Inetum helps Le Matin Group revamp its ERP
Inetum helps Le Matin Group revamp its ERP
Inetum has been working with the Le Matin Group for 20 years. Latest work in progress: upgrade their Sage X3 ERP. A project in which Inetum has once again showed itself worthy of its client's trust by finding solutions to specific needs.
Le Matin Group, a Moroccan company that started its printing business in 1908, today specializes in editorial offers (publishing of daily newspapers, news websites, audiovisual media), services (communication consulting, advertising space and commercial platforms) and printing (with a workshop floor of 26,000 m2). Together with its historical profile, the group remains resolutely turned towards the future. “We were the first to use QR codes in a newspaper, the first to launch a news website with lematin.ma, and we are present on all digital channels,” says Kamal El Alami, Deputy General Manager of the group.
The company's history has been intertwined with that of Inetum for the past twenty years. In 2003, the Maroc Soir Group called on the IT services company to roll out Sage X3. “It was our first ERP and its purpose was to simplify tasks and to integrate them,” recalls Kamal El Alami, who particularly likes the open aspect of the solution. “In the past, we had software packages that worked in silos, but also specific ones developed in-house. What's great about Sage X3 is that it can be interfaced with our own solutions so that invoicing is done entirely within the ERP system.”
Today, the Casablanca-based company, which employs some 380 people spread between headquarters, the printing plant, and 12 regional branches, centralizes finance, purchasing and sales, human resources management, and business solutions including CAPM (Computer-Aided Production Management) under Sage X3. Centralizing data makes it possible to manage the support functions of the five companies in the group in a synchronized manner and to finalize financial statements ahead of deadline. “Thanks to these solutions, we can close the balance sheet a few weeks after the end of the accounting year, so we no longer have to deal with that end-of-year stress,” the Deputy General Manager points out. “This means that we end the year in February instead of late March.”
“Sage X3 helps us in our Lean and Agile approach”
The integration of the ERP has also facilitated the company's compliance with Moroccan legislation, which now requires a digital declaration of balance sheets. “The most important thing for us is that the Sage solution was able to support us in our Lean and Agile approach, to be more efficient, focus on the essential, and eliminate repetitive tasks in order to benefit from a consolidated efficient flow,” Kamal El Alami explains.
Recently, the Le Matin Group embarked on the digitalization of its editorial and management services as well as in its printing business. Sage X3 will integrate this development through a version upgrade, from 6.5 to 11. According to Kamal El Alami, it won't be a major upheaval since many processes are already in place. But he does point out two notable improvements. One is that it's now easier to access the system. “We no longer use a VPN to log in from outside. We now do it via the web and mobile, which is very handy for a multisite organization,” he says. The other advantage is that preparatory VAT reports, which were unavailable with the previous version of the ERP, can now be used with this upgrade. This will facilitate invoicing.
At the time of writing, the Sage X3 upgrade project is still under way. The test servers were deployed at the end of 2021 along with the first test results. The final switch is scheduled for the end of March or beginning of April 2022, after the closing of the accounting year and the year-end inventory. “It is difficult to combine daily routine with project mode,” Kamal El Alami explains. But the first feedback has been positive. “We now know what the system is capable of. Some hitches will be sorted out with the new version.”
“Inetum will always be more than a supplier for us”
The success of the project is due in large part to the attentiveness of the Inetum teams. The preparation of the project was effectively delayed by the choice of a Sage X3 version. The default version 12 did not meet the needs of Maroc Soir Group due to licensing issues. “We were in a Go-No Go situation, and we were leaning more towards No Go. But fortunately, we were able to find solutions in good understanding and with a complete three-way collaboration between Inetum, Sage and ourselves. Without flexibility on the part of Inetum, the project would have failed,” Mr El Alami says. “We eventually opted for version 11, for which the licensing policy better corresponds to the expectations of a press publisher.”
This episode illustrates the unique relationship between the two companies. As the deputy general manager says, “Inetum will always be more than a supplier for us. They're a real partner and proved it during the last negotiations.”
It's also a relationship that lasts. “Of course, there's no such thing as a perfect world. But the best indicator of satisfaction is a relationship that continues over time. If we weren't satisfied today with the general way the relationship was going, we would not have remained partners for 20 years.”
Inetum will have the opportunity to show its steadfastness. “In an increasingly complex situation, the challenges we face are always there and we hope that, in easy as well as challenging times, Inetum will find the solutions to support us and help us keep our business going for years to come,” says Kamal El Alami. Between Groupe Le Matin and Inetum, the story could well continue for another 20 years.