Generally Eclectic

Economics
Small Buiness Development
Tanzania Small Business Knowledge Project

Executive Summary

The proposed Tanzania Business Knowledge Project would apply the digital revolution to business development in Tanzania by:

  1. Assembling generic basic business how-to knowledge documents from government and quasi-government organizations in North America and organizing the documents into an integrated, editable format.
  2. Adapting the North American knowledge for utilization in Tanzania.
  3. Making the documents relevant to a Tanzania audience by translating them into Swahili.
  4. Developing Swahili video and audio materials based on the content in the documents and other sources.
  5. Distributing the documents, videos and audios primarily through a website but also through other digital distribution mechanisms.

The project would be effective because:

  1. It would have the potential to reach and benefit a large and growing Tanzanian audience.
  2. The development costs would not be large, and the ongoing costs would be low.
  3. The project would be foundational for business development in Tanzania since:
    1. It would support the development of more effective business advisory services provided by the Government of Tanzania, non-government organizations, and private business advisers.
    2. It would provide a base for the development of business training programs from colleges and universities and for the incorporation of business knowledge content into non-business training courses.
  4. The project would be foundational since the knowledge base and the Tanzanian experience would provide a model for business development initiatives in other jurisdictions.

The project costing would be based on the following:

  1. Phase One - Development would involve
    1. 75 person days for knowledge assembly.
    2. 3.5 Tanzanian person-years and related costs such as salaries, office space, office support, computers, internet access, computer software, travel, and video camera.
    3. Cash expenditures for translation ($24,000) and promotions.
  2. Phase Two-Ongoing Operations would have a minimum annual requirement of involve, at a minimum, 1.0 one-year of salary plus related costs.

Background

"Business development" is normally defined in terms of (1) increasing the number of business starts, (2) decreasing the number of business disappearances, (3) increasing the number of business expansions, and (4) decreasing the number of contractions. "Business development" is important because it (1) increases the number of jobs and incomes directly in the affected businesses and indirectly in supplier companies, (2) provides goods and services, and (3) increases a country’s foreign exchange when the goods and services are sold abroad or displace goods and services that are imported. Many organizations seek to support the "business development", including government agencies and not-for profit organizations such as business associations and international development organizations. Within "business development", there Is a focus on small businesses, because in comparison with larger businesses, small businesses typically (1) have a greater need for help, (2) provide a more effective platform for creative, innovative and entrepreneurial individuals to utilize their talents; (3) are more flexible and dynamic, and (4) have greater potential for growth.

The standard mechanisms for "small business development" include (1) providing grant or tax incentives for individuals to start or expand businesses; (2) influencing the rules and regulations related to small business, either to equalize the regulatory environment between small and large businesses or to make it easier for small businesses to comply with rules and regulations; (3) creating the market for small business products and services through government procurement policies; (4) encouraging entrepreneurial networks and mentor relationships; (5) providing problem-solving services in areas such as technology, finance and marketing; (6) using real estate developments and zoning to create synergistic clusters of small businesses; and (7) trying to increase the capacity of entrepreneurs to start and expand their businesses.

All mechanisms have their place; however, increasing the entrepreneurial capacity of individuals comes first. Without capacity development, none of the other ways to support the development of small businesses is likely to be effective.

To effect capacity development, these organizations typically rely on transferring knowledge related to small business to individual entrepreneurs. It is useful to look at the knowledge transfer activities of these organizations in terms of these questions:

  1. What knowledge is to be transferred?
  2. What are the transfer mechanisms?
  3. Who specifically is the target for knowledge transfer activities?

Understanding the answers to these questions allows for the identification of opportunities and gaps.

What Knowledge is To Be Transferred?

For organizations trying to effect "business development" through knowledge transfer, it is useful to know specifically what knowledge is to be transferred. This specificity (1) defines capacity, (2) empowers all employees in the business development organization to understand and participate in knowledge transfer activities, (3) clarifies for those financing the business development organizations their understanding of what they are paying for, and (4) clarifies for targets of the transfer, the knowledge they will be getting.

The knowledge is of a "how-to" character and deals with key aspects of starting or expanding a business, including how-to evaluate a business idea; develop a business plan; obtain financing; select a business location; market goods and services; hire, train and motivate employees; and manage revenues and expenses.

There are three types of this "how-to" knowledge. First, there is "generic" knowledge that is relevant to all businesses, regardless of industry and location. Second, there is "location-specific" knowledge (e.g. country, region or city). Third, there is "industry-specific" knowledge (e.g. manufacturing, retail and agriculture). For business development organizations, the first priority and starting point should be "generic" information, since it is useful to all businesses.

