Sage Pastel remains at the cutting edge of business software with its mobility innovations

22 July 2013

July has seen Sage Pastel, the local accounting and business software giant, demonstrate its industry-leading mobility innovations. The new Windows 8 Tablet App for My Business Online was showcased at the company’s accountants’ focus day and the Mobile App for Sage Evolution caused a stir at the company’s Evolution customer day.

In typical cutting edge fashion, Steven Cohen, MD of Sage Pastel Accounting, has directed the company’s development team towards providing mobility to the Sage Pastel suite of accounting and business software. “I know we’re ahead of the development curve but I also know that increasingly, businesses will come to depend on three things: mobility, mobility, mobility,” he says.

Cohen’s point is that mobility means much more than just arming business executives with mobile devices. “That’s just flirting,” he says. “What we’re doing is improving the ability and readiness of companies to do business. We’re developing enterprise apps that allow our customers to transact anywhere at anytime. That’s mobility.”

Cohen acknowledges that the concept of the cloud and the mobile apps associated with it is a little intimidating for some customers but early adopters are gaining such a competitive advantage that they will drive broader acceptance of super-smart enablement tools.

Sage Pastel My Business Online was launched in 2009, making it SA’s first online accounting program. At the time, it was lauded for how it allowed business owners and accountants to change the way they managed day-to-day financial control. Today, the mobility it offers is widely recognised for how it allows business people on-the-go an ideal solution to shift work habits while also enhancing effectiveness and efficiency.  

Some of the mobility features of the program include a real time bird’s-eye view of the business’s financial status, including sales and purchases. Customer information is also available, allowing users to contact them directly through their mobile device and also check related tasks, process quotes and invoices and email them directly.

Of course, accounting in the cloud offers a wide range of benefits to accountants too, most key being the ability to provide more relevant and constructive input into a client’s business. The program’s bespoke accountant console provides dashboard information of all clients with detailed task information for each one. 

The Sage Evolution ERP Mobile App lets customer-facing staff access real time customer data and inventory details in graphical or grid formats on their handheld devices. Connectivity is a non-issue because the app allows for both off-line and on-line access to data.  This marks a fundamental shift in how sales teams will operate: it means they can create on-the-spot quotes and take instant orders. It means they’re always working with the latest information so it’s virtually impossible to promise the customer something that can’t be delivered. Plus, because orders are received so quickly, delivery is faster. “This is what I mean when I say that enterprise mobility is so much more than your customers being able to reach you on your smart phone.”

Charting the innovative developments released by Sage Pastel over the past few years shows just how in tune the company is with its customer’s needs to do more than just create invoices with their accounting program. “As soon as they understand the extent to which this kind of mobility impacts on the bottom line, our large customers want it. What do our smaller customers want? Exactly the same thing,” says Cohen.

Sage Pastel now boasts a very powerful mobile infrastructure platform for its users. “Whatever software a client buys today has to support their business aspirations going forward and the reality is that the future is a digital one,” says Cohen who believes there will be a rapid acceleration in the development and use of enterprise mobility apps as they gain acceptance and credibility due to the real improvements in business efficiency they offer.

“In fact, I believe that the future will see considerably more mobile app developments than traditional PC-type apps.”