Emalangeni Technology works closely with brands like Dell Technologies in delivering the hardware and connectivity needs in government schools and libraries throughout South Africa, to digitally enable future generations.
In the current economy, the customer has never been more important, and companies that go the extra mile to service their clients and ensure their happiness are the ones that will be successful in the long term.
According to Sfiso Magonyane, CEO of Emalangeni Technology, companies — especially those in the SME space — need to offer more to customers than simply selling them products; they also need to be the drivers of change that is tangible and visible to the customer.
“For us, this means being open and prepared to share information with the client, making sure they know what to expect from an implementation. And this sharing of information and ideas must be two-way: We love talking with and learning from customers in this manner, too. The more we know about their business, the more easily we can deliver the best quality support and advice,” he says.
Magonyane points out that Emalangeni, which was launched in 2012, has learnt through this approach that a successful business is one that is open and prepared to learn from others.
“When I launched Emalangeni Technology, it began life as a Web and graphic design company, before we moved more into the technology side of things. Today, we focus on the provision of connectivity, as well as server supply, installation and support.”
He adds that until 2016, the company was mostly focused on the private sector, but he soon realised that the need to service the public sector could help initiate significant growth of the business. To this end, the business became an Icasa-aligned institution, enabling it to move into the government arena with the provision of connectivity, voice-over-IP services, software development and Dell servers.
“Our business is reflective of the changing demographics of the country, with some 80% of our team being young black individuals who have the enthusiasm of youth and the willingness that comes with this to take more risks in order to achieve success.”
The one thing that stands out is the ability of the company’s people to talk to customers in-depth and truly understand their challenges. It is not just about selling product, it’s about “selling a solution”, he says.
It is about ensuring the company can help them effectively as well as solving problems and even pre-empting them. This has become more imperative than ever with the arrival of artificial intelligence, the Internet of things and blockchain technology, he says, suggesting that for customers, having a partner like Emalangeni and excellent technologies from Dell, helps them easily stay on top of things, especially considering how rapidly the technology environment is changing.
Asked about the impact of the lockdown on the business, Magonyane explains that some aspects of the business suffered, while others — like connectivity provision — really took off.
“Remember that everyone found they needed to undertake online meetings and remote working — making effective connectivity crucial to achieve this. The other area of our business that did surprisingly well was our provision of servers. When lockdown began, we had clients who required new servers and infrastructure for their business.
“Dell Enterprise solutions offerings ensured our clients received the servers needed, and in so doing, cemented the strength of our partnership with them. Add to this the high levels of support and training that Dell provides our people, and I only see this partnership growing in strength as we move forward.”
Magonyane adds that the work the company does with schools and libraries in Mpumalanga, which includes not only connectivity and digital migrations but, more crucially, hardware in the form of desktops, laptops and servers, has been as successful as it has been because the company has the support and supply of Dell Technologies products locally.
“As someone not of the born-free generation, when I went to university, it was the first time I used a PC. This was frustrating to begin with, but also very exciting, and my dream is to assist the next generation to experience this same excitement, while also assisting them to access the Internet easily, along with new ways of learning that come with this.
“Emalangeni Technology is a growing business, with over 30 permanent employees and a newly launched branch in KwaZulu-Natal. We are excited about the digital transformation of South African businesses and are committed to providing the Dell solutions and hardware offerings required by schools and many other public facilities across the country. In this way, we will be able to play our part in giving future generations the tools needed to successfully participate in the digital economy,” he says.
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