Covid-19 has given all businesses cause to reflect on their use of resources, processes, and efficiency. Lockdown restrictions, closed borders and weak trading environments have forced adaptation to new production processes, sales channels, and physical space requirements. Now it is time for business management platforms to follow suit.
During the lockdown, Stuart Scanlon, MD of epic ERP, met with his fellow directors and business advisors to rethink the enterprise resource planning (ERP) requirements African businesses would have since the pandemic has shifted business globally.
“With a key focus on helping businesses grow and overcome real-world problems, we are massively optimistic about the prospects for South Africa and the rest of the continent,” says Scanlon.
Dr. Daneel van Eck, Director of Strategy for Epic ERP, said, “Delivering cloud solutions in Africa has unique requirements. Although our existing solutions are exceptionally strong in several verticals, we realised in order to service a wider customer base in an effective way we needed to take on additional, complementary ERP solutions.
“As a result, we have now teamed up with Microsoft Dynamics and Oracle NetSuite to provide their ERP products alongside our Epicor offering. Despite the obvious credentials of all three providers, it’s not about being vendor-driven – our rationale is that we need the flexibility to meet every possible customer requirement to unlock maximum value in their business. Ultimately, our focus is on our customers and ways to help them grow. We feel we can do that better by being solution-agnostic. Our strategy is #CustomerFirst,” van Eck explains.
Scanlon says epic ERP has moved closer to the company’s original strategy, which was built around a multi-vendor approach.
“We short-listed five potential vendors and called in external consultants to help us assess their strengths across various metrics so that we could cover the scope of customer needs we defined.
Ultimately, the three vendors we have in place complement each other as the best fit for our vision for helping African mid-tier organisations grow and succeed in their sectors. ERP is in our DNA, so we needed to present the strongest line-up we could, and we believe we now have that in place,” says Scanlon.
“As a solutions provider, we have to preserve our focus and agility in putting customers first and providing vendor-neutral, honest advice. In this model, we can leverage the best-fit ERP system based on multiple factors.
Going forward I am also confident that we will have more news of exciting acquisitions and vendor relationships to share because the operating environment will be increasingly digital and that will play to our strengths in helping our customers stay competitive globally,” van Eck concludes.