CPiO is a Strategic Business Partner of Sage UK, specialising in Sage 200, Sage ERP X3, Sage ERP 1000, Sage CRM Software, Qlik and Infor CRM. Browse our news feed for all of the latest information and updates from CPiO.
UK software giant, Sage, has announced that it will be re-branding its flagship ERP solution from 1st October 2019. Sage Enterprise Management will be known as Sage X3, returning to the familiar brand name that it held up until the 18th April, 2018.
After feedback from customers and partners, Sage has identified that the name Sage Business Cloud Enterprise Management didn’t reflect the market or technology segment in which the product serves so well. The name change also allows for companies to no longer have to abbreviate the name to EM.
Sage X3 is a global ERP solution with growing popular demand; the brand name change is expected to cement the product as a leader in the very competitive middle tier of software solutions in the market.
In 1994 Bilston-based laboratory chemical, equipment and consumables supplier Scientific & Chemical Supplies Limited began its successful partnership with CPiO Limited. In 1994 the company purchased hardware from CPiO quickly followed by its financial software, Chameleon 2000 in the year 1996.
CPiO has worked in partnership ever since, supporting Scientific & Chemical’s software and hardware and helping the business through various upgrades to its current Sage ERP and ecommerce solutions. CPiO staff joined several of Scientific & Chemical’s long-serving employees to celebrate the 25 year anniversary in successful partnership.
SciChem staff at 25 year anniversary celebration
Speaking at the event, Philip Palser, Chief Technology Officer at Scientific & Chemical said, “Over these 25 years working with CPiO the business has completed six major ERP and CRM projects plus over twenty other projects and I’m pleased to say all projects went live on time and to budget.”
He continues, “But technology isn’t just about computers, hardware and software. It’s about people. It’s about encouraging people to look at new processes and new ways of working and challenging themselves. It’s about working with people to reduce the risk of failure. At CPiO it’s true to say that it is people who make IT work.
There are many, many Sage partners across the UK, yet we have maintained our relationship with CPiO. This is testament to the knowledge, proficiency and sincerity of everyone at CPiO. From our Account Manager to the Project Managers and support staff, it is always a pleasure to deal with CPiO.”
Andrew Watkinson, Managing Director, Leyla Blakeman, Customer Service Director, and Beverly Bottomley, Account Manager at CPiO joined the celebration.
Toasting the occasion, Andrew echoed Philip’s words, saying, “Although we have supported Scientific & Chemical’s IT systems for a quarter of a century, it has become more than just the support of technology. We strive to understand the business and its needs and work together as a team to deliver a seamless service that enables Scientific & Chemical to focus on the running of their day to day business. We are trusted partners and their success really matters to us.”
Philip Palser and Leyla Blakeman
Leyla concluded by adding, “I signed the original contract with Philip and alongside the business appointments and communications I have developed a genuine friendship; it has been a pleasure working with Philip and all of the staff at Scientific & Chemical over the past 25 years. Here’s to many more years of success for both of our businesses and an ongoing partnership.”
Most recently CPiO has supported Scientific & Chemical Supplies in reaching mandatory compliance for HMRC’s Making Tax Digital (MTD) programme. Speaking of this upgrade Philip explains, “The new directive from HMRC stipulates we must submit our VAT digitally. In order to achieve this we need MTD compliant ERP software. The version of Sage we were running was not compliant and so CPiO assisted us in upgrading to the compatible service pack. As ever the process was well managed without disruption to business.”
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According to a joint report by the Urban Land Institute (ULI) and PwC, Birmingham is the highest ranking UK city for investment prospects.
The findings were published in the 2019 PwC/ULI Emerging Trends in Real Estate Europe report, based on the opinions of over 800 real estate professionals in Europe, including investors, developers, lenders, and advisors.
Across Europe, Birmingham is ranked 24 for investment prospects, moving ahead of Manchester at 25, Edinburgh at 26 and London at 29.
Cities are selected and ranked on a range of investment and development criteria, including transport connectivity, availability of assets, traditional finance measures, economic performance and digital connectivity, and attractions to talent and city leadership.
The report recognised the significant investment being made in infrastructure and connectivity in Birmingham, including HS2, the extension of the Metro, and 5G mobile data pilot scheme, as the city continues to position itself as a prime UK location for investors.
However, the report also recognises that uncertainty surrounding Brexit continues to impact the UK’s regional real estate markets.
Jonathan Clements, director and specialist in real estate tax at PwC said: “When you explore the factors that investors and developers place their confidence in, Birmingham scores highly in all of these. Whilst the UK as a whole is being affected by uncertainty surrounding Brexit, Birmingham is performing strongly and provides a wide range of real estate opportunities.
