LEADS Best practices

Success and challenges in reaching SMEs for digital transformation


Industry collaboration


Labour force employed


Stefan Voigt, Director, Mittelstand-Digital Zentrum Magdeburg

  • Digitalisation support for SMEs in Saxony-Anhalt through the “Mittelstand-Digital” Initiative funded by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action.
  • Mittelstand-Digital has to offer competent and provider-neutral contact points for information, awareness-raising and qualification to regional SMEs.
  • The Mittelstand-Digital initiative provides free tailored materials, such as check-ups, talks, offline workshops and seminars, eLearning, and blended learning options, as well as mobile consultation up to three times, mini projects, and convoy support.
  • These include”digitisation tasting” workshops, showcasing technology through an escape room experience, and providing webinars and deep dive workshops at different technical levels.
  • It offers service at 3 levels: Digitalization-related lectures; Underlining with examples from practice; Accompanying demonstrators to touch.
  • Overcoming issues common among SMEs, such as the lack of time and resources available to allocate to digital transformation ventures.
  • SMEs’ limited communication channels and geographical reach beyond the Saxony-Anahlt region hinder the exchange of knowledge, expertise and best practices in the implementation of digital technologies.
Key takeaways
  • Show the bigger picture: Bring a series of events to the market instead of single workshops, giving detailed information and context, and allow participants to register separately based on their availability and needs.
  • Work with multipliers to reach the target group.
  • Ride the wave: Use the ChatGPT-Hype, show what is already possible and give concrete hints for different use cases of digital transformation.
  • Provide contact information and optimise search engine results for the target audience.