The generic information is available at various levels, starting with basic and getting progressively more complex. For business development organizations, the first priority and starting point should be the "basic" level.

This "how-to", "generic", "basic" information is widely available in North America largely free of charge. Key sources include:

  1. The Small Business Administration within the Government of the United States. The "Starting a Business" section within site map https://www.sba.gov/sitemap provides pointers to about 115 documents. Under American copyright laws, these documents are in the public domain and can be copied freely.
  2. The Government of Canada has developed approximately 172 documents that can be found through the website https://www.canada.ca/en/services/business.html . Under Canadian copyright law, the Government of Canada retains copyright over the documents, but the Government of Canada allows copying for non-commercial purposes.
  3. The Business Development Bank of Canada, an entity within the Government of Canada, has developed about 157 documents that can be found by drilling through its website https://www.bdc.ca/en/articles-tools/pages/default.aspx . Copying may require the Bank's permission. The Bank may be ready to grant permission for a worthy, non-competitive purpose, particularly if there is recognition of the Bank's contribution.

The websites have addressed the issues entrepreneurs will face as they go through the stages of business development: idea conceptualization; business start up; business operations; business growth and expansion; innovation and research; and business exits and continuity planning.

Click Here to see the topics from these websites placed under an organized outline with an attempt at initial integration. The sources of the topics (Government of Canada, Small Business Administration, Business Development Bank of Canada) are indicated. This provides a starting point in defining the knowledge to be transferred. Collectively, this knowledge represents North American best practices for generic, how-to, basic, business knowledge.

Clearly, not all components will be relevant in Tanzania. Components dealing with North American regulations, statistics and government programs and services need replacement; some research could fill these gaps. In addition, some components would require the development of Tanzanian best practices; a systematic interview process with Tanzanian experts and successful entrepreneurs could fill these components.

This how-to basic business business knowledge can be presented in a variety of digital ways, including (1) short, single-topic formats (documents up to 4 pages, short videos and audios, social media pages), (2) comprehensive all-topic formats (e-books, audio books, TV and radio series, documentaries, on-line lecture courses and programs), and (3) intermediate multi-topic but not comprehensive formats.

What are the Transfer Mechanisms?

There are a number of potential knowledge-transfer mechanisms. These mechanisms can be divided between digital and non-digital. Digital distribution mechanisms include (1) the internet, which provides distribution opportunities through websites and social media such as Facebook, Youtube and Pinterest, (2) the distribution of digital storage media such as memory sticks and CDs for installation on standalone computers and local networks, (3) television, (4) radio and (5) telephone systems.

Prior to the “digital revolution”, non-digital content and distribution mechanisms were the only ones available. They included:

  1. One-on-one consultations between a business expert and potential or existing entrepreneurs. These consultations include in-person meetings and phone conversations. This mechanism is labour intensive and typically limited to the expertise of the expert.
  2. Conferences where one or more business experts use lectures to convey relevant knowledge.
  3. Seminars and workshops where one or more business experts convey relevant information and encourage dialogue on the information to ensure better understanding.
  4. Lectures where business experts work through a predefined curriculum. The lectures may be provided in a variety of settings, including:
    1. Single lectures of a few hours.
    2. An intensive lecture series covering multiple topics and presented intensively over up to a one to a few days.
    3. Multiple lectures on a single topic over a period of time within a college or university course.
    4. Multiple lectures covering a number of topics over a period of time within a college or university program.
    The lectures may or may not include testing. They may or may not have diplomas, degrees or other forms of accreditation. They may or may not have additional required reading.
  5. Radio and television series of an educational nature.
  6. Printed documents such as handouts, brochures, booklets, and books to be handed out by staff either free of charge or sold.

The arrival of digitization of both content and distribution mechanisms changes the situation in a number of ways.

First, non-digital content can be digitized to some degree and distributed through digital distribution mechansisms. For example:

  1. While the one-on-one consultations should remain private, the generic knowledge of the business advisers can be captured on video and distributed through digital mechanisms, utilized in expert-moderated web forums, captured in web seminars (webinars) and shared through Facebook and other social media.
  2. Conference, workshops and seminar presentation can be video-ed and distributed through digital mechanisms.
  3. Lectures can be video-ed and distributed either as stand-alone items, or incorporated into online courses that may include testing, required readings, identity verification, and accreditation.
  4. Radio and television shows and series are already digitized, but digitization allows for further distribution through websites, YouTube, downloadable audio-books and other ways.
  5. Printed documents have been in a digital format for years, but digital distribution allows for distribution through websites, downloadable e-books and email.

