web analytics

Our Blog

From its humble beginnings 16 years ago, Cellulant has grown to become a leading Pan-African financial technology company providing a one-stop digital marketplace platform with offices in 18 countries that service 34 markets in Africa.

Cellulant was founded in 2004 by Ken Njoroge & Bolaji Akinboro with $3,000. The founders, currently Cellulant’s Co-CEOs saw an opportunity to build a world class business in Africa & to transform customers’ lives through mobile technology. Today, Cellulant runs a technology platform for marketplaces that matter to Africans. They also provide the underlying digital payment infrastructure that solves pertinent problems in Africa faced by businesses, retailers & consumers.

The Challenge

Cellulant has grown from a team of two to more than 450 staff seated across 18 countries. Cellulant recognized that to make this growth of people sustainable, a dynamic payment management system was essential for this.

“We are committed to growing our people, and investing in their growth. One of the fundamental, and possibly basic ways, is to make sure that at the end of the month, they can count on their pay reaching their bank account as we have promised,” Says Sam Kariuki, Chief People Officer at Cellulant. “As we grow in numbers we have increasingly needed to integrate our payroll systems and assure that all staff have a great experience in this particular area.”

Getting started on the Integration journey
Payroll processing was a manually driven part of the business, relying on monster-sized spreadsheets and largely reactive to anything HR related. Simple tasks were burning unnecessary hours each week due to the manual nature of the admin work involved.

Results that matter to the business
Chrispinus Odhiambo, Talent and Culture Operations at Cellulant states that with the integration of eHorizon HRMS in 8 countries, “this has contributed to the effectiveness of how we process payroll. This in turn has increased our productivity. The HRMS has brought simplicity, accuracy, and efficiency to the business.”

With the seamless integration of the payroll management system, processing has become much easier, faster and efficient. Instead of day-to-day admin tasks, the People Growth Team is concentrating on more strategic initiatives – and placing employee experiences at the heart of what they do.  It hasn’t stopped there. Chrispinus is now exploring more features through eHorizon HRMS, meaning he can look outwards strategically, rather than inwards. He is tackling forward talent planning, managing resources more effectively and reducing time spent on simple tasks such as leave management and employee self-service.

“The reports tabulated provide insight and enable us to effectively and strategically plan for our company.” says Chrispinus.

 

Kenyans are extraordinary marathon & long-distance runners, earning us world recognition as exemplary athletes. This March 2020, Zamara presented the 7th Annual Retirement Conference with their theme being “Running The Retirement Marathon”enlightening delegates on how one can run your retirement race successfully.

The Zamara Retirement Conference 2020 offered an array of seasoned experts in the pension & finance sector like Miriam Musaali, COO of Zamara Uganda who touched on issues of effective trusteeship coupled with practical tools & guides.

Software Technologies was proud to sponsor the event with Chets Mukherjee, our Operations Director, speaking about digitizing pension governance with eHorizon eBoard.

eHorizon eBoard is a Governance Solution that helps to manage a Board’s affairs at an efficient and effective level, and by extension the Board Committees and Management Meetings.

The development and functionality is based on good Corporate Governance and International Best Practices and manages several aspects of the Board. The features at a glance can be summarized as below:

  • Board Minutes & Agendas
  • Containerizing all relevant documents needed for the board members from time to time
  • Director Evaluation
  • Directors information, communication & skill matrix
  • Corporate Compliance dashboard
  • Organizational Plans dashboard
  • On-line approvals
  • Discussion forums
  • Video Conferencing.

 

“eHorizon eBoard has added value to our organization in terms of our board meeting management processes. It is a great system that has greatly helped our organization in making our board directors proactive.”

Ms. Leah Mumbi- Head of ICT, Industrial & Community Development Corporation

Established in 1954, ICDC has over 60 years of experience and stability in promoting projects that create wealth and jobs for Kenyans in diverse sectors of the economy. We enjoy a heritage of expertise and stability as we promote businesses with the potential to become tomorrow’s blue chip companies. These include Manufacturing, Agro-processing, Energy, ICT, Infrastructure, Financial services and Education sectors.

