By the mid-2000s, the world was readjusting to a new social media wave and by the turn of the decade cloud was all abuzz. And now, cloud solutions, where companies and individuals operate, store and administer their IT and mortar-and-brick needs remotely, has become an operations necessity. Enter Sage, the market as well as tech leader in payroll and HR solutions with integrated accounting, all on the cloud. Bizrika conducted an interview with Sage’s Nikki Summers on the company’s premise of an admin-free cloud coverage in Kenya and Nigeria.
According to your latest press release, your new cloud (comprising of stable payroll, HR and integrated payment systems) rollout will eliminate the need of admin. In relative terms, by which degree will this reduce time spent on administrators’ tasks?
This will vary from company to company, depending on the complexity of their accounts and the size of their payroll however, automation will save many hours for the people who do the books. In many companies, the accountant and payroll administrator spend hours or even days of their time manually capturing transactions in a spreadsheet or preparing pay slips and invoices.
With our solution, business builders can generate financial reports, quotes, payslips and invoices with a touch of a button, do automatic bank reconciliations, and easily file income tax submissions for your payroll. Even for a small business, the time savings can amount to a working day or more each month.
You are launching Sage One Payroll in Kenya and Nigeria, March through June. How will this improve accounting, as a whole, in both countries?
We hope to make it easier for even the smallest businesses to keep accurate records, file tax returns, create professional payslips and generate leave reports. Our solution makes it simple to calculate salaries and payments, including absence, attachments, bonuses, expenses, holiday pay, hourly payments, overtime, tax, pensions, salaries, student loans, etc.
This will not only save companies time, but help them to improve tax compliance, reduce errors and fraud, and gain better visibility into the business and its payroll. With Sage One Payroll, it is easier for businesses to comply local statutory requirements – rather than spending hours generating reports, Business builders can focus their energy on doing what they do best – running their businesses.
What is Sage Live, your business solution for scale-up businesses for managing multiple locations and currencies, which is starting in South Africa?
Built on the Salesforce Lightning user interface, Sage Live is a powerful, customisable, and cost-effective cloud accounting solution for scale up businesses. Customers can manage multiple locations and currencies in the palm of their hand, while taking advantage of the add-on solutions available on the Sage market place and the Salesforce App exchange.
Sage Live will be available to business builders in South Africa later this year.
Following up on above, will Sage Live be available in other countries in the continent?
We have not yet made any decisions about this.
Is Sage Pay available to all users of Sage payroll solutions or it is enabled in select countries?
Sage Pay is a leading payments provider to Small & Medium Businesses in South Africa. A Sage Pay account integrates seamlessly with Sage Accounting and Payroll software. We have collaborated with various payment gateways in other parts of Africa to bring the benefits of Sage One to customers in other parts of the continent, along with payments solutions that meet their needs.
In Kenya, for example, we work with PayGate, which enables small businesses to make and process payments via Mpesa (over 45% of the country’s GDP is transacted via Mpesa) and other payment methods such as debit or credit cards.
Multinationals take time to spread abroad. What business approach has allowed Sage to grow so fast outside South Africa?
We have built a really strong channel of business partners, who know the markets where they operate and understand the business conditions. We have also invested in a local presence in key territories so that we can stay close to our customers and partners.
We understand that you also have solutions for the Middle East?
Sage in the Middle East provides:
Yes, Sage in the Middle East offers CRM solutions, HR & Payroll Solutions, Business management solutions, Accounting solutions and Business intelligence solutions.
Any other upcoming/interesting developments in East and West Africa?
We will soon launch Sage One Invoicing in sub-Saharan Africa. It gives start-ups the ability to produce professional quotes and invoices from a mobile device or PC, at any time or place they have access to the internet. The details of this will soon be communicated.
Thank you so much for talking to Bizrika.