Second, digitization allows the bundling of digital content in different formats into one distribution system. Bundling allows the recipient to access expert interviews; conferences, workshops, and seminars; lectures; radio and TV series; and printable "how-to" documents on topics that are the subject of their interest. Education experts note that individuals learn in different ways, and bundling allows recipients to choose among videos, audios and documents as their preferred learning method for a particular topic.

Third, digitization also allows a comprehensive assembly of content, since digital systems have a lot of storage capacity. Comprehensive assembly allows for “externalities”, in which the recipient is seeking knowledge in one area but may incidentally find useful knowledge in other areas not originally envisaged. The effectiveness of the knowledge transfer is increased.

Who is the Target?

According to the Tanzania National Bureau of Statistics, the literacy rate in the Tanzanian population 5 years and over in 2012 was 71.23 percent. Message delivery in print formats will not work when the recipient is not literate. One solution is to deliver messages in audio and video formats, with graphic menus where feasible. Among Tanzania's literate population 5 years and over in 2012, only 5,239,729 would understand material in English, while 26,097,183 would understand Swahili. Clearly, Swahili printed material would reach an audience almost five times larger than English materials.

Literacy and Language
Tanzania Lindi Mtwara Iringa Mtwara
Total Population 44,428,923 864,652 1,270,854 941,238 2,772,509
Population 0 - 4 7,273,833 112,595 168,655 129,120 500,176
Population 5 years and over 37,155,090 752,057 1,102,199 812,118 2,272,333
Literate 26,466,078 468,257 714,602 625,879 1,612,253
Literacy Rate 71.23% 62.26% 64.83% 77.07% 70.95%
Kiswahili and English 4,934,827 40,594 66,050 120,556 288,418
English Only 304,902 2,801 4,475 6,245 15,156
Kiswahili Only 21,162,356 423,597 642,689 498,558 1,306,959
Other 63,993 1,265 1,388 520 1,720
Source: Tanzania National Bureau of Statistics, Census 2012

Literacy rates are age-related, with older groups less likely to be literate. They are also gender-related. Literacy rates among women appear to be similar to men around age 20. While both groups appear to lose literacy as they age, the drop is more pronounced among women. This could be related to the lack of incentive to retain the literacy gained in school. Audio and video delivery systems are more likely to be effective among older people generally and women in particular. The availability of useful printed documents provide an incentive to those who might otherwise lose their literacy, to retain it.

The education profile of Tanzanian men and women 15 years and above for 2014 is provided in the table below. Business development is not normally taught in primary and secondary schools. However, reading, writing and math skills are taught and are generally useful for business development. Delivery mechanisms need to take deficits into account. Strategies include initiatives to build up recipient capacity and to provide materials with simplified math.

Business development includes a generic component common to all businesses, and an industry component specific to specific line of business. Knowing the number of employees in specific industries: (1) assists in selecting the industries for knowledge components beyond the generic components and (2) assists in targeting promotion and delivery initiatives, since individuals who wish to start a business are often those already in the industry.

The following table provides some data on the number of businesses by region and industry for businesses that have at least one employee. Individuals already operating businesses would be interested in information on how to operate businesses rather than start businesses. Many are already using digital technologies such as smart phones and computers as part of their business for marketing, sales, accounting and other purposes. Experienced entrepreneurs would likely be more sophisticated in the type of knowledge they find useful, their use of digital technologies, and their literacy. Digital mechanisms generally and English materials would probably be more useful among this group than other segments of the population.

The following table provides national information on industries by number of employees for businesses with at least one employee. It facilitates the identification of small businesses within the larger business community.

Source: Statistical Business Registered Report Tanzania Mainland 2014 -2015, Tanzania National Bureau of Statistics

Beyond the 154,618 businesses with at least one employee, one expects a large number, perhaps in the millions, of businesses operated by self-employed individuals with no employees.

The 2012 Census includes data on assets in households. In 2012, most households in Tanzania had access to mobile phones, with the level of access differing across regions. In addition, radio access was also widespread. Television access was more limited.

