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iFortepreneur 4.0 Jadi Ajang Memaksimalkan Potensi UMKM di Indonesia

iFortepreneur 4.0 Showcases the Potential of Indonesian MSMEs 

Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) form an important backbone of the Indonesian economy. According to a 2018 data published by the Ministry of Cooperatives and MSMEs, around 64,2 million people within the country are owners of MSMEs*. Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises also make the largest contribution towards full-time employment in Indonesia, employing 119,6 million people or around 96,92% of the total national workforce**. In addition, MSMEs also contribute 61.97% or 8.500 trillion of the total national GDP***. 

The magnitude of growth and contribution MSMEs have made to the economy has motivated iForte to organize the iFortepreneur 4.0 program. Made in collaboration with Bandung’s Institute of Technology’s School of Business Management, the Iforteperneur 4.0 program aims to provide a vocational program for MSME players packaged as a Digital Business Plan Competition. As a manifestation of iForte's passion in providing the very best in infrastructure connectivity to support digitized lifestyles, this program aims to facilitate well-rounded, sustainable digital transformation within Indonesian MSMEs. 

This year, iFortepreneur 4.0 was held virtually due to the still ongoing COVID-19 Pandemic. Nevertheless, the event saw a sizable amount of participation with around 334 MSME owners submitting their ideas to this competition. From these 334 registrants, 12 finalists were able to successfully move on onto the final stage of the competition. These included Original Coffee (Banda Aceh), Krisbu (Jambi), Postiv.id (Jakarta), Genzy IFI Dry Food (Depok), Jamuin.id (Cianjur), Kafi (Bandung), Natakraf (Bandung), Kain Corak Alam Ecoprint (Magelang), Kebun Tani (Yogyakarta), Fish Gator (Surabaya), Teampal (Bali), dan Timur Mushroom Farm (Polewali Mandar).

After a long journey, the final presentation session of the program gave birth to three winners, namely Fish Gator, an MSME from Surabaya focused on developing IoTs for local aquaculture; Timur Mushroom Farm, an MSME from Polewali Mandar in Sulawesi engaged in oyster mushroom cultivation; as well as  Krisbu, an MSME from Jambi province specializing in selling chips made from processed sugar cane waste.

Although only three MSMEs managed to emerge as winners in this year’s iteration of the competition, several iForte partners have singled out and contacted a sizable number of finalists in order to explore future opportunities for collaboration. In addition, the results of finals have created a large value for the iFortepreneur 4.0 program and brand as a gateway for business opportunities for  developing MSME businesses. iForte is also optimistic that the program, which will open its second series in February 2022, can bring great benefits and become a valuable form of contribution to help Indonesian MSMEs in optimizing their business potential through adapting digital platforms.

Works Cited:

*https://www.djkn.kemenkeu.go.id/artikel/baca/13317/UMKM-Bangkit-Ekonomi-Indonesia-Terungkit.html

**https://databoks.katadata.co.id/datapublish/2021/08/13/kontribusi-umkm-terhadap-ekonomi-terus-meningkat

***https://www.bkpm.go.id/id/publikasi/detail/berita/upaya-pemerintah-untuk-memajukan-umkm-indonesia

Translated by Ignatius Krishnaya Santoso

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The Role of Youth in Digitization

As the future leaders of a nation, youth play a vital role in the social, cultural and economic progress of a country. Within Indonesia, they have historically proven themselves to be an important driving force behind the establishment of the state as well as a unifying link between its citizens. Every year on October 28, the country celebrates the Sumpah Pemuda (Youth Pledge) Day, commemorating the pledge of Indonesian youth made in 1928 to work towards creating an independent, unified Indonesia.

Even within today’s independent Indonesia, new responsibilities are still being demanded from the nation’s youth. As the fourth industrial revolution reaches its apex, various sectors of daily life and industry have shifted towards relying on digital based platforms. As such, digitization has become a key step that both businesses and individuals must embrace in order to survive within this new climate. Youth, in this case, are tasked with becoming agents of change and renewal; answering the challenge of combining existing technological developments with creative, innovative, and solution-based approaches that have strong applications in everyday life.

