Managing its business processes with caniasERP, Unimix LLC has experienced a successful enterprise digital transformation process. In an interview with Unimix LLC Group Internal Auditor Awais Saleem and Unimix LLC IT Engineer Noorulhameen Halil Rahman, we talked about the company's digital transformation journey with caniasERP. Explaining the advantages offered by caniasERP company officials said, "We have easily overcome all the chaos in our processes with the caniasERP system."
Can you introduce your company? What kind of studies are you carrying out?
Unimix (Universal Concrete Products Ltd) is Dubai`s leading ready mix concrete producer and supplier. Founded in 1977, Universal Concrete Products Ltd Co (Unimix) LLC specializes in delivering high-grade concrete mixes in UAE. With a core focus on creating sustainable value for clients and offering innovative products, the company produces various types of construction products to satisfy the needs of its customers. The company prides itself to be part of some most challenging and iconic projects in the region including Makhtoum Bridge, Burj Al Arab, Emirates Tower and Burj Khalifa. With more than 30 million cubic meters of concrete supplied to various projects in Dubai has led Urnimix the most efficient and innovative building material company. Today the firm is carrying forward its legacy of meeting current and future needs of clients by constantly reinventing its approach, strategy and technology with a fleet of more than 200 transit mixers, 25 mobile pumps, 30 static pumps, 70 placing booms and 14 batching plants.
What were the reasons that make you think you need an ERP system?
Unimix being a manufacturing company, needed complete ERP Solution to streamline business processes and drove automation in manufacturing. In order to streamline the process, we had to have all the data available in our centralized location with complete visibility and all functionalities such as sales, procurement, inventory, production, finance and delivery. We needed good coordination in our ready mix supply chain so we could optimize our resources in a way that able to deliver the most ROI at all levels of the business in all our activities.
Did you use different software before caniasERP?
We used to have a software since the early 90s but it was not integrated completely. We had to do many things in the system manually such as purchasing. We had to enter all the information and it was costing time. We needed software that allow us to do financial analyzes with integration. When we wanted to do purchasing, we had to go inventory and reconcile all these items. We needed a system that allows us to control the whole cycle.
Can you give us some information about your ERP selection process?
We contacted many software companies in Dubai. We have designed our procedure first and then we spotted the things we are doing manually. We have informed the consultants that we have to change our manual procedure into an automatic system. As I said before we have many tailor made processes and we cannot change our mix designs. In these circumstances we have contacted with caniasERP they have reasonable design and price also. Additionally, whenever we called the consultants about any problem, they came up with a very good solution at that time.
How did you meet IAS and caniasERP?
Basically we needed an ERP software. In concrete business, we have many tailor made processes. For example, we receive an order form customer with some specific materials in it for the purpose of the construction. So we wanted a user-friendly ERP system and when we need to alter any material in it, it had to be immediate. We understood that our previous software was not a complete one after we met with caniasERP. We did not have any record about maintenance. We had recorded on inventory but we had to deal problems with manual entries. These circumstances led us to IAS and caniasERP.
What features of the software have been the determinants of the demo meetings with the IAS sales team?
The reporting part was very impressive on caniasERP. User can also prepare a report even if he/she does not have an IT knowledge. That part is very user friendly I can say. Also, the purchasing part was very good for us. We have more control over the purchasing side and our users are very satisfied with the module. When we were not using caniasERP, our invoice process was taking so long. Now we are able to close accounts shorter than half of the initial time.
What were your selection criteria during the ERP purchase process? What was your reason for choosing IAS?
Selection of an ERP is a long process and after studying different software programs we were able to decide about IAS. First, we have done detailed working from our end so that we buy an ERP which fulfills all our requirements. We decided on some specifications such as; all manual workflow should be automated, it should already being used in any manufacturing business (ready-mix), people in every functional area should be able to use it easily (user-friendly), integration with existing system should be possible, technology and future scalability, customization, budget (value for money), proper training to be given till the project go live.
Which applications are you currently using over caniasERP?
We are using Finance, HR, Maintenance, Procurement, Asset Management, EDI module, Document Management modules at the moment.
Have special solutions been produced for your company? What kind of studies have been done?
For HR, we have made many developments. For Purchase Management and also for Maintenance Module. We have 3 types of maintenance system working at Unimix such as daily, km wise and time-wise. There is an integration with the diesel through some EDI protocol with diesel pumps. Whenever the vehicle gets diesel from these pumps, the data flows through the caniasERP, and we follow the consumption and the fuel filter change or maintenance time.
What would you like to say about IAS' consultancy services and project teams?
What we feel is, for any reason when we call them and we get an answer. Whenever we call them for any issue or problem, they responded quickly and they came with a good solution all the time. We had no doubt that we will receive our response in the shortest time possible.
What changes have occurred in your company structure since the beginning of the transition to ERP system? How did the project contribute to your company?
The main change was on the reporting side. We had all the data in our previous software but we were not able to get the information as we wanted. We had to check all the vouchers to observe the general view of the relative department. To be able to analyze the data, we generated a report which we achieved with caniasERP. Regarding the HR side, we reached to level that all the important documents related to HR are now in our control. We can share these documents with the responsible person without any problem and also can analyze the data smoothly in terms of HR. Also, the document management gave us comfort that we have all the files we need in the system under the control of related departments and these files are reachable from anywhere for any authorized personnel.
What are your future plans and goals for the project?
Until this time, we have been very satisfied with the outcome of this project. Maybe we can plan for enhancing this project with our other group companies. We might use the budget module in future but it is not certain yet.
How do you evaluate the effect of digitalization on institutionalization? How does ERP contribute to a company that wants to grow and brand?
To transform the administrative work of any organization into a more flexible and dynamic organization, digitization is a key component. Information technology and artificial intelligence are now part of any organization strategic goal which determine the identity of the organization. Any growing company with limited resources can organize themselves with few defined processes. Now with the introduction of cloud-based ERP, investing in hardware and server is not necessary and during real-time, we can assess any part of our supply chain. Growth relates to making new strategies & planning new lines bases on what your customer is reacting right now so with the help of ERP more time is spent on executing new strategies.
What advice would you like to advise companies on the use of ERP in your industry?
They have to do a study on their company. They have to decide on a goal about their objective and needs. Our goals in the first step were reducing the reporting time. We were working to close an account for a month sometimes and our goal was to reduce this time. These were our two main objectives. The definition of objectives clearly is the main key point for this.
Do you recommend caniasERP to companies?
I can recommend caniasERP for the companies who wants to generate variable reports about any department. And also I have to add another advantage of caniasERP which is its user-friendly structure. caniasERP is a system that not asking to follow its procedure, unlikely, system is easily adapting itself according to clients' needs without any problem. We are able to manage our business better than previous times and caniasERP, just made these processes more controllable and reportable. Although we have a very complicated HR management procedure, we are now easily overcoming this complexity with caniasERP, system. For all these reasons, we recommend caniasERP.