“Game changers for Birmingham include investment in transport connectivity with HS2 and the Metro, and infrastructure with the 5G test-bed. The attractiveness of the city is also boosted by its leadership, including Mayor Andy Street, and its access to an excellent talent pool of graduates and emerging talent as the number one location outside London for start-ups and scale-ups.
“Our own commitment to our new home, One Chamberlain Square at Paradise, is PwC’s largest single investment outside of London. We employ over 2,200 people across the Midlands and are committed to recruiting local talent, including school leavers, apprentices and graduates.”
More than 60 industry discussed the report’s findings at an event hosted by Adrian Bland, chairman of ULI Midlands and head of commercial real estate at Shakespeare Martineau, Liz Waller, executive director at ULI UK, and Jonathan Clements, director and specialist in real estate tax at PwC, and were joined by a panel of real estate specialists, chaired by Martin Guest, managing director for the Midlands & South at CBRE.
Martin said: “Birmingham is home to some of the largest residential, commercial and infrastructure investments outside of London.
“These include Curzon Street station to house the new HS2 station at the heart of Eastside and promoting wider regeneration, as well as HSBC’s move to Arena Central.
“Whilst large scale projects, such as Birmingham Smithfield, the Curzon Investment Plan and HS2 provide investment opportunities, we are also seeing an active market in the city’s residential property portfolio.
“The residential market remains strong with prices improving and more interest in city centre private rented sector (PRS) schemes as we see further applications for developments, such as Exchange Square. Blackstone’s investment in purchasing the NEC as part of its global investment portfolio also demonstrates the region’s position and attractiveness on the world stage.”
Adrian said: “We are seeing changes in the type of real estate in demand to meet the requirements of our evolving commercial, residential and social environments. There is a growing demand for co-working and flexible working spaces, as well as technology-enabled and learning environments as we see the city become a hub for life science and tech start-ups.
“However, on the high street we are seeing traditional retail space being hard hit by the retail crisis, with the likes of House of Fraser in jeopardy, and city centre real estate being redeveloped into mixed use.
“Continuing to attract investment and foreign capital is vital for Birmingham to maintain the momentum of its success story with the unprecedented opportunities provided by HS2, Metro, Commonwealth Games 2022, the 5G ‘test bed’ and the related infrastructure investment.”
Read the original post on Greater Birmingham Chamber of Commerce news here.
Greater Birmingham’s economy is performing strongly in areas ranging from job creation to quality of life. That’s according to data from the Greater Birmingham & Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership (GBSLEP).
Some 29,452 private sector jobs were created in the GBSLEP area during 2017 – a 3.8 per cent increase, against an average rise of 2.4 per cent for Core City LEPs. As a result, GBSLEP has reached 67 per cent of its target to support the creation of 250,000 private sector jobs by 2030. Job creation has been particularly strong in East Staffordshire and northern Worcestershire. The increase in private sector jobs aligns with a decline in unemployment across Greater Birmingham.
The region’s unemployment rate fell by 0.4 per cent in the third quarter of 2018, to 5.6 per cent – from 10.3 per cent in 2010.
The creation of new jobs is driven by the performance of the local economy, which has demonstrated steady and continued growth of 20 per cent in real terms, between 2010 and 2017.
Greater Birmingham and Solihull is the fastest growing Core City LEP area during this period, significantly higher than the average of 11 per cent for England’s largest city regions.
Greater Birmingham and Solihull has also remained a national hotspot for start-ups, according to new data from the Centre for Entrepreneurs.
Some 18,590 new companies were founded in Birmingham during 2017 – making it the most entrepreneurial UK city outside London. Birmingham recorded a 9.7 per cent rise in its start-ups, compared with a national increase of 4.7 per cent.
Chair of GBSLEP, Tim Pile said: “The local economy across Greater Birmingham and Solihull has continued to build strength and momentum during the past year.
“With the Commonwealth Games, HS2 and 5G all on the horizon, Greater Birmingham is at the forefront of many exciting opportunities that a range of businesses – from innovative SMEs to international brands – want to be a part of.
“We have also seen an increase in start-ups as our home-grown entrepreneurs continue to thrive here.
“Critical to this economic growth has been collaborative working between the private, public and academic sectors across the region.
“Equally important to our achievements has been the joint-working between key agencies and ambitious leaders, committed to driving inclusive growth.
“Joint initiatives such as the creation of a Local Industrial Strategy for the West Midlands are helping to ensure that we identify and embrace the opportunities that will make the greatest difference to the local economy and our sectors of strength.”
