In a rapidly evolving technological landscape, small businesses in India are poised to achieve remarkable feats by embracing Cloud & AI technologies. A recent report by Amazon Web Services (AWS), conducted in collaboration with Accenture, sheds light on the immense potential waiting to be unlocked. The findings reveal that this technological embrace could yield annual productivity gains of up to ₹1.6 trillion and create 45.9 million jobs in India by 2030. This transformation promises to reshape various sectors, including healthcare, education, and agriculture, and contribute to achieving the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs).
Cloud Adoption: The Current Scenario
As of now, India’s adoption of essential cloud technologies stands at 28%. This includes services like web-based email and cloud-based storage solutions. While this number signifies significant progress, it also underscores the vast untapped potential. Small businesses hold the key to further advancing cloud adoption and, consequently, addressing some of the most pressing challenges in society.
The Role of Cloud & AI
One of the game-changers in this transformation is generative AI. Small businesses can leverage advanced cloud-enabled technologies like generative AI to accelerate their growth and digital transformation. This shift will enhance their efficiency and open doors to new opportunities and innovations.
Impact on Healthcare
The report indicates that significant job creation is expected in sectors like healthcare. By 2030, cloud-enabled small businesses could facilitate 47 million telehealth consultations in India, unlocking ₹199.5 billion in annual productivity benefits. This translates to improved healthcare access, particularly in remote areas, and contributes to enhancing the population’s overall well-being.
In the education sector, cloud-enabled small businesses have the potential to unlock ₹291.6 billion in annual productivity benefits. This, coupled with the provision of e-learning solutions, could reach 99 million students in India by 2030. Digital education’s power is expanding access and tailoring learning experiences to individual needs, thereby fostering a more knowledgeable and skilled workforce.
Agriculture’s Productivity Boost
Agriculture, a cornerstone of the Indian economy, can benefit immensely. The report estimates that small businesses in this sector can contribute ₹1.1 trillion in annual productivity benefits. This includes streamlining operations, optimizing resource allocation, and adopting data-driven farming practices. This transformation will create a ripple effect felt throughout the food supply chain, extending from farmers to consumers.
Cloud & AI Towards Sustainable Development Goals
Small businesses’ adoption of cloud and AI technologies aligns with the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. These technologies enable remote healthcare consultations. This will enhance access to education, and promote precision agriculture, all of which are critical components of sustainable development. By actively participating in these initiatives, small businesses become key drivers of positive change on a global scale.
The Path Forward
Aaron Hill, Managing Director of Economic Insights at Accenture Strategy and Consulting, emphasizes the immense potential for small businesses to advance their cloud adoption further. This benefits individual enterprises and accelerates the collective ability to address societal challenges. It’s a win-win situation where automation and innovation lead to economic growth and improved quality of life.
Small Businesses’ Embrace of Cloud and AI: A LinkedIn Study
In April 2023, LinkedIn conducted a study that corroborates the findings of the AWS and Accenture reports. The study revealed that Indian small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) invest in cloud and AI technologies to advance their business priorities. A staggering 90% of SMBs allocate budget resources to areas like marketing automation, AI, and online communities. Furthermore, 93% of these businesses acknowledge the potential of AI-powered tools like ChatGPT in aiding their content creation, marketing efforts, and related activities.