Household Assets as a Percent of Households
Tanzania Lindi Mtwara Iringa Mwanza
Mobile Phone 63.9 43.3 41.6 59.2 69.7
Television 5.5 4.6 11.9 14.9
Radio 61.8 52.9 53.7 65.4 61.4
Source: Tanzania National Bureau of Statistics, Census 2012

The International Telecommunications Union assembles data on communications from member states. In 2017, mobile cell phone subscriptions totalled 69.7 percent of inhabitants. While some Tanzanians may have multiple subscriptions, it is likely that cell phone usage is high. In a digital world, mobile cell phones provide an opportunity for (1) entrepreneurs to establish support networks, (2) the provision of business advisory services through the telephone rather than face-to-face, (3) the operation of call centres to provide basic business advice, (4) the opportunity to provide business tips when callers leave a message, and (5) the delivery of audio messages off a menu. Mobile subscriptions are a pre-indicator for smart phones with internet connections.

Broadband subscriptions amounted to 8.7 percent of inhabitants. Only 4 percent had computers at home, but 14.4 percent had internet access at home (presumably through smart phones). These numbers provide guidance in the potential to reach Tanzanians through the internet and websites. They also suggest that most internet access would occur through smart phones rather than tablets and computers. Consequently, web delivery mechanism needs to be formatted to fit on small smartphone screens (e.g. responsive website designs, presentation of printable documents through more flexible HTML documents rather than PDFs, audio and video materials).

Source: International Telecommunications Union

Internet users in Tanzania are increasing rapidly. From 2006 to 2016, users have increased 5.5 times. In the period 2010 to 2016, users have increased 2.2 times, with additional users increasing by about 261,976 per year. By the time the two-year development phase of the project would be complete and the project would be fully operational, one can anticipate another 500,000 internet users in Tanzania.

Source: Internet Live Statistics

According to Internet World Statistics, there were 6,100,000 Facebook subscribers in Tanzania as of December 31, 2017.

Date Facebook YouTube Pinterest Twitter Instagram Other

Dec-17

85.78

5.17

3.95

2.86

1.32

0.92

Jan-18

78.37

7.55

7.05

4.59

1.22

1.22

Feb-18

67.93

11.61

10.53

6.29

1.97

1.67

Mar-18

59.90

17.46

12.66

5.98

2.26

1.74

Apr-18

64.97

15.35

11.55

4.28

2.26

1.59

May-18

60.73

16.75

12.38

4.37

3.82

1.95

Jun-18

63.83

16.33

11.13

4.90

2.56

1.25

Jul-18

66.84

11.71

12.08

5.26

2.91

1.20

Aug-18

63.91

12.42

13.34

5.86

3.43

1.04

Sep-18

59.12

12.98

15.58

6.76

4.51

1.05

Oct-18

63.86

11.21

13.49

7.42

2.91

1.11

Nov-18

58.00

12.13

14.20

6.65

7.96

1.06

Dec-18

61.03

8.96

14.99

6.88

6.93

1.21

Among social media platforms, Facebook dominated with 61.03 percent of total share as of December 2018, according to StatCounter GlobalStats.

There are computers in Tanzania that could house and provide access to a business knowledge base. For example, in 2016 there were 73,770 desktop and laptop computers in private and government secondary schools that likely have unused space on their hard drives.

The Proposed Project

The proposed Tanzania Business Knowledge Project would apply the digital revolution to business development in Tanzania.

The project would have two phases: Phase One - Development , in which the knowledge base is assembled and the distribution mechanisms are created, and Phase Two - Ongoing Operations , in which the focus is on distributing the assembled knowledge through the distribution mechanisms

Phase One - Development

Phase One - Development would have five components.

1. Assembling basic generic how-to business knowledge documents from government and quasi-government organizations in North America, and organizing the documents into an integrated, editable format.

This component would entail

  1. Seeking permission from the Business Development Bank of Canada to use information on its website for this and related projects.
  2. Pulling the English documents off the North American government and quasi-government websites into an editable format.
  3. Using the outline provided in Appendix One to organize all the documents under subject headings
  4. Carrying out a review by subject headings to determine how to organize the material within the subject heading into a set of concise documents that clearly and concisely articulates North American best practices.
  5. Implement the actual production of documents by subject heading.

The goal would be to capture all the North American best practices within a concise, logical framework. The amount of work involved on a particular document would range from (1) using a North America document directly, to (2) starting with a base document and carrying out edits to incorporate great ideas or eliminate irrelevant ones, to (3) carrying out rewrites to reconcile information from multiple sources into a logical, well-organized document, to (4) flagging items that would be irrelevant in Tanzania at the outset (e.g. regulatory items, North American statistics, North American government programs) and offering ideas about how they might be replaced in a Tanzanian context at the next stage. It is estimated that the end product would be about 150 documents (based on the number of documents in the North American websites), of no more than 4 pages each. The work could be done in Tanzania or elsewhere.

