Allied Publishing was in need of a system that could provide for end to end integration between the different business platforms. Sage ERP X3 presented itself as the perfect solution to address the company’s sales and distribution functions.
Allied Publishing Limited is a joint venture company owned by Independent Newspapers (including titles such as The Star, Saturday Star, Sunday Independent and Pretoria News) and Times Media (Pty) Ltd (The Sowetan, Business Day, Sunday Times and Sunday World amongst others). The primary business of Allied Publishing is the sales and distribution of the aforementioned newspapers and certain magazines, such as the Mail & Guardian, Junk Mail and The Economist.
Allied Publishing faced certain challenges within their business environment which motivated their decision to upgrade to Sage ERP X3. They required an Enterprise Resource Planning system to ensure integration between the different business platforms. The old technology, used by the financial and accounting system, did not cater for integration between the Publishing System, the Receivables Module, the Cashbook, Inventory Module and the Vehicle Fleet. For example, in the past a request for publishing and distribution was not integrated with the functions of invoicing, receivables and cashbook.
Allied Publishing also required an effective Inventory Management System, which had to interface with the procurement system and the financial system in the area of ordering, inventory management and cost accumulated per vehicle allocated to the relevant departments.
Allied Publishing placed their trust in Times 3 Technologies as a vendor. “Times 3 Technologies has a long standing relationship with Allied Publishing Limited, their service has always been commendable and they were the vendor for our previous system, Sage Line 500,” says Sagie Naidoo, financial manager at Allied Publishing.
Implementing Sage ERP X3 was the ideal opportunity for an overall makeover on business processes within Allied Publishing. They started with workshops to re- engineer the relevant business processes and together with Times 3 Technologies determined deliverables the new system had to meet as well as areas for customisation.
A pilot system was then created and users were invited to training sessions for specific modules. After the training sessions, staff continued to familiarise themselves with the system and any issues encountered for enhancement and correction, were then communicated to the vendor.
An implementation plan was formulated for the changeover and the migration was initially done on a test database, before going onto a live database. Verification of balances was confirmed per module, thereafter transactional processing began on the live database.
“The implementation of Sage ERP X3 has provided us with a fully integrated end to end solution which now gives us visibility across all the business entities. Our business processes have been re-engineered and the financial system has been designed to optimise efficiency,” says Sagie Naidoo.
“Sage ERP X3 has powerful toolsets that help you confidently streamline time-consuming financial and operational processes using advanced workflow, alerts and business process management technologies. Moreover, the breadth of the Sage ERP X3 solution extends to supply chain management, warehousing/logistics, service management and mixed mode manufacturing with quality control and document management. In today’s global market, differentiating your company often means speeding up all your business processes to reduce lead times. Not only is it a way to win new business, but it often justifies higher prices and margins while improving customer satisfaction. In all cases, automating your procurement, manufacturing and customer management processes will help your business gain significant competitive advantage and minimise costs and risks associated with high inventory levels,” says Keith Fenner, senior vice president for sales at Sage ERP Africa.