Digitization aims to facilitate the application of advanced technology and increase productivity and efficiency through the creation of a more efficient processing of information (such as better and smarter software). Currently, this concept has been widely adopted within industries as well as smaller MSMEs (Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises) across the country. This can be seen through the development of technology-based business ideas such as electronic trading services (e-commerce) as well as digitally based consulting services; which in turn have had a positive impact on the Indonesian economy, particularly within its informal sector. This digital transformation is a process that cannot be separated from the role of youth, many of which have served as important driving forces behind such initiatives.

In other words, the role of youth in digitalization can be characterized by their active participation and contribution in the production, consumption, and sharing of digital content. With a 70.7% demographic dividend*, more people of productive age are able to contribute towards the advancement of digital technology within Indonesia. As a leading telecommunications infrastructure service provider in Indonesia, iForte is able to help facilitate such digital transformation initiatives through providing fast, safe, and reliable internet connectivity.

*https://www.beritasatu.com/ekonomi/740489/indonesia-sedang-menikmati-bonus-demografi

Translated by Ignatius Krishnaya Santoso

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SMN sustainability update: SMN Group launches implementation Management & Employee Stock Ownership Program (“MESOP”)

SMN Group, including Protelindo, iForte and subsidiaries, announces the launch and implementation of company-wide MESOP thru an internal town-hall virtual meeting with employees on October 11, 2021. “We want to reward our long-standing employees and we think MESOP is one the best methods to do this. Because we are at the same time aligning interest of employees and management across different legal entities within SMN Group to be in sync with that of SMN shareholders’ interest,” said Aming Santoso President Director and CEO of SMN.

“The shares under the implementation are the 310 million TOWR shares that management asked for shareholders’ blessing during the May 2021 GMS to disseminate as MESOP shares,” explained Adam Gifari SMN VP Director. “The shares are from SMN treasury that company obtained from share buybacks programs approved by GMS in Nov 2019 and May 2020 so governance of share allocation is a management decision. Generally, employees with tenure of 2 years or more will have right to purchase SMN shares at Rp 1000 per share during their good working contribution to SMN Group for the next three years with vesting periods at end of year 3 and year 4. Cost to SMN to do this is fixed with substantial upside from an improved working morale within SMN Group of companies.”

Contact: investor.relations@ptsmn.co.id; investor.relations@protelindo.net

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Event Recap: Walking Together in Good Health

Throughout the month of August, iForte virtually held the first iteration of its charity walk event, "Walking Together in Good Health" (Melangkah Bersama Sehati). Company employees, alongside select clients were challenged to reach 76,000 steps within a month. This goal was to be achieved independently by participants whilst still following local health & safety regulations. Participants could achieve the targeted goal through walking around their homes, or at a running track, etc. For every 76,000 steps reached individually, iForte will allocate 760,000 rupiah to be donated to charity.

At the end of the event, iForte had recorded a total of 11,261,734 participating steps, with more than 100 participants achieving the event's target of 76,000. From those achievers, 13 were able to double their steps from the expected goal and 4 obtained a total of above 200,000 steps. 

We hope that the donations obtained by this event can be of help to those in need. Additionally, we hope that “Walking Together in Good Health” has helped to motivate you in continuing to live healthily, one step at a time.

⁣⁣The collage above feature just a few of those who have participated in iForte’s “Walking Together in Good Health” event.


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The Rise of Indonesia's Creative SMEs

Pt. Iforte Solusi Infotek once again held an online webinar on September 16, 2021 with the theme of "The Rise of Indonesian Creative SMEs (Small-to-Medium Enterprises)". This webinar marks the fifth of Iforte’s webinar series, which was last broadcasted on August 5, 2021 with the theme of "Becoming a Cool Teacher In the Era of Online Learning”.

