44 percent of manufacturers in Kenya have expressed a desire to invest and migrate to Enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems over the next five years.
This is according to the inaugural Manufacturing Survey released last week by resource planning software provider SYSPRO and the Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Kenya (ICPAK).
ERP refers to a type of software that organizations use to manage day-to-day business activities such as accounting, procurement, project management, risk management and compliance, and supply chain operations.
It facilitates organizations’ operations across every department improving how they handle business resources whether in raw materials for manufacturing or staffing hours for human resources.
According to the survey, warehouse Automation trailed just behind at 39 percent, followed by Business Intelligence at 38 percent as the technology and digital transformation initiatives that these manufactures plan to invest in.
‘’As an effective digital managerial tool, ERP affords its users the ability to not only confidently pivot in times of crisis and streamline the efficiency of their operations’’ the report says.
This is particularly invaluable to Kenya given the importance of raw goods and materials to a primarily Food & Beverage producing region struggling with global supply chain issues.
According to the report, while ERP is not able to magically resolve tumultuous trading, it does consolidate important data in real-time, expediting faster decision-making.
Furthermore, it is an ideal pre-emptive counter to growing People bottlenecks, as it is able to optimize the roles and responsibilities in business, resulting in more efficient use of human resources and removal of lingering redundancies.
The survey was conducted across a range of Manufacturing and Distribution companies in Kenya. It drew over 100 responses from financial leaders predominantly from larger enterprises operating in Kenya.
Speaking during the launch of the survey findings, Doug Hunter, Head of Customer and Ecosystem Enablement at SYSPRO Africa noted that the COVID-19 pandemic has prompted the need for diversification and innovation in changing global market policies to help businesses adapt to the ‘new normal’ of the digitized world.
“We saw businesses eager to diversify largely favor uptake of enterprise technologies and expectedly, the re-engineering of supply chains to improve business-to-business (B2B) trading come in a close second,” ICPAK CEO Edwin Makori said.
The survey which assessed sentiments on how manufacturing businesses are faring after an unprecedented also revealed that 41 percent of Kenya’s Manufacturing and Distribution financial leaders have yet to record their digital ROI. 7 percent are not sure if any were received while 31 percent still planning on investigating.