For small and medium-sized companies that aim to impact their markets rather than focusing on scaling, it is critical to have a quality supply chain management system (SCM) in place.
Transtek Systems, a 15-year-old company that addresses SCM challenges, aims to fill that need. Transtek has dedicated a large chunk of its efforts to help startups and SMEs build their supply chain systems for applications like web host management, procurement, financial and human resources, maintenance, production, manufacturing and sales.
The company was founded in Syria in 2000, and has since established offices in Dubai, Riyadh, and Beirut, and continues to target the Middle East market.
Transtek partnered with Oracle recently to address the SMB enterprise market in the UAE, and organized it’s first networking event to help SMEs with their supply chain management systems in Sharjah last March.
“The event confirmed the massive opportunity in the SMB sector, said Husam Khaskieh, Managing Director and CTO at Transtek Systems. “Also significant was Oracle's endorsement of our Compass Supply Chain. It is a milestone that recognizes years of hard work and investment.”
Follow the Compass
Compass ERP, an Oracle-based dual-language (English-Arabic) Enterprise Resource Planning System, integrates operations of medium-to-large factories across 20 modules. It’s designed to support, automate, manage, control and monitor business processes and functions within an enterprise.
ERP software integrates all departments and functions across a company onto a single computer system to serve all those departments’ needs. Doing so it helps set up and implement processes.
Companies typically use ERP systems to standardize and quicken manufacturing processes, reduce inventory, integrate financial information, track customer orders, and standardize HR data.
With distribution partners in Saudi Arabia, UAE, and Lebanon, Transtek’s Compass ERP includes more than 2,000 screens, 50,000 fields, 1,000 reports, 8,000 criteria, and 1,200 database tables.
While Compass ERP is the company’s flagship product, the system is modular, and offers several stand-alone systems, including Compass Financials, HR, fixed assets, inventory, and several others. The company has expertize in industry verticals like pharmaceuticals, textiles, F&B, apparel and shipping.
We asked Khaskieh a few questions on the challenges startups face building their supply chains and how an ERP system can help.
Wamda: What are some of the major challenges retail and manufacturing companies face in regards to their supply chains?
Khaskieh: There are strategic, tactical, and operational challenges. On the strategic level, companies need to deal with long term production capacity, inventory levels, and management of distribution channels. Tactically, companies need to meet their annual budgets, monitor performance, and bridge demand and supply sides. Finally, managers will need to deal with day to day operations, including Material Requirement Planning (MRP), scheduling, production planning, and routing.
Companies would like to manage inventory, keeping it at the lowest possible level, and to be able to respond to market demand quickly and efficiently. So they want to know which products to buy, and which sales to make so that customers are happy.
Wamda: Why is it important for startups in the Arab region to implement an ERP integrated system?
Khaskieh: The more efficient your operation is the more resources you will have for growth. At the same time, an integrated system can give you valuable information that helps you make informed decisions. For example, you would know which products are moving the fastest, and the ones that make you the most profits. You will be able to tweak your plans accordingly.
Wamda: Please share some success stories from your clients after implementing Compass ERP systems.
Khaskieh: We have a major pharmaceuticals manufactures that was able to decrease inventory waste by over 50% in less than one year after implementing Compass. They were able to alter production plans to use their stock of active ingredients within expiry dates, and bring down stock levels to produce just in time. Another client was able to increase product availability by over 70% by using Compass to evaluate their stock levels, matching it with historical sales data, lowering inventory variances by over 50%. A client in the oil services business was able to reduce freight costs by 25% using Compass to consider lead time necessary in their procurement planning. The same client reduced maintenance and repair costs by 75% by using Compass to schedule, maintain, and ensure availability of spare parts while keeping the parts stock level at its lowest.
Wamda: What's Transtek's next big move?
Khaskieh: It’s the cloud and we are already there. Compass Fixed Assets is the first enterprise module that we launched in the cloud, and other products are in the pipeline. The trend is picking up quite quickly in the region, and we are going to be ready for it.