The results follow a rise in foreign direct investment, with the area recording a 125 per cent increase in FDI projects in 2017/18, compared with the previous year.
Companies that have recently moved to the region include engineering specialists Bechtel and WSP, along with tech firms Adapttech and Pervacio, and life sciences innovator Dignio.
The strong economic performance of the city region has supported improvements in its quality of life – with Greater Birmingham and Solihull climbing the rankings in PwC’s Good Growth for Cities 2018 index.
The report ranks locations by their economic wellbeing, and considers factors ranging from affordable housing to health, income levels, work/life balance, distribution of wealth and transport systems.
GBSLEP has moved into third place among Core City LEPs up from fourth last year, boosted by falling unemployment, improvements in health outcomes and improved qualifications in the workforce.
Read the original article posted by Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce on 23rd January 2019 here.
As with previous Sage 200cloud Enhancements, the latest release focusses on the three key elements: connected data, customer experience and simplicity. Highlights include:
The Sage partnership with GoCardless, a leading digital Direct Debit provider will give extra functionality in Sage200cloud to help remove the pain of late payment, improve cash flow and have a greater predictability of cash position. Functionality includes:
Scheduling and collecting payments by Direct Debit from within Sage 200cloud.
End customers can be selected to take advantage of GoCardless via the Pay Now functionality.
Setting up Direct Debit from both invoices and directly within product.
Making Tax Digital
The new release will afford in product compliance where previous versions have required assistance from Sage and its business partner network to activate.
Improved Audit Capability
The ability to view important audit activities and capture user actions taken on key data. This will help support internal audit processes and clearly identify:
Changes to supplier bank details.
Changes to purchase requisitions.
Purchase Requisition Enhancements
The new enhancements will save time by improving the purchase requisition customer journey. Details include:
Mandatory Nominal Code/Supplier Account.
Combined Budget Selection.
Order of Budget in Combined Budget Lookup in alphabetical order.
Restrict access to Authorise/Authorise & Generate Orders Options.
Cancel Purchase Request when cancelling/removing Purchase Order.
Amend a rejected Purchase Request.
Authoriser to amend Purchase Request.
Microsoft PowerApps Connectivity
PowerApps is a service for building and using custom business apps that connect to your data and work across the web and mobile, without the need for custom development. The Sage 200cloud Winter 2018 enhancement will integrate with Microsoft PowerApps.
Microsoft Flow Connectivity
Microsoft Flow allows users to create and automate workflows and tasks across multiple applications and services. It automates everything from simple push notifications and content management to complex business processes with defined steps and stages.
Warehouse on Free Text Items
Non-stock holding businesses often use Warehouses to represent departments or locations within their business. This feature will enable organisations to use this information for purchases via free text items.
New figures released today from StartUp Britain and Centre for Entrepreneurs show that Birmingham is once again the number one city outside of London for start-ups.
In 2018, 18,590 start-up firms formed in the city last year, a rise of 9.68 per cent after accounting for distortions.
The city performed well above the national average, which recorded an increase of 4.65 per cent.
It is the sixth year that the city has outperformed other regional cities for the number of start-ups formed.
However, London still outperforms the region, with 216,204 start-ups formed in 2018, up 5.8 per cent.
Saqib Bhatti, Greater Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership (GBSLEP) director for growing businesses and representing SMEs, and president of Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce said: “Greater Birmingham provides the ideal environment for entrepreneurs to thrive. Beyond our infrastructure and talent pool, the city and its surrounding areas also have a deep-rooted culture of innovation, creativity and ambition.
“With one of the UK’s youngest and most diverse populations, we can only fulfil the city’s full economic potential if our support for start-ups is as inclusive as possible.
“The GBSLEP and its Growth Hub recently supported a scheme to provide entrepreneurs in the most deprived parts of the region with tailored advice, which has helped more than 200 small businesses to date.”
Delta Impact (part of the Rebound Technology Group), based in Newbury Berkshire has further developed its long term partnership with Sage UK strategic partner CPiO by working together to implement its new Sage Business Cloud: Enterprise Management software.
A manufacturing solutions provider, Delta has over 30 years’ experience in the industry. Due to demand in recent years, Delta has increased the amount of outsource manufacturing. The business has seen rapid expansion and six months into the year it has already exceeded is predicted turnover for 2018.
It became clear that Sage 1000 couldn’t manage the changing needs of the business. Julian Smith, Documentation and Business Systems Manager explains, “The business is a different shape from when we implemented Sage 1000 ten years ago and we tried to find work arounds to handle the manufacturing side”.