This webinar presented three speakers and was moderated by nationally-recognized news anchor Senandung Nacita. The first speaker, Destry Anna Sari (Assistant Deputy for Business Consulting and Mentoring at the Ministry of Cooperatives and SMEs), presented an overview of the current state of SMEs within the country with the title "Young Entrepreneurs as Future SMEs". Meanwhile, the second speaker, Selliane Ishak (Director of Digital Economy Governance, Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy), gave a presentation explaining the potential for digitalization within Indonesian SMEs with the title "The Awakening of Creative Economy Actors". The penultimate speaker for the webinar, Daniel Cahyadi (COO and Co-Founder Wahyoo) gave a presentation on the role of digital business entities such as Wahyoo in developing SMEs in the country with the title "Wahyoo: The Awakening of Indonesian Creative SMEs".

The event was opened with remarks from Mr. Rony Ardhitia, Vice President Director of Technology and Operations at Iforte. In his speech, Mr. Roni expressed how this webinar presented a great opportunity for audiences to develop the necessary skills and knowledge to create a more productive, efficient, and strong business ecosystem in Indonesia. The webinar was then followed by the presentation of materials prepared by the participating speakers.

Destry Anna Sari’s presentation began with a brief explanation of the current condition and contribution of SMEs within the Indonesian economy. According to Sari, despite the relatively minimal contribution of local SMEs to the Indonesian economy when compared to similar businesses abroad, they have a large potential to become important cornerstones, allowing for the creation of jobs, economic growth and poverty reduction. Finally, she elaborated about the details of the Ministry’s Collaborative Program in Improving Entrepreneurship Ratio, designed at introducing more businesses into the digital fold.

The second presentation was delivered by Selliane Ishak, who began with an overview of the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on Indonesia's creative sector. Ishak stated how although many businesses within the sector have been negatively affected by the pandemic, enterprises already operating within digital channels had experienced tremendous growth and developments within the same time period. According to Ishak, this shows how pivoting one’s business to the digital economy can be greatly beneficial for SMEs as it can overcome obstacles brought upon by the pandemic. Currently, only 37% of the Indonesian creative sector have attempted to pivot their businesses towards a digital platform; with Ishak expressing the centrality of the pandemic as the perfect opportunity for SMEs wishing to develop their digital presence. She concluded the presentation by explaining the various initiatives and assistance that the Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy can provide for businesses wishing to enroll within the Ministry’s digitization initiative.

The last speaker, Daniel Cahyadi, explained the role of digital businesses in helping to support the development of local MSMEs via his presentation “Wahyoo: The Awakening of Indonesian Creative SMEs”. He started by explaining how for the majority of Indonesian MSMEs accessing financial services such as bank loans and grants can be extremely difficult. This has prevented many entrepreneurs from initiating their business ideas due to being unable to obtain the appropriate funds. Daniel went on to explain how this could be overcome by shifting businesses to digital platforms, as they can circumnavigate many of the logistical problems present within traditional enterprises. He then explained how platforms like Wahyoo help MSMEs to digitally pivot in a sustainable manner via monetary loans, training and support.

The webinar was followed by a question and answer session that lasted until the end of the event, where the webinar was closed with an announcement introducing Iforte’s “Ifortepreneur 4.0” business competition event; delivered by Mr. Victor Sihombing, Iforte’s head of Marketing Communications.

You can watch the full webinar on the Iforte’s official Youtube channel.

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Webinar Recap: Becoming an Exciting Educator in the Era of Online Learning

As we know, the coronavirus pandemic has caused drastic changes in the way that we conduct educational activities, with many educational institutions being forced to abandon traditional methods in favor of a wholly digital style of teaching. Although the concept of digital education is not a new one, the unprecedented scale in which institutions and figures have been forced to adapt them has brought upon a dearth of knowledge and familiarity among educators. While it is true that online based learning can provide a number of benefits towards both teachers and students, they also come with a number of considerable challenges. In order to create a better, healthier digital education system, educators must rise up to the various intricacies, challenges and quirks of working and within a wholly digital learning environment. One of the most effective ways to do this now is to develop new effective communication methods that translate into online platforms.

