Wexford business urged to look to cloud technology
Members of the Wexford business community heard of the potential cost of not embracing cloud technology at a networking breakfast hosted recently by cloud telecoms provider Magnet and the Wexford Chamber in the Ferrycarrig Hotel.
Small firms were also urged to become more active in availing of government supports.
While warning that firms outside Dublin were losing competitiveness by their delay in availing of cloud technology, Magnet CEO Mark Kellett noted positively that 32 per cent of small firms in the South East intend investing in their IT infrastructure this year.
However, he pointed out that 90 per cent of SMEs were still using a conventional phone system, which according to Amarach Research could be costing small business in Ireland over €266 million per year.
Much of that could be taken out of the sectors's cost base.
A total of 18 per cent of small firms in the South East say they have implemented a cloud solution of some kind for their business.
Armed with the results of the inaugural Magnet Regional Business Barometer, a nationwide study of over 600 SMEs by Amarach Research, Kellett reported that 62 per cent of small firms in Wexford and the South East are optimistic about the future, with one in 13 planning to open a new premises this year.
However, one third of firms in the South East area do not know who their local public representatives are, and only seven per cent are aware of the technology and business grants available, such as the Enterprise Ireland voucher and the government's Online Trading Voucher.
'Our research shows that 90 per cent of SMEs generally are unaware of the Online Trading Voucher Scheme as a support to engaging in e-commerce,' says Mark Kellett, CEO of Magnet.
'We hope our own Office-In-A-Box package encourages more firms to take advantage of it and improve their competitiveness in the process.'
Tom Banville, from the Wexford Local Enterprise Office added: 'The Online Trading Voucher is a great opportunity for small businesses in County Wexford to avail of substantial funding to help them to get online or improve their online offering.
'I would encourage all small business to review the voucher offering and consider an application.
'Both I and my colleagues in the Local Enterprise Office would be happy to discuss any potential application.'