by HARIZAH KAMEL / Pic by TMR FILE PIX
THE Entrepreneur Development and Cooperatives Ministry (Medac) via its agency the National Entrepreneurship Institute (INSKEN) has successfully assisted almost 8,000 entrepreneurs in digitalising their businesses since January 2020 until the first quarter of this year.
During the period under review, INSKEN helped train a total of 7,773 micro and informal businesses through various training and coaching programmes, including INSKEN Business Training, E-Board programme, INSKEN Masterclass and INSKEN Business Enhancement Programme (BEP).
Its Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar (picture) said the programmes offered by INSKEN, which are conducted online, had received overwhelming response from business operators.
He said this indicates growing awareness among entrepreneurs on the importance of establishing an online presence, not only as a means of survival in today’s post Covid-19 business environment, but also to cater to the increasingly tech savvy consumer market in Malaysia.
A survey conducted by Medac revealed that 57.74% of the respondents admitted to shop more online after the government imposed the second round of Movement Control Order (MCO 2.0), from 19.23% previously.
In addition, 62% of the respondents said they now prefer online transactions – a clear indication that the local consumers are becoming accustomed to e-commerce.
Wan Junaidi pointed out that as a training and coaching expert, INSKEN truly understands the type of assistance, training, coaching and guidance that are suitable for entrepreneurs, namely those in the micro and informal categories.
He said INSKEN training and coaching programmes have a more holistic approach by providing hand-holding and end-to-end solutions to help entrepreneurs in digitalising their business as well as to reap the full benefit of this move.
“It is not just about helping them to set up an online presence. These people also need to be trained on how to operate a successful business online.
“To date, participants of INSKEN’s training programmes have enjoyed an average sales increase of more than 200%,” he said.
Despite the overwhelming response, Wan Junaidi said that limited funding is identified as among the major challenges faced by INSKEN to open its courses to more entrepreneurs.
In view of this, he said Medac is willing to collaborate with other ministries and organisations in developing a comprehensive entrepreneur development courses, which would subsequently contribute towards the development of the nation’s small and medium enterprises (SME) sector.
“Aside from INSKEN, we have other agencies that can assist in the overall development of the country’s SME sector such as Tekun Nasional, SME Corp, Perbadanan Nasional Bhd, UDA Holdings Bhd, Bank Rakyat, SME Bank as well as the Co-operative Commission of Malaysia (SKM),” he added.