Safaricom Business has launched online solutions that will enable SMEs to access affordable high-end software hence transforming the way they manage business.
Safaricom’s solution is set to directly compete with Google’s Kenyan Businesses Online (KBO) which was launched in late 20111. It gives users a free kbo.co.ke web address while a customizable domain – for instance mybusiness.co.ke – is charged at Kshs 3,000 annually.
Safaricom’s online solutions will allow SMEs access to a Website, professional email, HR Payroll software and accounting software with each user being billed according to the specific needs of the business. Users will also be able to access the services wherever they are through the internet hence affording them flexibility in managing data.
It has various features. The accounting software; Sage Pastel, will allow SMEs to generate professional financial reports which they can use to borrow loans from financial institutions. The payroll solution; Cleanbill, is designed to ease and professionalise payroll management by automatically tabulate all statutory deductions from the employees and keeping relevant records.
To access the new service, businesses will pay a monthly fee of Kshs 870 for the on-line payroll processing software, Kshs.1, 740 for the accounting software and Kshs 1, 750 for professional email. Website hosting will cost Kshs 999 for a full year’s subscription.
Sylvia Mulinge, Safaricom’s Business General Manager says that the new offer will make it easier and affordable for SMEs to professionalize data management. She highlighted that the new proposition offers businesses the option of choosing the specific suite of services they require based on the individual needs.
“Software as a service is a solution that will provide SMEs with an affordable, safe and secure method of storing and managing their data. Presently, many SMEs find the cost of data management such as the purchase of genuine software and servers as well as the hire of professionals prohibitive,” she said.