As such, Iforte’s latest webinar, entitled “Becoming an Exciting Educator in the Era of Online Learning” seeks to establish ways in which educators could create a fun, effective and exciting online learning experience for students. To do so, the company invited the help of Becky Tumewu, founder of TALKINC to come on as a guest speaker and provide insight into what exactly good digital communication entails. Becky herself is a renowned former tv presenter and radio host, with thirty years of experience as a public speaker on various media institutions. Her company, TALKINC, is dedicated to training and improving communication skills for people in a wide variety of industries, most notably within the education sector.

According to Tumewu, one of the most important factors in determining an enjoyable online teaching experience would be an educator’s ability to instill a positive, open, mindset within their students in spite of current circumstances. If an educator is able to mentally adapt to the situation, viewing the coronavirus situation as an opportunity for new ideas instead of a missed chance, it will have a multiplier effect on the amount of enthusiasm and receptiveness students have towards learning a particular subject. Students and caretakers/parents look up to educators to guide the curriculum and shape the overall effectiveness of their education, and by taking control of a class’s overall mood and mindset, an educator may have ensured a positive, effective learning experience for the rest of the semester. However, Becky repeats that such an initiative must come from one’s own individual will in order to be effective.

Becky also notes how not all educational facilities are equal, and how not everyone is prepared to fully transition into a wholly digital based learning curriculum. Certain institutions will not have the same capabilities as others to create a well-rounded, technologically sound online learning experience. As such, educators must be able to adjust and accommodate their classes with the available resources that they currently have in store. Furthermore, this also means that it is up to teachers to make their lessons more enjoyable and exhilarating to students through a number of different tools and tricks, as conveying content effectively to students needs to be done in a creative manner instead of solely relying on one speaking. One example Tumewu puts forward would be one’s ability in maximizing the communicative medium they are using (zoom, skype). She states how if one is not able to sufficiently handle one’s communicative medium of choice, it will be more difficult to keep the level of interest in students at a consistent level.


 

Another key to creating a positive, knowledge-open mindset within students is through good communication, as good communication ensures that students are able to exactly understand what teachers wish to convey. According to Tumewu, good communication is focused, consistent, and clear; while also containing a clear structure consisting of an introduction, content and conclusion. Another part of effective communication lies in one's visual language. Within a wholly visual context such as online learning, visual cues have become crucial for determining the overall mood and effectiveness of an education session. Tumewu advises to control one’s facial expression, as not to appear too outwardly negative. Hand gestures and sitting posture can similarly become very effective when attempting to provide visual emphasis and/or encouraging or cautioning students. 

When interacting with students, Tumewu also notes that educators should take an active style of listening, meaning that among other things, they should not interrupt students while they are talking, instead listening and focusing on the points being made. Active listening also means maintaining eye contact while having a positive, attentive body language that acknowledges the effort made by students. Active listening means that you respect the thoughts and initiatives of those being educated, and in overall, creates a more positive, conducive experience. In addition to this, Tumewu introduced the concept of Head Heart Hand; a communication approach that relies on three crucial steps: 1) establishing a rapport and seeking empathy with your listener (heart); 2) appeal to your listener's -- and your own -- desire for proof points by offering supportive evidence (head) and 3) remembering to ask your listener to take action (hand). Through utilizing a combination of these methods, Becky states that students will feel more approachable and conducive towards learning.

Lastly, Becky stresses the fact that virtual space comes with its own sets of regulations and etiquette that both educators and learners may not be used to. One has to make sure that one’s technology is working, as constant disruptions will greatly impair the effectiveness of a class. This means making sure that one’s camera angle/position, lighting, sound are all in working order. In addition, educators should encourage students to actively engage the topic at hand, whether it be through opening their cameras and asking questions, or creating interesting activities in order to freshen up the overall pace of the classroom. Also, in order to minimize disruptions, educators have to make class rules abundantly clear. If one needs to involve the help of caretakers then Becky suggests doing so as caretakers often can reach out towards learners in ways that a teacher could not. As a final reminder, Tumewu encourages teachers to be constantly creative when communicating with today’s students, as many of them, due to their digital-savvy nature, often have a drastically different approach to learning. Educators need to understand and adapt to these differences. Only through doing so will they be able to establish a positive relationship with their students and create an effective digital learning experience.