2. Adapting the North American knowledge for utilization in Tanzania.

This work would be done in Tanzania. The adaptation process would work with the approximately 150 documents representing North American best practices from the foregoing component. It would include:

  1. Addressing North American regulatory issues (which would be irrelevant in Tanzania) either by omitting them, or providing pointers to Tanzania regulatory authorities, or attempting to provide advice on how to manage Tanzania's regulations. Tanzania's laws and regulations as well as regulatory information from regulatory agencies are available online.
  2. Replacing North American statistical references with Tanzanian references,
  3. Replacing references to North American support programs with references to Tanzanian support mechanisms.
  4. Identifying North American best practices that would be impractical in Tanzania (e.g. sources of financing, different social environment) and replacing them with Tanzanian best practices in the subject area. Several mechanisms could be used to identify Tanzanian best practices, including interviews with Tanzanian business experts and successful entrepreneurs, and engaging interested universities and their students in research projects.

    The end result would be a Tanzanian adaptation of the English language North American basic, generic, how-to knowledge base to the Tanzanian context. The resulting package could include up to 150 documents, of length not exceeding 4 pages, in a format that is easy to edit. These 150 documents would also be assembled into a book for distribution as an e-book.

    3. Making the documents relevant to a Tanzanian audience by translating them into Swahili.

    Swahili translation is essential to make this knowledge base relevant in Tanzania, given the predominance of Swahili. The Swahili translation would involve an estimated 150 documents, of about 4 pages each and 400 words per page. Based on publicized rates, contractor translation rates are expected to approximately 10 cents per word. Given the volume of the work, a lower rate may be negotiable. The total cost would be about $24,000.

    4. Developing video and audio materials based on the content in the documents and other sources.

    Video and audio materials address literacy concerns generally and particularly as people age, especially women, since those that are not totally literate can access the content by watching or listening.

    Video content would come from:

    1. Short, in-house presentations of the 150 Swahili-English documents in the knowledge base.
    2. Business knowledge-capture interviews with (1) business experts in the Tanzanian government’s Small Industries Development Organization (SIDO), banks, micro-lenders, accounting firms, consulting firms, and business associations and (2) successful entrepreneurs willing to share their stories.
    3. The filming of events such as speeches, conferences, workshops, and training courses that may arise from time to time.

    Video products would include:

    1. Short videos on the 150 subjects in the knowledge base corresponding to the printed documents.
    2. Entrepreneur success story products, including one or more documentaries (1 to 2 hours) and a series (multiple episodes of about 30 minutes), based on interviews with successful entrepreneurs and intended to promote the potential of entrepreneurship and share the lessons learned in the process, for distribution through the website, television, radio (audio portions) and perhaps social media such as Facebook and YouTube.
    3. A series of subject-specific, best-practice videos developed by assembling interview components from business experts, successful entrepreneurs and events, for distribution on the website, television, radio (audio portions), perhaps social media such as Facebook and YouTube and perhaps within training courses delivered by others.
    4. Videos on events such as speeches, conferences, workshops and training courses that deal with best practices.

    The video component would include video editing to transform the raw content from the video capture initiatives into the audio and video products described above. The transformation would include:

    1. Splicing together relevant content from a variety of sources;
    2. Adding titles, subtitles, and credits;
    3. Adding dubbed audio and subtitled translations; and
    4. Generating the product into a suitable format for the target end-use (e.g. web, television, radio, social media).

    Audio products to correspond to the video products would be developed by separating the audio track from the video. In audio and video products, Tanzanian humour, music, good presentation and consistent formatting would increase effectiveness.

    5. Distributing the documents, videos and audios primarily through a website but also through other digital distribution mechanisms .

    Internet distribution of the materials through a website is a key component to the project. The website:

    1. Needs a name that is memorable, self-describing, and having an instant appeal to Tanzanians.
    2. Needs to be bilingual (Swahili and English).
    3. Should be designed to display (a) from the knowledge base, an estimated 150 English and 150 Swahili documents in HTML format (for viewing on small screens) plus related PDFs (for printing purposes) plus related videos and audios, and (b) other materials such as ebooks, audio-books, success stories, documentaries, and series.
    4. Should have simple accessing systems to help users find items of interest.
    5. Should have at the outset format rules for the materials and systematic file-naming conventions to facilitate the management of a large number of files.
    6. Should be designed in a responsive format so that it can be viewed easily whether the visitor is using a computer, tablet or smart phone. Off-the-shelf designs that could be modified should be explored.
    7. Should have a security certificate, to give users confidence that the site is safe.
    8. Should be fully documented with site rules and conventions, and fully explained cascading style sheets, so that the work of programmers involved in keeping, updating and extending the site over a long period of time can be simplified.
    9. Should Include user feed-back comments to provide ongoing direction, improvements and corrections.
    10. Should include site statistics to allow content managers to know what components are highly used and what components are not, so they can make adjustments as needed.

