Large asset-intensive companies, such as Eskom, Foskor, Rand Water, Umgeni Water and Coca-Cola Canners in South Africa, as well as Chilanga Cement (Zambia) and Bamburi Cement (Kenya) further afield have benefited from the work and asset management system in the past. In fact, the South African technology firm has installed the software at more than 200 plants throughout the Southern African continent. These clients will soon be able to upgrade to the new version to streamline their operations and reduce the cost of ownership realised through Web technology.
The new version uses a 100% pure Internet component-based architecture that allows customers to support their enterprise through a Web-browser. This lowers the total cost of enterprise application portfolios and eases operations by reducing the time and cost associated with hardware, deployment, maintenance and training. The product's distributed component-base architecture (DCA) forms the foundation for the next generation of application deployment.
The software's functionality supports the entire indirect or industrial supply chain through unequalled data integration capabilities and has subsequently enabled companies to remove costs from their indirect supply chain through improved demand-side planning and reduced investment in the resource supply side.
It is reported that the software was designed to help organisations reduce equipment downtime, closely control and track maintenance expenses, cut spare parts inventories and costs, improve safety, increase purchasing efficiency and more effectively deploy productive assets, personnel and other resources.
With the new version, all of these capabilities will still be in place, with the added bonus of a Web-architected design. Gone are the days of spiralling expenditure on hardware upgrades to satisfy the need of resource-hungry business applications. Cost of ownership is reduced by Web-architected products because applications can be accessed through a Web browser, which significantly reduces hardware requirements on the client's side, while support is only centrally required. No plug-ins are required – the browser is the only software required on a personal computer or a handheld device. A Web-architected solution also expands access to applications globally, by way of a simple Web browser. An additional benefit is that deployment options are improved. Customers can now choose either centralised or decentralised deployment approaches, including multiple organisations or multiple sites on a single database.
MST' sales manager for Africa Danie van Vuuren believes that the new version will greatly benefit enterprise asset management in Africa. Capital asset-intensive companies in Africa can now benefit from a solution that is corporately hosted and maintained, but accessed by remote sites. Information availability and communications between remote plant operators and their headquarters will be greatly enhanced. Headquearters staff will be able to audit, support and give information technology related services to remote sites without leaving their offices. The South African company's single-minded goal is to empower clients with leading-edge technology and expertise to make their businesses run better, more productively and more efficiently. The firm further believes that African companies have unique challenges that cannot be solved by generic, one-size-fits-all resource-intensive solutions. It is a firm principle at the company to identify the unique requirements of each client and it endeavours to find individual solutions to fit in with a client's overall organisational strategy. It maintains that the new software package is the perfect tool for these tailored-to-fit solutions.