 

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Webinar Recap: Supply Chains in the Digital Era

Within the world of business, supply chains form an important backbone of successful companies; they represent the web between companies and suppliers that help produce and distribute goods and services towards consumers. 

Proper management of one’s supply chain is imperative to the success of one’s business, especially in the context of today’s pandemic stricken world. When a company’s supply chain works effectively it can reduce their overall operating cost while at the same time dramatically increasing profits. 

In order to achieve this, companies need to design and implement new initiatives within their respective logistical networks that are able to adapt to and fit the needs of the contemporary digitally-fueled consumer. Only by doing so will they be able to maximize their reach and involvement in today’s market. 

IForte’s latest webinar, ‘The Future of Supply Chain 4.0’, held on the 22nd of July 2021, explored the needs and potential challenges facing institutional supply chains in the 21st century. With the advent of the coronavirus pandemic and its subsequent negative effects on traditional logistical networks, the need for a strong, digitally savvy supply chain network is stronger than ever. Such a sentiment was expressed by speaker I Nyoman Pujawan, professor of Supply Chain Engineering at the 10th Nopember Institute of Technology in Surabaya, who in his presentation stated the importance of businesses being able to adapt to current climates and trends if they wished to keep up with contemporary demands and expectations. In order to effectively do so, Pujawan believes that every facet of a company’s logistics operations needs to integrate digital technologies. This includes sectors ranging from production, warehousing, transportation as well as sales and marketing. 

The need to adapt to a new form of logistics management was similarly echoed by Kyatmaja Lookman, CEO of Lookman Djaja Logistics, who expressed how institutions and individuals involved in logistics management needed adjust and tweak their approach in order to accommodate these changes should they risk falling behind in efficiency and effectiveness. In particular, much of the human aspects found within existing structures should be tweaked to accommodate new changes. 

Okin R. Purba, Member of the Indonesian Logistics Association, expressed how the digitization of supply chains has resulted in a number of positive effects on businesses. Firstly, Purba mentions how digitally-based supply chains, which utilize robotic equipment such as sensors to support the production process, will make the company more efficient in running its business as they allow for a faster, more efficient flow of information whilst at the same time also increasing productivity and lower operational costs. 

Furthermore, if a company has a successful digitally integrated supply chain then all processes from manufacturing, production, to distribution to customers will be connected in real time, allowing for greater control, efficiency and maintenance.

Another advantage, continued Okin, in the use of advanced digital technology softwares such as AI and machine learning within existing supply chains, is that they allow companies to develop more innovative management strategies when developing new products that may be predicted to be purchased or needed by consumers in the next 10-20 years. "Customers can easily monitor supply chain activities, speed, planning, design, forecasting, product quality and status. We can even predict via analyzed data what will be in large demand in the future. In addition, the use of advanced machines and technology can also reduce the number of workplace related accidents," he concluded.

Lookman adds that digitization incentives innovation, synchronization and collaboration between parties within existing supply changes while also pushing technological synergy, which in turn allows for a more efficient logistical model. 

However, while technologies such as IoT (internet of things), cloud, and Artificial Intelligence (AI) come with a large number of benefits, they are also host to a number of new demands and potential problems that companies must successfully navigate. For example, these technologies are often prone to system failures and bugs, which may put the entire supply chain out of commision for an extended period of time. Companies adapting such technologies must be ready to have a number of contingency plans should such a situation arise. Furthermore, existing parties within an institution’s supply chain will need to be adjusted and fixed in order to accommodate these new technologies. Such a shift may take out a large number of time, resources and manpower from existing operations, which in the short-term may prove highly costly to enterprises.

Another major impact from the digitization of supply chains would be the diminished involvement of human workers as machines take center stage in much of the day to day operations of these networks. According to Purba, this can result in a number of negative consequences for institutions making this shift as they will have to downsize their production numbers and labour pool whilst in the process of installing new technologies.

In the end, balance needs to be found between adapting artificial intelligence and human ingenuity, and according to Purba, this will be a key factor in creating an effective, well-managed supply chain for the future. While digital tools and artificial intelligence make for powerful and effective tools, proper management of these tools from human parities is needed to make sure that these resources do not fail or create new problems. 