    Once established and put in operation, the websitewould need start-up promotions such as grand opening events, press releases, news interviews, email announcements, mailout announcements, special advertising, posters, and presentations at events.

    In addition to internet distribution of the content through the website, other internet distribution mechanisms need to be developed, including social media, particularly Facebook, YouTube and Pinterest.

    In addition to internet distribution, there are other digital distribution mechanisms. The materials on the website would be designed for distribution through memory sticks or CDs to be viewed through a browser and distributed on request to parties with computer networks or standalone computers. Audio books and e-books would allow interested parties to store relevant information on smart phones. Television and radio also provide opportunities to distribute the information, whether through one or more television and radio series, documentaries, or short "business tips of the day".

    Phase Two – Ongoing Operations

    Once the website and other digital distribution mechanisms are fully operational, the project would enter Phase Two - Ongoing Operations . Tasks would include:

    1. Promoting the existence of the site, to encourage usage. A catchy theme song would help.
    2. Maintaining and updating the knowledge base, including corrections, responses to advice and suggestions, the identification of new best practices, the development of new videos as opportunities arise (e.g. new entrepreneur success stories, new business experts, association meetings, training courses).
    3. Updating the HTML language in the website to track the evolution of the language.
    4. Maintaining the technical aspects of the website (hosting services, security, name registration, search engine optimization)
    5. Adding additional video material as opportunities arise
    6. Continuing to manage existing delivery mechanisms, include the website, standalone databases, social media, etc.
    7. Reviewing performance, particularly the extent of access and the impact of access, and exploring new mechanisms.
    8. Supporting training work of others. Work with training institutions to encourage their incorporation of business “how-to” information into their new and existing training courses, and fill any gaps that remain.
    9. Supplementing the generic, how-to knowledge base with industry-specific and area-specific knowledge, primarily by interviewing experts and successful entrepreneurs and posting the videos.
    10. Managing copyrights.

    Effectiveness

    The project should be effective because:

    1. It has the potential to reach and benefit a large and growing Tanzanian audience.

    Statistics about internet use in Tanzania may not be totally consistent, but collectively point to significant and growing use.

    According to the International Telecommunications Union, in 2017, there were 8.9 broadband subscriptions per 100 inhabitants, of which 8.7 subscriptions were mobile and 0.2 subscriptions were hardwired. Four percent of households had a computer, but 14.4 percent had internet access at home and 16 percent of individuals were using the internet.

    According to Internet Live Statistics, in 2016 there were 2,895,662 internet users in Tanzania, representing 5.3 percent of the population. In the period 2010 to 2016, users have increased 2.2 times, with additional users increasing by about 261,976 per year. By the time the proposed project is online, there are likely to be an additional half million users in Tanzania.

    Even if a small percentage of total users are interested in starting a business, the potential reach of the project is large, particularly when compared with the reach of current mechanisms such as advisory services and training courses.

    Regarding existing businesses, in 2014-2015, there were 154,618 businesses employing at least 1 person. In addition, there are a large number of businesses operated by self-employed individuals but without employees. These existing businesses would likely welcome and benefit from how-to best-practices for operating a business. For example, the 154,618 businesses with employees would be interested in best employment practices, while the 54,017 manufacturing businesses would be interested in best-practices on sales, marketing and exporting.

    Although the internet would be the primary delivery mechanism for the knowledge base, the content would be distributed through other digital mechanisms.

    The system would be designed so that it can be easily added to networks and computers through memory sticks, CDs and DVDs. Parties potentially interested in putting the knowledge base on their computers include government agencies, private consultants, banks, business organizations, universities and university colleges, training institutions, and secondary schools.

    Cell phone subscriptions amounted to 69.7 percent of Tanzania's population. There may be innovative ways to set up mobile access systems to audio files. Call centres, where operators connect callers to relevant audio files, are one possibility. Well-trained call centre operators could use the knowledge base to verbally pass on the content. Another option is call-menu systems to link callers with relevant audio files.