Delta considered upgrading its Sage 1000 system. However, having discussed the upgrade with CPiO, it decided that instead of configuring the system to meet the changing business needs, long-term it would be better to transition to Sage’s Enterprise Management software. Julian explains, “We have an established relationship with CPiO who have supported our Sage system for many years, it was clear that the team wanted to really help us maximise our business prospects and its ongoing operations”.
Sage’s Enterprise Management software will allow Delta to control all its core business processes, including sub-contract manufacturing as it has a fully integrated MRP module. Being able to effectively manage the company’s global operations and suppliers from one platform has become pivotal as the company now has premises in the UK and Asia. “Enterprise Management is much closer to what we need in the business. It has so much functionality that’s already there and out of the box that just needs to be configured. We’ll get to where we want to be more quickly with Enterprise Management”, explained Julian.
Having built up a global supplier network, one of Delta’s USPs is its buying power and the size and range of the parts it stocks. The Sage Inventory Advisor (SIA) module will aid its planning and purchasing, managing stock levels and reducing working capital. “We can clearly see options where we can potentially shave as much as a quarter off the value of the stock and continue to meet our customer’s needs.”
Since working with CPiO on the Enterprise Management project, the team at Delta has valued the expertise of its consultants. “The global finance team has been blown away by the particular knowledge of one of CPiO’s consultants. It’s the first time the team has worked with anyone from an IT company who has actually worked in a finance office and can talk to them in their language about day to day problems and accounts activity. They ask a question and get a direct answer straight back.”
The electronics industry moves at a very fast pace and Delta is confident that Enterprise Management will support its global operation and realise a quick return on its investment. Julian concludes, “We’ll be able to hire people to meet business demands rather than hiring for system support operators.”
Evolve Azure Services is a young, dynamic technology company, providing services that help businesses manage IT using Microsoft’s Azure cloud platform. As a Microsoft Gold Partner, it specialises in migrating, building and maintaining IT systems in Microsoft Azure in order to reduce costs and improve IT efficiency for its customers.
Recently appointed as Financial Controller, Jack Hazell was tasked with implementing a more robust financial system that would support the business as it grows. “We are predominantly using Excel and various web based tools to create timesheets, generate invoices, manage our accounts and run management information reporting. This involves having to manually enter data onto various places, resulting in a significant amount of effort and duplication.”
Given the pace at which the business is growing the current approach is becoming increasingly unsustainable and it is having an overall negative effect on the finance function, who at the beginning of every month spend several days generating invoices, and consolidating accounts. Jack continues: “Because none of the tools speak to each other, it takes a long time to pull everything together, taking up valuable time that could be spent elsewhere.”
With Jack’s appointment, Evolve Azure Services was able to assign a dedicated individual to manage a project to investigate and select an alternative solution. This included carefully considering the company’s requirements, selecting an appropriate solution and driving the project to deliver and prioritise requirements accordingly.
After examining various solutions including Xero and Microsoft Dynamics 365, Jack recommended to his board Sage 200cloud, as he felt it was robust and had the power and flexibility to keep up with the growth plans of the company. “Sage 200cloud is an industrial strength tool, it is simple to use and we are really excited to see how it can work for our business” comments Jack. “We didn’t just want an out of the box solution, we know with Sage 200cloud we will be gaining a platform to build on, all built and stored in our hosted environment in Microsoft Azure that we can manage.”
The Evolve Azure Services board endorsed Jack’s recommendation and is now not only looking forward to working with Sage 200cloud but also using third party add-ons such as Sicon WAP for timesheets, staff holiday management and Sicon Job Costing to improve the management of project cycles for both its employees and contractors. Sage 200cloud also gives the company the opportunity to explore the integrated Business Intelligence and CRM functionality further down the line and understand how it can maximise time in all areas of the business, alongside finance.
An important decision for Evolve Azure Services, it was not only a matter of selecting the right product but also selecting the right partner to support them. Based in Birmingham and not far from Evolve Azure Services offices in Coventry, CPiO was selected to assist with the implementation. Evolve Azure Services appreciated CPiO’s consultancy led approach and frequent, informative communication at every stage of the process. “CPiO is a well-established company and we felt they had the right expertise and knowledge of the Sage product to support us.”
Jack was also impressed with CPiO’s professionalism and great work ethic: “CPiO put our needs and requirements at the forefront and worked with us to produce a solution that is right for our business and will be cost effective in the long run. This was a really refreshing approach. We appreciated that CPiO wanted to help us, rather than sell us something that simply wouldn’t fit.”
With Sage 200cloud, Evolve Azure Services gains a powerful management tool to transform its financial processes, improving overall efficiency and driving the company’s growth plans.