Over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, Canadian businesses have turned to digital technologies to help keep them working and selling. Technology has been a key lifeline amid a rapidly shifting business and public health environment. The most digitally intensive businesses have been more resilient than the economy at large, suffering smaller drops in revenue and employment than less digitally intensive sectors. Yet not all Canadian businesses are able to take advantage of digital technologies. Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), in particular, suffer from lower levels of digital maturity than their larger peers, meaning they miss out on the significant business benefits that come with higher levels.
In his recent report for the Brookfield Institute, Thomas Goldsmith highlighted how increasing the overall level of digital maturity of the country’s SMEs could have a significant, positive impact on individual businesses, local communities, and the wider economy in Canada. He is currently supporting the Brookfield Institute on follow up research that is taking a sectoral deep dive into the construction industry to better understand the firm level constraints, considerations and skills implications that go into decisions around investing in digital technologies and processes.
Download the slides in PDF format: TABE Webinar: Digital Maturity in SMEs
Brookfield Institute Report: Picking up Speed: Digital Maturity in Canadian SMEs and Why Increasing it Matters
Dr. Thomas Goldsmith is an independent researcher and policy consultant collaborating with the Brookfield Institute. Tom works with innovation-focused organizations to help them understand public policy, and create coalitions and partnerships to help build an inclusive innovation economy in Canada. Tom was previously Policy Director, Innovation and Technology for the Toronto Region Board of Trade. Before moving to Canada, Tom led the digital trade policy workstream for techUK, the UK’s largest technology business association, and was a policy adviser for the Royal Society, the UK’s national academy of sciences. Tom holds a Ph.D. in History from the University of East Anglia.
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