This year our systems will deliver more strategic value to customers than ever before

Posted by  Stephan Sieber

It’s an exciting time for ERP and enterprise applications. The shift to an everything as a service (XaaS) economy, where companies are moving away from one-time product sales to service-focused business models with products leased, and provided via subscription services is driving massive change.

At the same time, rapid technological innovation means enterprise systems are becoming more sophisticated and responsive, with support for mobile devices and cloud functionality now commonplace.

A new kind of enterprise software

Modern business systems are required today to help companies rewire the way they work for the XaaS economy. To change the way they compete and engage with customers, partners and their own people. For the last few years, we have focused on helping service industry customers to achieve this. This focus and our sector expertise is helping them to generate rapid value in their strategic processes. We are building our solutions to deliver intuitive experiences based on mission critical data, with a digital front end that delivers the analytics and mobile experience people expect today. We support our customer’s broader business efforts to transform IT into a platform for business innovation and growth.

This year we will continue on our mission to help more customers generate strategic value. We continue to invest in our software from the back-office to the front-office, delivering new self-driving user experiences with simpler user access to our solutions through innovations like Wanda, our digital assistant. We’re delivering state of the art PSA and reporting and analytics with Unit4 prevero. We’re focused on cloud delivery and supporting customers to move to the cloud at their own speed.

We’re preparing to launch the latest releases of our core applications this Spring, including significant enhancements focused on improving user productivity and intelligence. By innovating on top of Microsoft Azure, we’re delivering more intelligent self-driving experiences in our products that will directly boost people productivity for our customers. We’re on a mission to get users enjoying their software more. Our goal is to free up space for people to do more real work, automating and self-driving as much as possible.

What’s coming…

Our Spring ’18 release of PSA Suite delivers more insight into project detail than ever before so organizations can optimize productivity and project success. With our software helping them wherever they work, professional services organizations can liberate their people to work better and smarter, whether they’re at their desk or in the field. Our PSA Suite and Business World ERP combined delivers the insight into their business they need to drive project success and be more efficient. This means our customers can add more value to their clients, and in doing so grow their business more profitably. They can manage their entire services operation in a single, integrated cloud ERP suite that’s quick to roll out, a joy to work with, and fast to deliver real benefits.

Similarly, we’re helping more and more public services organizations to streamline and automate where possible, so their people can focus on doing what they really want to do: serving citizens. Since 2012, our business software has helped save Wokingham Borough Council over £30m. We’ve also saved their people lots of time, by making their admin tasks quicker and easier to complete. With all that time and money, they’ve been able to focus on making Wokingham a great place to live.

State of the art reporting and analytics with Unit4 prevero is also being extended to all customers this Spring through sector specific Value Accelerators designed around industry KPIs. We understand for example that in Not for Profit, people work hard for the causes they support, and we want to liberate them to work smarter and better. In education, we take care of the routine tasks, so Admissions and Advancement leaders can focus on recruiting great students and ensuring their success.

At the same time, our digital assistant is getting smarter. In Spring, we’re releasing Wanda with new and improved skills that will help to free users from their ERP system with a modern interface that people love to use.

Highpoint, one of Unit4’s strategic alliance partners is actively testing Wanda in order to investigate its potential for use within the business as well as the businesses of its growing customer base. Ben Houghton, Managing Director, Highpoint, said: “Unit4 is working with the latest technologies on the Azure cloud platform to develop Wanda’s capabilities and what we’ve seen is impressive in terms of its functional scope and market readiness. Our journey with Wanda is just beginning and we are excited by the promise of a new self-driving user.”

It’s an exciting but challenging time for service sector organizations as they rework their IT and business capabilities for the XaaS economy. Organizations that get it right will increase efficiency, cut costs, and be able to take advantage of new opportunities in a dynamic marketplace. And some are already starting to do that. By reworking core systems as a set of customer and value-focused, outcome-driven building blocks they will continue to generate value for years to come.

Stephan Sieber

Stephan Sieber

Stephan was appointed CEO of Unit4 in 2016, responsible for leading the development and execution of the company's long term strategy. He joined Unit4 in 2014 as EVP Strategy and Operations and became responsible for global sales operations in 2015. Stephan previously worked for SAP where he held multiple leadership positions over more than 10 years including Managing Director of SAP Switzerland and Chief Operating Officer of the region DACH (Germany, Switzerland and Austria). He was also a member of the management team of SAP Germany. He completed an Advanced Management Program at INSEAD in 2002 and an MBA with the University of Toronto in 2007.