Date: 2 Mar, 2021
The Future of Technology & OpsVeda
A conversation between Puneet Suppal, VP Marketing, & Gary Primeau, Member of the Advisory Board, OpsVeda, Inc.
For people and businesses alike, 2020 was a year to critically examine the routines and processes in our lives and at work. I am optimistic that 2021 could be a year of new beginnings, new ideas, and exciting changes. Recently, I got to catch up with some of OpsVeda’s advisors. We had great conversations about OpsVeda’s growing role in making a difference to enterprise operations and particularly in the supply chain arena. Our conversations spanned topics like the future of technology, and challenges ahead. In this post, Part 1 in a short series, I share a conversation with Gary Primeau a long-term member of the Advisory Board at OpsVeda.
Gary is a technology industry veteran who has worked all around the world. He started his career as a programmer analyst and worked his way through many roles. He made the transition to SAP about 17 years ago selling software to large enterprises. That’s when he first heard about OpsVeda.
Puneet: When Sanjiv asked you to join as an advisor, what was your first impression of OpsVeda? What were your first thoughts about what Sanjiv wanted to bring to market?
Gary: I was impressed with the product. My background was in selling enterprise software. Customers paid millions of dollars upfront for the software and then they spent a year installing it and making it run for their business for two years or more. I was very impressed with software as a service. I liked that it was integrated into SAP at the time, so that within a few weeks, you could actually start showing all the information OpsVeda could provide in the operations space—from manufacturing to sourcing to shipping and the entire supply chain journey. And I am glad that OpsVeda continues to provide that value to customers.
Puneet: You’ve obviously spent many years in the tech business. What are your thoughts on where technology is headed and how OpsVeda can play a part in all of this? Would you say that for many struggling to make quantum leaps in their digital transformation journeys, OpsVeda can prove to be that bridge to the future?
Gary: The biggest thing that’s happening is that the technology cycle from having an idea to delivering on fulfillment is much faster and cheaper than ever before. Everything is accelerated. It’s a very short span of time from the moment you start something to the moment you start delivering benefits to the customer. At a minimum, I know OpsVeda can give customers value that they can see in 3-5 weeks.
This is especially true for today’s supply chains. As I’m observing with the vaccine rollout, supply chains are extremely important, and logistics is important. It’s not as glamorous as other areas like sales. It’s an area that doesn’t get as much attention. It doesn’t have as much competition, unless you’re talking about companies like SAP or Oracle or big enterprise solutions. But medium to small businesses in industries — like apparel or footwear — have very, very small margins. At the same time, they are complex operations because they source all over the world. And for any retail sales, it’s very low margin. These businesses need to be able to get a software solution up and running quickly, have it prove itself, and have it pay for itself. OpsVeda scores very well in these abilities. So, yes, I’d agree that OpsVeda can be that bridge to the future for many companies – big and small.
Puneet: Yes, I agree, even for companies that would typically shop with an SAP or Oracle first, OpsVeda is very relevant. Someone in their life cycle may be at a place today where they cannot take advantage of everything that a large software vendor says they can because they’d have to upgrade and jump through several hoops before they can get the value they seek. That’s where OpsVeda comes in, I believe.
Gary: Yes, of course. It’s one of OpsVeda’s strongest selling points. Obviously, you’ve got to have fundamental software. But for the operations executive to solve this problem, they have to go to IT. When he does, IT is going to say, “Yes, just put your name on the calendar and we’ll get to it. We’ve got two years of work we’ve got to do with ERP. We’ve got to have this other project rolled out. We’ve got to get budget approvals. If you want something done, you’ve got to get something else knocked out first.” Working with business executives can get around that problem. I mean, that’s the story of so many software companies you might know of. They went directly to the VP of HR or Operations, or the sales exec who ran the company - people that can solve the problem quickly and easily without going to IT and saying, “I’ve got to get on your list.” Since OpsVeda has such a strong appeal for business and operations executives, that’s a really powerful thing for OpsVeda.
Puneet: Despite all the powerful benefits that OpsVeda can usher in for supply chain and operations teams, what do you think are some major challenges for OpsVeda?
Gary: What we found, especially in the industries OpsVeda is strongest in, companies often go through acquisitions and end up with a lot of different software solutions. OpsVeda’s ability to integrate with all of that and bring all that data together is really powerful, but these companies are often constrained from a resources point of view. That’s one of the toughest things OpsVeda - and all software companies - must deal with. Another challenge is getting many more customers in industries that may have never used software like this before, exposed to OpsVeda. For example, in recruiting.
Puneet: Do you think the pandemic has had an impact in this matter?
Gary: Yes, that’s true some things have become more difficult, but I understand the pandemic has not slowed the trajectory of OpsVeda. Look, in the end I believe in OpsVeda. I believe in the company because of the people. You can write software and change it anyway you want, but you’ve got to have the right people. Speaking with you and knowing how Sanjiv has guided the company, I am convinced that OpsVeda’s growth is not going to be impeded by this pandemic.
Puneet: Gary, thank you for your encouraging words. I thank you for your time and look forward to many more chats – hopefully, in person soon.