How firms seek to innovate their way out of Covid storms

How firms seek to innovate their way out of Covid storms

Kenyan firms are banking on new technologies to recover from the shockwaves of the Covid-19 pandemic with many businesses seeing 2023 as the year when their fortunes will turn around.

This is according to new a new research which reveals that only seven percent of Kenyan businesses have already recovered from the shockwaves of the Covid-19 pandemic as of November 2021.

The inaugural Manufacturing CFO 4.0 2021 Survey conducted by global enterprise resource planning (ERP) software provider Syspro and the Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Kenya (ICPAK) shows that 36 percent of the more than 100 companies’ surveyed see 2023 to be the year when their businesses will stabilise.

The survey, conducted among Chief Financial Officers (CFOs) in Kenya’s manufacturing sector between September 1 and November 15 indicates that financial service providers eager to diversify largely favoured enterprise technologies, with 70 percent committing to taking on Business Intelligence, ERPs, enterprise risk management and related systems.

“Expectedly, the re-engineering of supply chains to improve business-to-business trading comes in at number two, with 58 percent earmarking its importance. This is a natural result of Kenya’s dependency on raw materials for food and beverage production.”

ERP is enjoying a positive response in Kenya, with 44 percent of those surveyed expressing a desire to invest and migrate. Warehouse automation trails just behind at 39 percent, and Business Intelligence at 38 percent.

E-commerce, managed services outsourcing, cybersecurity, CRM, cloud data migration, smart technologies, infrastructure and robotics follow at 37 percent, 32 percent, 29 percent, 27 percent, 27 percent, 26 percent, 21 percent and 13 percent respectively.

Speaking during the launch of the survey findings at Serena Hotel, Nairobi yesterday, Doug Hunter, head of the customer and ecosystem enablement at Syspro Africa noted that the pandemic has prompted the need for diversification and innovation in changing global market policies to help businesses adapt to the ‘new normal’ of the digitised world.

“While we have seen an expedited global move towards diversification particularly in digital transformation in the manufacturing and distribution sector, Kenya’s uptake has been much slower,” he said.

Interestingly, he added, as many as 41 percent of the CFOs surveyed have yet to record their digital return on investments – with 7 percent not sure if any were received and 31 percent still planning on investigating.

“The return on digital investments comes down to how companies deploy the technology they acquire. It is not how much you spend that matters; it is how […]

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