After launching on April 4 of 2017, Sage One Payroll is now live in Kenya even as it expands to other African countries outside South Africa, like Nigeria. Today marked the media and stakeholder launch of the product which serves Accounting, social security and Payroll, in one, in the country. According to the sage of the day, Regional Director for Sage East Africa, Nikki Summers, Sage One Payroll presently has its sights on small businesses but not manufacturing units in Kenya but may one day become a behemoth for all types of businesses. More information on using local services like MPESA with Sage One Payroll & Accounting can all be found on the company’s site. Next is a view from the fourth estate, a journalist who attended the conference and what he gathered from there!
Redundant Payment Plan
With its Payrun which is quite flexible, customers, going by the wise word of Business Development Manager (BDM) East Africa, Claire Kaguara, are free to “set up unlimited amount of flexible pay runs.”
A pay run, such as the one Sage One is offering in Kenya and later Nigeria, is a system where an employer utilizes a systematic timing method of featuring new employee payment, for instance in the Kenyan context, his or her NSSF or social security benefits, without having to go for a one-off, cumbersome payment log. One can add as many pay dates as possible with no restrictions in the Sage One offer.
With this redundant system of accounting for employee benefits including tax deductions, there are other worthy advantages that the payroll manager announced including: keying in legislation and tax changes details, automatic updates to the payroll software in use, submissions & declarations, as well as, perhaps a new phenomenon namely, the bureau. According to the Business Development Manager, “you can process anywhere, anytime. We have a (virtual) Accountant in something called the bureau. A bureau,” she expanded, ” is someone like you, a reseller. It is like an outsource partner to activate the system or do the work for you.”
According to the two muses addressing the conference, Sage One Payroll and Accounting system has unrivaled integration. For instance, it is possible to view all companies in a portfolio and their businesses, employees and other details in one dashboard. The brochure from the company expounds on this by asserting what the Sage website already shows colorfully that the company’s integration to businesses owes to a modern user interface, making the prices accessible on any browser with no app to install.
Back to the muses:
Regional Director, Nikki Summers on ease of integration: “You can account for multiple companies operating under you,” in answer to a question fielded by a young entrepreneur.
Business Development Manager, Claire Kaniaru on dual integration: ” Though Sage One Payroll and Sage One Accounting work together, this does not negate using one. Either can be used independently of the other.” To make it even easier, set up is one-off, meaning implementing both schemes at once but treating them independently.
On NSSF, NHIF and Social Security
On the dashboard, just inside the elegant Norfolk Ballroom, next to the sumptuous breakfast pods interspaced elaborately in white overflowing covers, are three huge screens acting as dashboards for entering social security and other employee enrollment info on Sage One. Towards the end of the keynote address by the two key senior presenters, the Marketing Manager for Sage in East Africa, Zellipah Kaniaru stepped up and invited users to a free trial of the system under demonstration and a ruffle would see one lucky entrant win a prize.
Indeed, so integral and sophisticated is the system that one can enter all National Social Security Fund (NSSF)- and NHIF-related details of company employees at once and update them, at will, through such features as Pay Run, Personal Information, Tax Deductions, Total Taxable salary, and so forth. Indeed, it is easy to use this system for quick submissions. This means generating one’s NSSF, NHIF and PAYE reports in electronic format for quick and easy submissions to relevant agents, such as, company bosses or pension authorities.
A Modern Interface
The user interface for Sage One Kenya is such that even those who are not Internet-savvy can still reap information because of the automatic nature of cloud coverage. As Claire Kaniaru commented, “you are able to communicate with Assistant seamlessly. You may not be hands-on but you have full visibility. It is pay as you go with no set up fee.”
She added that the set up comes with a 60-day trial on Payroll, and/or a 3-day trial on Accounting. This is all the more reason for even those still green in the ways of the Internet of Things, CRM and business accounting systems to gauge how it works before committing fully.
The modern user interface, according to the manager, has the following accessible features with none of the run-of-the-mill disadvantages in today’s many software offers:
“It is a cloud-based solution. You don’t need a router. All you get is a prompt that you have now the latest version. It is 256-bit encrypted and ISO-9001 certified.”
She finished on this section by adding that the system is extremely feature-rich harboring project management niches and tax-compliant inventory.
Technical Details(Statistics, Geographical Coverage, e.t.c)
Firstly, a picture of the payment plan by Sage:
*Sage One Accounting costs -Ksh1435 monthly – 15498 per annum (reflecting a 10% discount).
*1 GB Storage Addition- Ksh 70 per month.
* A Free 30-day trial available on Sageone.co.ke.
* Though the larger Sage offering in South Africa has advanced Customer Relationship Management (CRM ) software, “the Sage One product in Kenya currently has no CRM. Currently there is a third-party CRM. But it’s part of our journey to have our own.” Said the presenters during the conference.
At the start of the presentation, the Regional Director for EA region, Nikki Summers gave a brief but crisp-perfect explanatory on the various developments that have visited upon the larger Sage South Africa as well as the Sage One newborn, now in Kenya. The details included:
” Currently,” she began, ” we have 300 businesses using Sage One in East Africa. This is why this is such a big occasion.”
Launched on April 4, 2017 in Nairobi, Sage One, as of the day of the launch meet at the Norfolk has had “355 employees paid via Payroll,” Summers said.
“We now have 3 million customers worldwide,” expanding on the entire company and its branches, ” In such areas as North America, Africa and Europe.”
She finished her bit on an encouraging word to the effect that owing to the testament of willingness to pay in the market showcased by local employers, “we really want to be there with you through your journey through business.”
With 38,000 users logging in to Sage every month, according to Summers, and with ” businesses spending 52 hours a week on administration, that’s why we are talking about cloud mobility.”
Summers summed up the occasion in the initial address with these words, a fitting cap to the above report: “Over 80% of businesses fail in the second year of running…with Sage One Payroll in East Africa we can change all that.”
Read more on this story by visiting an interview we conducted with Nikki Summers in the run-up to the Sage One launch on Bizrika Interviews section!