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Industry Updates

Getting SMEs Ready For The Digital Revolution

This article first appeared in SIMTech's Publication

Mr Edwin Seah- Founder and CEO- Enhanzcom
Mr Edwin Seah- Founder and CEO- Enhanzcom

Since 2009- local technology company Enhanzcom Pte Ltd has been helping other SMEs in Singapore to digitise their workflow with its core product- Fitprise – a web-based software system designed to fit and integrate business operational workflows for industries.

Fitprise is up to 40 per cent cheaper than solutions from other enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems and can be developed in half the time. The system was created locally at SIMTech and enhanced over the years by Enhanzcom. 

"Many systems on the market have a pre-defined workflow. What we provide is a system that can be customised to each company's individual workflow. Fitprise reduces the effort to develop a system-" said Enhanzcom Founder and Chief Executive Officer- Edwin Seah.

"We further developed the platform to suit the needs of the market. As time passed- customers wanted more enhancements so we have added these improvements to meet their needs." SMEs who use Fitprise benefit from lower costs and improved productivity. One of the company's first clients- local cable system firm LanTroVision- adopted Fitprise in late 2009 to address issues of staff accountability and ownership of projects. Since then- LanTroVision has saved at least $150-000 in manpower and time savings annually as a result of implementing Fitprise.

Mr Seah explains the benefits of the Fitprise solution
Mr Seah explains the benefits of the Fitprise solution

Unified Configurable Architecture

The technology behind Fitprise was developed by SIMTech researcher Dr Song Bin and his team.

Dr Song realised that many SMEs did not have the resources to integrate their IT systems into their workflow. He worked with two SMEs to explore how they could digitise and streamline their workflow- but felt that it took too much time to build ERP solutions from scratch for each company.

"I wanted to create a software platform that could be easily configured and quickly deployed in different companies and industries-" said Dr Song.

His solution was a Unified Configurable Architecture (UCA) software development platform that would later drive the Fitprise system. When Mr Seah met Dr Song in 2007 through a mutual friend- he immediately sensed a business opportunity. He subsequently started Enhanzcom with funds from his own pocket- his wife and another investor.

Enhanzcom licensed the UCA platform from SIMTech in 2008 and developed it further to become Fitprise. It took another two years before the product was ready for commercialisation.

DID YOU KNOW?

  • Over the last five years- Enhanzcom has seen revenue growth of 45 per cent and it has become profitable
  • The company is focusing on growing its presence in Indonesia and predicts that the market could contribute up to 30 per cent of its revenue in the next two to three years

An Enhanzcom team member discusses the Fitprise system with a customer
An Enhanzcom team member discusses the Fitprise system with a customer

Building A Business from Scratch

Mr Seah said that Enhanzcom’s entire business was built on the core technology provided by SIMTech. “Our company was built around the UCA platform developed by SIMTech. Without it- there would be no business.” He added that beyond providing the technology- SIMTech has also helped to reach out to the market to promote the Fitprise solution- helping Enhanzcom overcome the limitation of having only a 10-person team. “SIMTech is like our big brother. With them by our side- customers are more confident when they take on our solution.”

Mr Seah noted that- in recent years- SIMTech has become more proactive in understanding the needs of industries. The knowledge it has gained has helped it to develop solutions that can be used without the need for modifications.

SIMTech is like our big brother. With them by our side- customers are more confident when they take on our solution.

Mr Edwin Seah- Founder and CEO- Enhanzcom

Expanding Abroad

Looking ahead- Mr Seah is planning to expand internationally with Fitprise. Already- the company has tied up with partners in Indonesia- Malaysia and the Philippines. Nonetheless- he feels that there is still much potential in the Singapore market. “We have to progress beyond the local shores- but I feel that Singapore still has a large- untapped market in the SME space.

There are around 180-000 SMEs here and only a small percentage has adopted digitisation and ERP solutions-” he said.

Enhanzcom is also looking to work with SIMTech to leverage UCA for applications such as business intelligence and business mobility. “We want to see how we can tap SIMTech’s resources to help us in this area. We have to move with the times- we can’t be using the same technology from 10 years ago.”

He added: “Our journey together is not ending; it is taking on a different dimension. SIMTech has the knowledge to understand problems in a deeper way- while we- as the commercial company- understand the market. So- there is synergy: When we tell SIMTech there is a need- it can tell us if it has the technology to meet those needs.”

Dr Song Bin- Senior Scientist- SIMTech (left)- with Mr Seah
Dr Song Bin- Senior Scientist- SIMTech (left)- with Mr Seah