    2. The development costs are not large, and the ongoing costs are low.

    The development costs are not large, because a considerable component of the knowledge base would be available from North American governments at no charge and there would be a relatively small cost to making this knowledge base available to Tanzania.

    Once in place, the knowledge base is relatively stable and unchanging over time, since business best practices are not readily subject to change. This gives the completed project a long lifespan at little additional cost.

    3. The project should be foundational for business development in Tanzania.

    a. It supports the development of more effective business advisory services provided by the Government of Tanzania, non-government organizations, and private business advisers.

    When a prospective entrepreneur or an existing business approaches a business adviser, the knowledge base would enable the adviser to provide information outside his/her area of expertise. For example, an engineer could assist with sales and marketing issues. The knowledge base provides the adviser with the opportunity to supplement verbal advice with a printed document. The knowledge base would allow non-professional staff in the office to provide assistance in the areas covered by the knowledge base, and thereby allow the expert advisers to focus on those queries that go beyond the knowledge base.

    b. It provides a base for the development of business training programs from universities and university colleges in Tanzania (public and private) and for the incorporation of business knowledge content into non-business training courses.

    According to Wikipedia, there are 26 universities and 15 university colleges in Tanzania. For those institutions wishing to start or enhance their existing programmes targeted at aspiring and existing entrepreneurs, the knowledge base would provide a structure and tool for their course development, as well as an ongoing resource for course students and graduates.

    Appendix Two lists training programmes included in the website of SIDO. While there was a business element within many of these courses, most programmes typically focused on technical subjects (e.g. food processing, sewing related) rather than generic business practices. The knowledge base would provide business materials for these training courses. It would also provide ongoing support for the entrepreneurs once they have finished the course.

    c. The project should be foundational since the knowledge base and the Tanzanian experience would provide a model for business development initiatives in other jurisdictions.

    The English version of the knowledge base, both adapted for Tanzania and the pre-adaptation version, would be available for other jurisdictions by the end of the project. In addition, the design and perhaps coding of the website could also be available. Knowledge with the project, including its strong points and weaknesses, would also remain and could be applied in other jurisdictions.

    Note that the knowledge base would be of particular interest to those who speak Swahili, including residents of Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo and Mozambique. According to Wikipedia, the number of native and second language speakers is in the 50 to 100 million range.

    Design, Organization and Costing

    The project would proceed in two phases: Phase One - Development and Phase Two - Ongoing Operations .

    Phase One - Development

    The Phase would likely be organized along the following lines.

    1. Knowledge Assembly

    The element could start immediately, and should be completed before other elements begin. Once completed, there would be a better understanding of subsequent adaptation and translation requirements. Duties would include: (1) seeking permission from the Business Development Bank of Canada for use of its materials; (2) downloading the documents from the identified websites in an editable format; (3) reconciling the various documents into an amalgamated format which captures all the best practices, removes duplication, and flags content likely to be irrelevant in Tanzania; and (4) delivering to Tanzania an amalgamated, concise package of up to 150 documents in English. The work would involve about 75 days, based on 2 documents per day.

    2. The Tanzania Content/Project Manager

    One individual would have dual responsibilities for managing the content in the site, in addition to managing the project overall. Initially, the work would focus on content, but shift toward project management once the content is solidified.

    As Content Manager, the duties of the individual would include:

    1. Reviewing the North American documents;
    2. Developing replacement documents where necessary (e.g. regulations, statistics, government programs and services);
    3. Identifying best-practice gaps that need to be filled;
    4. Identifying Tanzanian business experts and successful entrepreneurs to be interviewed, and developing an interview questionnaire that would among other things address the best-practice gaps;
    5. Exploring whether universities and colleges would assist in filling Tanzanian best-practice gaps;
    6. Representing the content of the best-practice documents in the production of related videos;
    7. Overseeing the translation of the documents into Swahili;
    8. Identifying additional content sources such as meetings, conferences, and workshops and negotiating video access;
    9. verseeing the video editing process to maximize the benefits from the video source materials; and
    10. Exploring the interest of TV and radio stations in the potential content, and if so, their design requirements.

