Intelligent SME.tech Issue 25 - Page 29

intelligent

// FEATURE //

HE WORLD IN 2022 is more

T global and more digital than ever before . These two changes have created a new wave of opportunities for businesses to grow around the world ; SMEs are no exception . Our latest research identified that the majority ( 85 %) of SME decisionmakers in the UK are already planning to take advantage of these opportunities .

But are these opportunities open to everyone , or only for those who have a tech-savvy mindset and the global infrastructure in place to support an international presence ?
Setting sights further afield
Planning to go global and achieving it are two quite different things . While the majority of UK SMEs see the benefit of international expansion , it ’ s not always clear to them that they should prioritise getting there .
Stated priorities in international expansion vary quite dramatically among UK SMEs . Half prioritise winning new customers over all else when planning their expansion . Others feel differently though with 42 % citing sourcing new suppliers or growing their team as higher priorities .
There is more consistency in the types of roles that businesses believe that they will need to successfully grow across borders . Roughly 80 % of UK SMEs said they would prioritise finance talent and salespeople . Marketers , developers , HR and engineers also remain in high demand .
Accommodating growth
Identifying an opening in the market is only the first hurdle . Executing against an expansion plan requires SMEs to identify the local needs they have to meet , the barriers that exist to their growth and their own capability or resourcing gaps .
Growing internationally requires businesses to satisfy the expectations of local talent , customers and suppliers . By offering preferred payment methods or supporting local currencies straightforwardly and costeffectively , you are more likely to build brand loyalty with new and existing customers ,

70 % OF SMES ADMIT THAT THEY NEED TO MODERNISE THEIR DIGITAL SYSTEMS BEFORE THEY CAN PROCEED WITH EXPANSION PROJECTS .
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