T3T: More than Implementation Partners to Solenta Aviation
An Interview with Horacio Pereira – Finance Director for Solenta Investment Holdings (Pty) Ltd, South Africa
Solenta Aviation, a specialised commercial aviation company founded twenty years ago, services clients’ aviation needs in oil and gas, humanitarian aid, mining, scheduled airlines, air freight and tourism.
Their legacy ERP system was not able to keep up with the demands of their growing international aviation business and needed replacing.
T3T spoke with Horacio Pereira, Solenta Investment Holdings’ Finance Director, to unpack their three-year journey with Sage X3 and T3T, and beyond.
T3T: What were the challenges / frustrations that caused you to invest in ERP software?
HP: We knew our legacy Microsoft system needed replacing. We were working in silos and handling data manually, using spreadsheets to calculate or manipulate data, before capturing it into the legacy system.
As a result, there were version control issues and the business was exposed to risk due to human errors.
1. Empower employees and executives
We needed a system that would give our employees the tools they needed to carry out their jobs effectively, as well as giving management control and clarity into the entire business for fast and accurate decision-making.
2. Multi-location, multi-currency, multi-language
Also, because our organisational footprint spans across several countries and multiple local languages, we needed a solution that could handle the complexities of our inventory, warehousing, and logistics management requirements, as well as bring strong financial management functionality together with its associated business intelligence capabilities.
Financially, we needed a system that would allow for multiple ledgers for individual components and reporting across entities in different currencies as well as consolidation for reporting in one specific functional currency. Amongst other things, we particularly needed a system that could automatically import multiple foreign exchange rates on a daily basis into the general ledger to be applied against every transaction for accurate financial reporting and executive decision-making. With the legacy system, this was an entirely manual process.
4. Local and capable
Additionally, our legacy system only offered support from overseas if we were going to enhance it with added system developments, which was highly frustrating. We needed a local solution that was robust enough to accommodate our complex operations, and flexible enough to meet our unique multi-user requirements.
T3T: Why did you choose Sage X3?
HP: Sage X3 offered a fully integrated ERP solution with multi-currencies and expanded reporting capabilities.
T3T: Why did you decide on using T3T as your implementation partner?
HP: Once we had decided on Sage X3 and informed Sage South Africa of our requirements, Sage South Africa recommended three implementation partners.
We met with Francois from T3T, and after listening carefully to what we needed, he assured us that T3T could bring Sage X3’s 80% fit to a near 100% fit.
More than empty promises, he gave us clear examples of how Sage X3 and T3T had already overcome these challenges at other enterprises and even brought Sachit and Herman from their development team to demonstrate capabilities and solutions.
We knew we loved the product, and T3T was clearly capable and experienced. However, more than the bells and whistles of the highly functional Sage X3, and T3T’s clear technical acumen, we wanted to purchase a partnership that extends beyond the customisation and implementation phase.
We needed a partner who cared about developing strong client relations, who provided local support, and who could provide further deployment into our offices in Africa when needed.
Times 3 Technologies ticked all the boxes.
T3T: What value has Sage X3 and T3T brought to your business?
1. Automated administration and accounting
HP: Sage X3 has replaced our dependence on spreadsheets and manual processes, and radically reduced administration up and downstream. Team members were now able to focus their time on value-added activities since the administrative burden was now carried by the system.
2. Fast, accurate reporting
Sage X3 also allows us to give accurate financial figures to the board of directors in US dollars at the click of a button, while keeping local tax authorities and other legislations satisfied with local currency values.
3. Greater efficiency and productivity
More than that, our people understand what they need to do and what their expected outcomes need to be, just by following the system. Human errors, omissions, and oversights – and their intrinsic business risk – are radically reduced, while efficiencies, productivity, and clarity are increased.
4. One system, multi-locations
Training of non-English speaking employees, such as our French and Portuguese-speaking counterparts, is streamlined by the system maintaining the same look and feel and data throughout the business, no matter the location, while operating in their own desired language.
5. Personalised partnership
More importantly, when we need support, we can pick up the phone and speak to someone who deeply understands our business and is less than 10 kilometers away from our head office. We’re not dealing with a call centre, we’re not waiting for a different time zone, we’re speaking to people with whom there’s a relationship; there’s history.
T3T: Is there anything else you’d like to add?
HP: T3T understands the challenges within our organisation – they have brought solutions to the table that have improved efficiency in our business processes across the board.
I would go so far as calling T3T more than an implementation partner, but rather a trusted business advisor.
Had we not gone with Sage X3 or had we chosen another implementation partner, would we be where we are today? I highly doubt that. The collective effort for Sage X3 and T3T has brought about the efficiencies we see and enjoy today.
Contact us to create your own unique success story with Sage X3 and T3T.