 

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Personal Data Protection and Cyber Security Threats in Fintech

The Financial Services Authority (OJK) defines fintech as "an innovation in the financial services business that uses technology usage." Technology (software, the internet, communication, and cutting-edge computing) is being implemented and used to improve a company's banking and financial services. There are 5 types of fintech: Peer-to-Peer (P2P) Lending & Crowdfunding, Investment Risk Management, Payment, Clearing & Settlement, and Market Aggregator. With the rapid advancement of technology, anyone may quickly receive information about fintech in various media.

In Indonesia, the positive trend towards fintech has been evident over the last two years. The overall Fintech distribution in 2020 increased by 91.3 percent over the previous year, reaching 155.9 trillion rupiah, with a total accumulated borrower account of 43.57 million accounts. According to data on the OJK official website, as of June 10, 2021, there are 125 registered and regulated fintech peer-to-peer lending or fintech lending enterprises.

The figure is not surprising, given that digital transactions have become one of the community's critical requirements throughout the pandemic. With the help of fintech, we no longer need to make personal contact or travel to other places to complete transactions. Instead, all we need is a device and access to the internet. This convenience, however, is not without risk. As the number of digital transactions grows, so do the risks of cybercrime.

Teguh Arifiyadi, The Acting Director of Informatics Application Control of Kominfo RI, during an iForte Cyber Security webinar on June 24th 2021, stated that from 2019 to April 2021, there was a rise in Personal Data Protection cases by a total of 29 cases, 92% of which were cases caused by cyber-attacks. The Directorate of Information Application Control has dealt with 21 of these occurrences of personal data leakage. This data once again proves that as the number of digital transactions grows, so do the chances of cybercrime.

The recent purchase and sale of consumer data by a well-known e-commerce corporation also upset Indonesian people not long ago. Irresponsible websites leak customers' data, including personal information such as social security numbers, credit card details, and so on. As a result, it is time for data security and digital transactions to become a critical plan that must be implemented quickly in order to avoid becoming even more harmful in the future.

Dr. Bisyron Wahyudi added in the same webinar that one type of cybersecurity concern in fintech is Transaction Security, which involves security threats when executing transactions. The second is Data Security, which refers to protecting personal information, and the third is Cyber Security. These issues, he added, include preventing unwanted digital access and focusing on the compliance system in providing legal protection for fintech users' data.

Farman Kosim, Senior Principal Security Engineer at GDP Labs, highlighted that today's fintech faces various cybersecurity concerns. First, there's Application Security or system flaws that allow data to be stolen through gaps. Second, malware or cyber-attacks, then third is the system's weakness caused by human error, for example, a database placed on a public cloud, making it easier for data to be misused by irresponsible people. Fourth, data theft, and last, money laundering, is usually the ultimate goal of data theft perpetrators.

Now, the most important key consideration is how to maintain cybersecurity. Digital technology users at all levels of society, including financial industry operators, are expected to take this seriously. According to Dr. Bisyron, there are at least five ways to prevent fintech consumer data theft.

  1. Data identification, the process of determining which data needs to be secured.
  2. Data classification, which divides data into three categories: confidential, public, and internal fintech.
  3. Data Securing, an integrated process for securing data.
  4. Endpoint security, such as antivirus and anti-spam software.
  5. Data Breach Detection, a type of early detection that alerts users when there is a data leak.

During the same webinar, AKBP Silvester Simamora, Kanit 4 Sub-Directorate 2 of the Directorate of Cyber Crime (Dit Tipidsiber Bareskrim Polri), said that companies must consistently take preventive actions to minimize risk, such as improving governance of information technology systems and continuing to renew the growth of technology assets information. Not only that, but they also should improve their understanding of information technology security. These factors are critical in reducing the risk of cyberattacks, especially when dealing with threats that aren't discovered right away.

On the other hand, we as consumer must as well be willing to accept reliable cybersecurity information. We could get helpful information and learn from a variety of reliable sources. For example, in the case of fintech, do not simply enter personal information into a firm without first checking whether the fintech company is registered with the OJK. You should also be cautious when using public wi-fi for transactions or installing questionable apps that steal data, and so on. Cybercrime prevention must be taken seriously by all parties involved.

