of short videos across its social media channels that encourage a digital approach for businesses to combat Covid-19. The campaign will also work with key Influencers to increase its message penetration, with the first video by Alif Satar already getting over 45,000 views. Further updates will be posted on the MDEC website and all its social media channels.