    As Project Manager, the duties would include:

    1. Overseeing the video capture and editing component, including (a) exploring whether other parties would be interested in assisting, and (b) hiring and directing the Tanzania Video Officer, and
    2. Overseeing the digital distribution component, including hiring and directing the Tanzania Digital Distribution Officer;
    3. Ptomoting the website through (a) an effective name, (b) start-up promotions, (c) ongoing promotions, and (d) using products distributed outside the website (e.g. Facebook pages) to promote the website;
    4. Exploring Phase Two - Ongoing Operations management options such as sponsors, partners, advertising and commercialization to ensure the project would be sustainable, and developing a plan for Phase Two - Ongoing Operations .

      The work of the Tanzania Content/Project Manager would cover two calendar years. Resource requirements would include 2 person-years salary, office space, office support, computer and internet access, travel, promotions, and the cost of translation services estimated at $24,000.

      3. The Tanzania Video Officer

      The duties of the Tanzania Video Officer would include:

      1. Capturing video content from: (a) presentations by the Tanzania Content Manager; (b) interviews with Tanzanian experts; (c) interviews with successful Tanzanian entrepreneurs; and (d) events such as workshops, conferences and training courses;
      2. Editing the raw video content into (a) short videos to correspond to the documents in the knowledge base; (b) success story products such as documentaries and video series; (c) best-practice products such as documentaries and video series; and (d) event-related products.

      Editing would include:

      1. Integrating raw content from various sources into coherent stories;
      2. Adding titles, subtitles, credits, and other tools to enhance the presentation;
      3. Adding language subtitles where warranted;
      4. Using consistent presentation formats through all the products; and
      5. Incorporating humour wherever possible.

      The work of the Tanzania Video Officer is expected to take one calendar year, beginning toward the end of the first year of the project as the Tanzania Content Officer is nearing completion of process of adapting North American materials to the Tanzanian context and ending about three months before the completion of the project, so that the content can be integrated in the digital distribution mechanisms. Resource requirements include one person-year of salary, office space, office support, significant travel, internet access, computer with sufficient power for video editing, camera with video capture, video editing software.

      4. The Tanzania Digital Distribution Officer

      The duties of the Tanzania Digital Distribution Officer would include:

      1. Developing the website, including:
        1. Designing the format (e.g. responsive design, appearance);
        2. Incorporating key features (e.g. messages, statistics, bilingual, printing);
        3. Organizing the content (e.g. file naming conventions);
        4. Designing content accessing systems (e.g. key word search, drill down menus and submenus, sitemap);
        5. Populating the system with available content;
        6. User testing;
        7. Documenting design and coding decisions for future reference; and
        8. Dealing with operational issues (e.g. name registration, security certificate, hosting services, search engine optimization;
      2. Developing non-web mechanisms to distribute the knowledge base, including CDs and memory sticks with instructions for installation on networks and standalone computers;
      3. Exploring and perhaps implementing telephone mechanisms for distribution the information; and
      4. Developing and implementing a plan to distribute the information through social media including Facebook, YouTube and other mechanisms.

      The work of the Tanzania Digital Distribution Officer is expected to take a half year, beginning six months before completion of Phase One - Development . Resource requirements include one-half person-year salary, office space, office support, internet access, computer, memory sticks, website design software, web service funding (name registration, hosting, security certificate).

      5. Phase One - Development - Summary

      The Phase would cover two calendar years and involve 3.5 Tanzanian person-years and related costs such as salaries, office space, office support, computers, internet access, computer software, travel, camera, cash expenditures for translation ($24,000), and promotion. For the investment, the resulting product would bring the digital revolution to business development in Tanzania by fully utilizing the digitization of content and digital distribution systems. The table below summarizes the project.

      Phase Two - Ongoing Operations

      Once the knowledge base and its distribution mechanisms have been established , there is the requirement for ongoing management. Phase Two would include:

      1. Maintaining and updating the knowledge base;
      2. Continuing to manage existing delivery mechanisms, including the website, social media pages and external locations of the knowledge base;
      3. Review performance, particularly the extent of access and the impact of access, and explore new mechanisms;
      4. Supporting training work of others by work with training institutions to encourage their incorporation of business “how-to” information into their new and existing training courses, and filling any gaps that remain.
      5. Supplementing the generic, how-to knowledge base with readily accessible industry-specific and area-specific knowledge, primarily by interviewing industry and area experts and posting the videos. These experts include business advisers, government experts, academics, and successful entrepreneurs.
      6. Managing copyright.

      Phase Two costs depend on the extent to which the knowledge base and its delivery systems are enhanced and used in additional delivery system. Phase Two would have a minimum annual requirement of one person-year of salary and related costs for office space, office support, computers, internet, travel, website maintenance, contracted services (translation, website updates, promotion and the like).