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Digitalization, the Key of SMEs to Increase Productivity

SMEs provide a significant contribution to Indonesia's economic growth as they employ a large number of people. Despite their great potential for accelerating the economy, SMEs are one of the sectors impacted by the pandemic. What has to be changed by SME organizers to enable their businesses to survive and even thrive during the crisis?

Small and medium-sized companies (SMEs) are productive economic companies founded by people or commercial entities that are not affiliated with or subsidiaries of a large or small corporation. The overall net value or yearly sales of SMEs ranges from Rp300,000,000.00 (three hundred million rupiah) to Rp50,000,000,000.00 (fifty billion rupiah).

The lack of technology utilization is one problem that is still preventing SMEs in Indonesia from achieving their full potential. Many SMEs have not yet adopted digitalization and remain focused on conventional purchasing and selling activities. Given the fact that digitalization can be applied to many types of sectors, including SMEs, this absolutely could make things like promotion, marketing, sales, distribution, and even transaction monitoring easier. SME products can have a broader scope and be accessed flexibly, anytime, anywhere, using innovative technology. Even the 2020 Asia Pacific SMB Digital Maturity Study Report estimates that digitizing SMEs in Indonesia will increase GDP by $160-164 billion in 2024, contributing to the nation's economic recovery after Covid-19.

Due to the rising number of limitations imposed by the pandemic, SMEs must be more creative in their business development, for example, by adding sales and marketing channels to online platforms. Many products can be promoted using social media and marketplaces to reach a larger audience. Not only that, but even SMEs can use the internet to search for information on raw materials, packaging, and product delivery to customers. We can even embrace the momentum of a pandemic as a turning point for SMEs to migrate from conventional systems to digital ecosystems, thanks to technological advancements.

In addition to making the business more efficient, the use of technology in establishing SMEs can save a lot of money from a financial standpoint. First, there is no need to pay rent for physical stores that demand a significant amount of operating capital. SMEs simply need to rely on factories or warehouses to manufacture and package things before posting them on social media or on the marketplace and sending them to the customers. Second, all existing transactions can be more properly recorded digitally, making calculating net profits much easier.

When it comes to digitalization, it is closely tied to connectivity. iForte, one of Indonesia's telecommunications infrastructure service providers, is the ideal solution for fast, secure, and reliable connectivity. With the slogan "Connectivity for Better Life," iForte has served more than 1400 companies from various industry segments and would, of course, be ready to help various SMEs in Indonesia.

In conclusion, SMEs must be willing to adapt in order to survive during a crisis, one of which is migrating to digital platforms. However, a persistent effort is required, such as education and training of digitalization. But after they are digitally literate, it will be easier to survive and recover from the crisis.

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Development of PMO & Data Quality Framework at iForte Solusi Infotek

Project Management Office (PMO) & Data Quality is one of the concept in project management. The development of the telecommunications industry is currently undergoing changes by transforming into the world of digitalization. This can be seen from the increasing variety of new product services that are being introduced quickly to the consumers and with the development of information technology and industry 4.0. This condition will increase the intensity of business competition in the telecommunications service industry, especially in Indonesia, where every organization is demanded to immediately reassess both internal and external business strategies which aim to provide service and customer satisfaction and also create business sustainability. 

In line with the company's business strategy, one of the most significant developments in recent years is the formalization of the Project/Program Management Office (PMO) implementation, which is becoming increasingly important for organizations in dealing with project management and customer service needs. Due to the beneficial effects of implementing PMO, an increasing number of organizations are choosing to form a PMO to support and manage project management efforts. 

Project Management Office (PMO)

The need for a timely response to market changes, customer demand, and technological improvements makes an organization or company to develop its human resource skills, with knowledge and understanding of project management, so that the company's business development can run more effectively and efficiently in accordance with Good Corporate Governance (GCG). One of the efforts to implement and develop project organizational governance is the establishment of a Project Management Office (PMO) work unit. PMO is responsible for integrating all work units to carry out the agreed governance and business processes. Thus, PMO is a work unit or department that develops methodologies and institutionalizes project management governance practices. 

