Intelligent Issue 05 | Page 42



Dumisani Moyo , Head of Mid- Market : Southern Africa at SAP to note that Digital Transformation is about a fundamental shift that results in value creation . It is about leveraging technology in all aspects of the business ’ operations to fundamentally change the way it operates and delivers value to its customers . It is about rethinking and re-imagining business processes , business cultures and customer experiences to respond to changing business and market conditions .
There are two main aspects of Digital Transformation : it can be externally focused and aimed at improving customer interactions and outcomes , or it can be internally focused on making work easier , more engaging and more efficient for employees .
SMEs need to act quickly to futureproof their businesses and make them more resilient
In the context of a tough post-pandemic business environment and in a sector where liquidity and cash flow are perennial
Technology can empower SMEs to make credible decisions and better adapt to a dynamic and unpredictable business environment . In times of heightened uncertainty , such as what we are currently experiencing , one standout technology for SMEs is Enterprise Resource Planning , commonly referred to as ERP .
Technology enabling resilience to disruption
The common misconception that technology is only accessible to large companies with big budgets is misplaced . SMEs can also leverage technology to drive better efficiencies , innovation and growth . In fact , compared to larger companies , SMEs are well placed to take advantage of technology . Because of their size , SMEs are more agile and are able to make decisions faster and respond to changing market conditions quicker .
In the context of SMEs , Digital Transformation is often misunderstood , and its benefits shrouded in mystery , despite the endless applications of technology that can deliver direct business value . In particular , the cloud removes many of the barriers to Digital Transformation by enabling SMEs to pay for services as they consume them and to easily integrate new services as and when they need them . This reduces the total cost of ownership and removes the need for costly upfront investments .
Connecting the dots challenges , the ability to quickly adapt to this new normal can be the difference between survival and absolute disaster .
Beyond navigating financial and operational pressures , SMEs also face substantive challenges such as Business Continuity and weak demand for their products and services .
The COVID-19 crisis is forcing SMEs to fundamentally rethink their business models , in particular how they manage remote work and interact with suppliers and customers while managing widespread uncertainty .
The purpose of implementing an ERP solution is to provide an end-to-end information management system that connects the right information , to the right people , at the right time . It helps companies manage the countless processes that make the business function effectively , such as finance , human resources , supply chain , procurement and customer relationship management to name a few .
An ERP solution enables the smooth flow of information across the business and gives decision-makers a real-time view of the overall health of the business , with potential risks and weak spots more easily identified . Unfortunately , some still see ERP solutions as costly , difficult to implement and with high entry barriers for SMEs . Sadly , this ignores the enormous progress made by technology providers to
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