THE CHALLENGE

WHY SOFTWARE TECHNOLOGIES LIMITED

Leah Mumbi, ICT Manager, states “I like that you are always upgrading the system. The system is constantly adding value to our organization. I feel like we are heard when we see the new updates put on the system. Once I saw the demo, I didn’t think twice about Software Technologies. She also highlighted the impeccable support Software Technologies provides.

RESULTS

Continuity and overall board management: With eBoard, there is continuity in managing the board’s processes. “With the Resources tab we don’t have to worry about where previous documents were stored, print previous bulky board packs as they are easily available” Leah mentions.

Easy updating and sharing of board papers: By providing the board with a central document repository, ICDC has seen an ease in the sharing of board papers. Leah is now able to share corrected documents from any board pack at any time. “I don’t have to worry when I have to send a corrected document, because I am sure everyone will be notified and it will be displayed on the homepage and stored in the briefcase.”

Ensured 24/7 secure access to data from anywhere in the world: Board members have all time access to the meeting pack. “Board members are prepared for the meetings and the CEO mentioned he had observed a sense of proactiveness among the directors.” Leah states.

Savings on time, money and resources: Previously, the organization’s time, printers and paper reams were all excessively used in preparation for board and committee meetings. With eBoard, ICDC has saved close to 50,000 USD in printing and distribution costs. They also continue to make an environmental impact by using less paper and saving more trees.

Data Security and Confidentiality: “eHorizon eBoard is a secure platform and when we use it, we are sure our documents are secure.” Leah states. Software Technologies is ISO 27001 certified and the management systems put in place maintain world class standards of information security.

 

The rise of a successful entrepreneur

It is with great sadness that we announce the death of visionary entrepreneur Jyoti Mukherjee, CEO of Software Technologies Limited (STL). Mukherjee’s career and life path in technology started in 1991 when she and her husband, Sanjiv Mukherjee, started STL. Over the duration of three decades, Mukherjee slowly, steadily, built an award winning business. She steered STL into the future, making it as one of Kenya’s Top 100 Mid-Sized Companies. The competition is a partnership between KPMG and the Daily Nation. STL proceeded to stay on top for a decade. This Top Mid-Sized businesses survey looks at SMEs with an annual turnover falling between Ksh70 million, and Ksh1 billion.

Award-winning top CEO

Jyoti Mukherjee was an accomplished entrepreneur who was respectfully named Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year, a Timeless Woman of Wonder, the Top Businesswoman in ICT, and a Top CEO many times over. Without a doubt she has a substantial number of mentees. Her work in the tech industry also earned her a host of other global acknowledgements. Small wonder she made it to the ICT Hall Of Fame, an award whose recognition was by our very own Ministry of ICT.

New millennium leader

An Indian who made Kenya her home, Mukherjee was more than her much-deserved awards. She grew the business to unimaginable heights. Since 1991 when she launched it, STL has expanded across 3 continents. From West Africa where they designed their first French e-board software, the rest of East Africa and Zambia, all the way to the Middle East. She led STL into the next decade, nay, next millennium, with eHorizon Mkataba, a software that services businesses big and small. It gives them agency over their legal existence and legal processes. It does this by creating a platform that allows them to do all that appertains to contracts. It also serves the probably unintended side effect of teaching and educating all who interact with it on Kenyan contract law.

Creative use of tech

Over time, she found her way inside boardrooms and board member’s minds with her e-governance tool, eHorizon eBoard. This serves the purpose of governing, tracking and centralising communication for board members. It created a virtual boardroom where board members could do business without disrupting their daily work lives. Beyond that, she streamlined the legislation process with e-parliament. This does the work of helping parliamentarians keep track of what would otherwise have been haphazard records.

Jyoti Mukherjee did what technology was made to do; connect people. This she did by building bridges and making their lives easier. It is a safe bet that Mukherjee’s technology touched countless lives beyond the 150 corporations that enjoyed the product of her genius. In addition to that, these likely include all the people who saved time which they then enjoyed with their loved ones, allowing them to care for their families.

