Women Entrepreneurs Are Increasingly Active in Using New Technologies
NAFI Research Centre about the results of its study
The level of readiness of women entrepreneurs to digitalisation in business was identified within the fifth phase of Women Business Index. The study was conducted on the initiative of the OPORA RUSSIA Committee for Development of Women's Entrepreneurship and Bank URALSIB joint-stock company supported by the Agency for Strategic Initiatives. NAFI Research Centre shared the results it got during its study.
Digitalisation of business is in the active phase today.
The index of business readiness to digital economy among women entrepreneurs comprises 45 percentage points out of 100 possible.
Women entrepreneurs actively use the internet and mobile communications when running their business. They use data storage and processing services a little rarer.
It is interesting that women entrepreneurs most often use the internet for information search. At the same time, only about two thirds (59%) of women-led companies are represented in the Wide-Area Network.
Fully-featured websites with detailed information about the business, products, and services amount to 26%. Business card websites comprise 33%. More than half of women entrepreneurs surveyed communicate with their clients by means of instant messengers.
The majority of women entrepreneurs (72%) have already switched to electronic document management. 27% still adhere to paper-based document management. 49% of women primarily choose unspecialised measures to authomatise business processes. The share of overall IT-decisions doesn’t exceed 20-30%.
When actively using the internet, almost every fourth woman entrepreneur neglect installing virus protection software on her company’s computers.
Less than half of business organisations have their written information security policy. However, this is an extremely important aspect for successful development of the company. According to experts, 5% of women entrepreneurs faced cyber attacks that resulted in financial losses.
The study made special focus on the topic of development of human capital. Russian companies, in general, pay comparatively little attention to teaching their employees to use digital technologies.
Only 12% among women entrepreneurs sent their employees to attend courses on this topic. 16% supported such initiatives by their workers. One should pay more attention to this aspect.
According to the experts, a governmental programme ‘Digital Economy of the Russian Federation’ is under way in Russia today. Many of women surveyed heard about that. More than half of them believe that the programme positively affects the activities of their companies. In addition, banks and public organisations implement various projects on promotion of financial literacy and introduction of new technologies into business.
“Today, women entrepreneurs are increasingly active in using digital technologies, online tools, and services that help them do business. This trend is typical for market”, commented Konstantin Bobrov, chairperson of the board of the Bank URALSIB.
“That is why we are forming an integrated environment in the bank. That system allows entrepreneurs to use online bank services and other services for bookkeeping, preparation of reports, access to qualified legal aid, etc. It helps address a number of needs at different phases of development of business”, he added.
Anna Repina, news agency of the Eurasian Women’s Community
Translated by Nikolay Gavrilov