Based on the definition from the Project Management Institute (PMI), the Project Management Office (PMO) which is also referred to as the Project Management Department is an organizational structure that standardizes the governance processes associated with the project and facilitates various resources, methodologies, standards, and techniques. And based on the PMO Global Alliance, PMO is a physical entity within an organization that centrally carries out functions related to projects, programs, or portfolio management activities. PMO can be interpreted as a specific need for the stakeholders, this makes the structure and configuration of the PMO unique to each organization. 

The objective of project management is to focus on achieving the project objectivity plan in the short term, while the objective of PMO is to focus on supporting the implementation of projects and programs so that they are aligned with project targets in terms of scope, time, and cost that established in the early stages of planning. PMO also serves to ensure that the results and benefits of a project or program are achieved in accordance with the objectives of company management. 

At the operational level, PMO provides basic support to ensure that each individual in the project runs or carries out the project professionally and properly by applying the principles of project management governance that are widely accepted and agreed upon by all stakeholders. At the tactical level, PMO adds further value through multi-project coordination and management of inter-project dependencies. This includes the integration of resources throughout the project and ensuring that project management disciplines are adhered to and properly implemented. 

The PMO strategy for organizational excellence will involve all operational and tactical aspects that are equipped with the authority to prioritize projects in relation to company goals and strategies as well as to provide management with insight into the feasibility of project investment through strategic assessments and potential business risks. 

Development and Implementation of PMO & Data Quality at iForte Infotek Solutions  

iForte Solusi Infotek has implemented PMO & Data Quality to facilitate the increased success of a project through a consistent business process of developing procedures and work tools based on aspects of scope, quality, cost, time, and customer satisfaction. The PMO is responsible for assisting and maintaining the company's focus on the qualitative and quantitative aspects of project management. 

Supported by consistent tools, business processes, and competent resources, iForte Solusi Infotek will provide a higher project success rate, through more effective project implementation and more efficient project costs to increase profits and maintain the company's business continuity. 

In terms of development, planning, and implementation of PMO in iForte Solusi Infotek, PMO & Data Quality and all work units will be integrated and synergized by:

1. Establishing PMO & Data Quality visions and strategies

PMO & Data Quality was formed to carry out business activities in connection with the implementation of project management at iForte Solusi Infotek, where the implementation will involve various divisions or work units, namely Sales, Project, Operational, Finance & Accounting and IT.

2. Preparing PMO & Data Quality program plans

The PMO & Data Quality program plan is to support the implementation of projects and programs so that they can be aligned with project targets related to scope, time, and cost which are established in the early stages of planning and to ensure that the results and benefits of the project or program are achieved in accordance with the objectives of company management. 

PMO & Data Quality performs a process of improvement and development of data in a project carried out through consistent and sustainable governance and business processes. The correct data quality and business processes from a project or program will generate the right reports and analysis, to be used by iForte Solusi Infotek as Business Performance & Analysis. 

3. Establishing plans and priorities

The big problem faced by iForte Solusi Infotek in the early stages of planning and prioritizing PMO & Data Quality aims to improve the implementation of project management for the better. In its implementation, PMO & Data Quality will carry out a process of identification, analysis, solution, and evaluation of a problem.   

4. Assisting and facilitating project organization

PMO & Data Quality applies a precise and consistent methodology to manage project management in the aspects of cost, time, scope, and quality of projects or programs at iForte Solusi Infotek.

5. Sharing knowledge

PMO & Data Quality also accommodates the process of sharing knowledge acquired in a project or program to all related work units at iForte Solusi Infotek to ensure better performance and results for future projects.

After the operation and implementation of PMO & Data Quality, to maintain the continuity of the iForte Solusi Infotek business that is in line with the company's vision and mission, supervision, maintenance, and improvement of work patterns through a periodic audit process will be carried out by collecting and analyzing metrics as part of the project results or program.

By Nia Puspitasari, Head of PMO & Data Quality, iForte Solusi Infotek

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