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“We See a Huge Demand from New Generation Entrepreneurs to Move Towards Cloud ERP Solutions”

By: DT News Network
January, 23, 2019

Indian ICT market is one of the leading industries in the world. There are several factors which has been supporting the growth of this industry. One of the prime areas in which innovations are taking place is ERP domain as there are a lot of business requirements these days that need to be as per latest technology trends. Actouch Technology is one of the ERP solution provider that caters to need of any organisation with its highly optimized ERP solutions. In a recent conversation with Nityananda Rao, CEO, Actouch Technology, DT got to know more about their business operations and industry approach. Below are the insights: 

DT: How has been the year 2018 for you in context of business growth? 

Mr. Nityananda: Last calendar year was good for us. Because previous to that year, we took a bold decision to focus to acquire more customers from manufacturing segments as they need more user licenses and we found a GAP in the market. To gain the confidence and market share we invested heavily on the problems that were faced by manufacturing segments and tried to address them. There are few problems that are known to all, but no one is spending efforts or money to solve it. We focused on this segment to win few customers and that helped us to gain more customers. We focussed on end users usability and how to simplify the data entry process by studying end users behaviours. 

Our focused approach helped us to gain manufacturing customers in OEM Suppliers, large Machine manufacturers, Switch Gears and PVC Pipe manufacturers, Injection Moulding Companies etc. Mainly we focused on Discrete manufacturing segment and we achieved a lot with few key logo wins here.  

Few areas we focussed are as below that gave tremendous value to our customers. 

  1. Product costing (Activity Based Costing- ABC)
  2. Simplified process of materials movement across Production, Stores and Inventory sections.
  3. Bill of Materials with By-products. How to handle them and ensure costing is affected?
  4. Handling of Work order, Routing, Subcontracting operations from ONE SCREEN with management status.
  5. Planning module that helps to manage day today production plan and issuance of materials.

Personally, we saw a good growth in 2018. 

DT: How do you see the adoption of ERP softwares among Indian Enterprises in recent times? What are the prime challenges for you in operating your business in this competitive market? 

Mr. Nityananda: For the last 5 years, we have seen that adaptation to Cloud ERP in India is a slow process. It involves educating the Business owners on the advantages of cloud solutions, its security and how it would make their life of Business owners and department heads easy. Their main concerns are how the data is secured on Cloud and it is not made available to competitors and other Government agencies etc. It was strange to note that many SMEs don’t even understand what Cloud ERP Software is?  

We started our journey by educating the business owners, built trust by providing good support, solving their issues, made sure that the application is available 24x7 and helped them with their internal process improvement etc. 

In India, the second challenge for the last 5 years is in telecom infrastructure and its surrounding services like Internet availability and affordable data plans. Now these are resolved due to presence of Jio Internet services. However, post Goods and Services Tax implementation in India, we see a huge amount of demand from new generation entrepreneurs to move towards Cloud ERP solutions, wanting to reduce their costs and increase profitability. The earlier advantages that is provided by many standalone Accounting software has been lost and business owners took advantage of this, as they want to see their data on Mobile now. More than that, I think Indian business owners started realising that their core strength is to run and grow the business and not to manage Software and Hardware.  

DT: What are the latest trends in ERP domain in India? 

Mr. Nityananda: Interesting question. There are many advancements been happening in the ERP Industry with a major focus on the following two areas.

 

  1. Transaction level changes
  2. New technology level Changes 

On the transaction level, the SME started changing their focus and moved into Cloud based Solutions. They started seeing the saving in Money and Resources and move out of old technology as they started questioning ROI of an ERP implementation. Many realised that, its good to depend on good vendor rather than manage everything in-house team. 

On technology level, SMEs started adapting to new technologies to simplify their process and increase productivity. It became a Social recognition for SMEs to move into the new technologies like Cloud or use Mobile Apps for their Sales Force or Dealers etc. 

  1. Cloud technologies and deployment models
  2. IOT – Internet of things connected to Machines and getting the data directly
  3. RFID and other tools to increase productivities
  4. People started using Social media as an enablers to get more customers. They started using CRMs, Mobile Apps for Sales Forces, Mobile Apps for Dealers to place their order online etc. 

In some of the above cases, the old Businesses houses are forced to change themselves and move into Cloud Technologies, as many surrounding solutions are available only on Cloud and their Interfaces like Sales force Mobile Apps, or Dealer Portal and getting their orders online and update their ERP etc.  

So these are some of the changes the industry has seen in the recent past. 

DT: Please brief about your top ERP offerings. What are your key working areas? 

Mr. Nityananda: As you might be aware, ERP is a RED OCEAN and there are 1000’s of vendors who sell ERPs of all varieties. We have built product features like Sales, Quotes, Billing, Inventory, Payments and Receipts, Manufacturing module with Planning, Work Order, Bill of materials, Subcontracting, Finance, Interface to marketplaces like Amazon, eBay etc and all the financial MIS reports. Most of these are developed with Customers as subject matter experts as we believed in their feedback and simplify the process.  

How are we different? We focused on the following and built customer TRUST on us. 

  1. Solution in Progress (SIP) – These features list are same like many of the existing ERPs like handling of Invoicing, Billing, Payments, Receipts and Financials etc. However, we focussed on the end users usability and how to simplify the process by studying end users behaviours.
  2. Identified problems – These are the problems that are known in the existing products, but no one spending efforts or money to change it. We focused on this segment to win few customers and that helped us to gain more customers.
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