Family first

Jyoti Mukherjee was herself a woman who put her family first, an attribute she was known for. It is her son, Chets Mukherjee, who co-runs the company, STL, with Jyoti Mukherjee. Where others saw a need and likely disharmony, she drew inspiration from it. She saw possibilities and solutions where complex problems existed. She brought everyone and everything together into a tight, tidy, organised, easily accessible circle with an elegance and beauty only made evident in one with such symmetry of thought. A problem-solver at her core, she was herself an original. A maverick who stepped into the future before her peers had a chance to put on their shoes, let alone tie their laces.

A beautiful legacy

Her legacy will be best remembered far and wide over her Institute of Software Technology, uplifting the industry by training talent. Here she taught young minds, absorbing the top 5 into her organisation, and sharing them with the industry top players. Numbering hundreds, these students will be a generous part of her legacy. She was not just the Top ICT Businesswoman in Africa (2007). Hers is the kind of life fully lived. Jyoti Mukherjee touched her team of employees, growing from a handful of just 5 to become a powerhouse in East Africa, straight to a global enterprise straddling 3 continents; Africa, the Middle East and UAE.

Similarly, her legacy also lives on. Even though she is gone, thanks to EAPEF (a $63 billion American private equity fund), her business is set to grow bigger and stronger. Their investment allows STL to further spread its wings across Africa not just for its patented technology that has seen them rise to the top, but also owing to its certified training institute.

For a woman who believed in her father’s ideology of “high thinking, simple living,” her description of success is befittingly based on these 6 things. “Planning, focus, self-belief, a positive attitude, love for those around us, and a strong work ethic.” If there ever was something Jyoti Mukherjee would be glad to see live on, it would be this philosophy as her legacy. She leaves behind a grieving tech community that she certainly transformed. Eventually, in her own unique way, she shaped the tech landscape not just in Kenya or East Africa, but also, the world.

Article by Carol Odero,  published in CIO EAST AFRICA, the leading magazine for the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) industry in East Africa, published by Kommunication Ultimate Limited (KUL) in conjunction with the International Data Group (IDG), a world-renowned publisher of legendary brands.

Bain is one of the world’s top management consulting firms. The organization works with leaders across industries and geographies to solve industry-defining challenges in Strategy, Marketing, Organization, Operations, Digital Transformation, Sustainability and M&A. Founded in 1973, Bain has 6,000 employees in 58 offices worldwide. Bain has worked with over 4,900 companies, including more than two-thirds of the Global 500, Private Equity funds representing 75% of global equity capital, leading non-profits and innovative start-ups. Bain’s public clients have outperformed the S&P four to one.

Great boards help companies outperform their peers, delivering value to stakeholders, sustainably, and without compromising compliance or risk. Companies that achieve this are the bedrock of inclusive economic growth. In today’s environment the expectation for companies and the Boards that govern them is high. Ensuring compliance beyond reproach is critical, but it is not enough. Outperforming requires focus and clarity around strategy and culture as well as an ability to adapt and be agile in turbulent times. Based on extensive research, and the insights of prominent global Directors with over 240 years of cumulative experience, Bain & Company has developed an all-encompassing approach to effective governance called ‘The Great Board’.

Software Technologies co-hosted a conversation on the foundations of this approach and to discuss perspectives on what Great Boards do differently to outperform peers and succeed in challenging environments. The conversation brought together members from leading companies across sectors in Kenya for a discussion that went beyond compliance to focus on strategy setting and execution at the board level. The topics discussed were:

  • The changing role of boards in business
  • The board’s role in creating and driving a winning strategy and sustained value creation
  • Cultural traits of high performing boards, why conformity / lack of conflict does not equal agreement and how to create a virtuous cycle of trust and candour

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

©1991-2020 Software Technologies Ltd. All Rights Reserved | Privacy Policy | Terms & Conditions