Technology

FactoryTALK episode six: Sage UK discuss Supply chain, Industry 4.0, data management and the importance of apprenticeships.

In this week’s edition of FactoryTALK with Richard Jordan, we report on all the latest news from around the manufacturing sector. The industry is in a battle to recover, survive and grow, as we exit the pandemic.

With over 35 years of supplying its accounting and financial management software to industry, SAGE has over 3 million customers worldwide with over 1 million based in the UK. As an excellent barometer of industry performance, Richard discussed the company, its activities and the route forward with Robert Sinfield, VP of Product at Sage X3.

Headquartered in Newcastle, the British multinational states that approximately 63% of the private industry sector is paid via Sage software. Robert tells us: “Finance in industry has always been traditionally thought of as debits and credits, but technology has even encroached on this with the arrival of MTD (Making Tax Digital) from HMRC. Companies have to submit tax information electronically, this is where companies like Sage can start to provide knowledge and solutions that enable companies to continue to focus on their core activities. We have a number of products in the market to cater for different ends of the spectrum in terms of sole traders, limited companies and small businesses; and we have a selection of products tailored to those companies. We can provide end-to-end processing for these companies.”

“One thing we have done is to build a cloud technology service. This allows us to connect to HMRC and do the tax filing ourselves. We have built this platform once and we can offer it to multiple customers and this allows us to build an economy of scale that gives a cost-effective price point for customers.”

“From a government perspective and looking at making tax digital, the government has targeted tightening up taxation, but it’s also here to simplify the tax process. It has made things clearer and removed some of the ambiguity that existed. Here at Sage, we have really focused on how to make navigating this as easy as possible for people to manage their submissions.”

Focusing specifically on manufacturers and how technology is benefiting the industry, Robert says: “This is one of my favourite topics to talk about because I think the technology is going to have, and has started, to have a massive impact on manufacturing. Manufacturing is traditionally seen as a stale or staid industry, things move very slowly. If we look at things like Industry 4.0, there is a huge technology transformation and it’s not just about automation and robotics. It’s about adopting new technologies that can influence decision-making to enable improved planning, optimisation, and new types of processes.”

“Technology has become the massive enabler for manufacturers, and most manufacturers may not have a mistrust of technology but certainly a cautious approach to technology. Leading research often points towards manufacturers being behind when it comes technology adoption, but this is very unfair as manufacturers are busy producing goods, running shifts and generally keeping abreast of the business – not having time to investigate the new technologies.”

To find out more about this fascinating interview and the Sage perspective on technology, finance management and accounting and how it is all moving forward in the manufacturing industry, tune in now.

Sage is a founder member of FactoryNOW, the new initiative launched to help the British manufacturing sector boost sales, collaborate and shorten supply chains. Visit their site here: https://www.mtdmfg.com/factorynow/sage/

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