SAP Malaysia Sdn Bhd Managing Director Kok Cheong Hong was appointed the leadership role last November 2019 to continue the acceleration of SAP’s 25 years successful operation in the country.
Many businesses, both global enterprises and SMEs, have been caught off-guard with the unprecedented impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in their operations. Organisations are compelled to rethink their business strategies in congruence with consistently evolving government protocols surrounding the crisis. In Malaysia, Movement Control Order (MCO), the country’s preventive measure to COVID-19 enforcing non-essential businesses to close, has been in effect since March.
For small and medium enterprises (SMEs), SAP Malaysia Sdn Bhd Managing Director Kok Cheong Hong has found technology as its silver lining at these challenging times. Specifically, the MD highlighted the opportunity for SMEs to leverage SAP Business One software for business continuity amidst the pandemic and after MCO is lifted.
“The MCO has demonstrated how technology continues to play an ever-increasing important role in supporting business continuity while increasing the accuracy and accessibility of data, information management, and reporting analysis,” Hong said in a recent statement.
“The MCO also demonstrated the importance of digitisation and moving away from human-managed interfaces and toward machine learning and automated processes,” he added.
The MD stressed that the need for technology advancement will be of high importance even post-MCO. He clarified though that, above all, human connection and expertise play a significant role in the decision-making and communications process to protect and enhance the brand, operations, customers, and various stakeholders.
SMEs’ Silver Lining
Though some SMEs are technology-ready to seamlessly continue business operations in the COVID-19 environment, there are still some that haven’t explored the opportunities of digitalisation. Hong explained and encouraged SMEs to consider technology as an investment more than a cost to be able to, first, thrive, and then eventually sustain growth in these uncertain times. Many software solutions are now made available, scalable, and competitively priced for SMEs to take advantage of.
SAP Malaysia Managing Director explained:
“Technology serves as a business enabler that paves the way for greater productivity, operational efficiencies, and cost-savings.”
“This is a crucial point of a digital transformation journey which SMEs should recognise to overcome the fear that such a process might incur unexpectedly high cost,” he further said.
According to Hong, ‘SAP is for everyone’. SMEs can also evolve into an intelligent enterprise with the right technology. He highlighted SAP Business One (SAP B1) as one of the German company’s ERP software solutions designed for SMEs. Hong said:
“What SAP B1 does is automate key business functions in financials, operations, and human resources so that SMEs can derive greater efficiencies within their operations.”
“SAP is at the forefront of 25 various industries, and we can help SMEs learn from larger enterprises such as making their supply chain process shorter and more effective,” he stressed.
Designed for small and midsize businesses, SAP Business One offers an affordable way to several key business areas. It is a single, integrated solution that captures all critical business information for immediate access and company-wide use. The SAP ERP solution boasts of its modularity and flexibility having more than 500 add-on solutions, custom-made to industries, or special functions.
Hong said that intelligent enterprises leverage technology-enabled capabilities to collect and connect data that was previously unrecognized in resolving challenges. In a changing market, technology enables organisations to respond accordingly in no time.
Encouraging SMEs to become intelligent enterprises, the SAP Malaysia Head further explained:
“What’s more, intelligent enterprises are able to better collect insights from customers, employees, products, and brands at every touch point, use powerful technology to sense opportunities, risks, and trends and turn this intelligence into action across every part of the business.”