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And now, a complete ERP solution for OOH

By Bhawana Anand - February 04, 2014

A new ERP solution Edge1 has been launched by US Technosoft which reportedly makes work more efficient, transparent and speedy. Outdoor Asia probes into the details.

US Technosoft, an IT company in the business of creating management based solutions, has forayed into OOH industry by developing an ERP software called Edge1 meant for media owners and agencies. The initiative was driven by demand from media owners looking to have a system in place. The end-to-end solution software took two years to be completed after continuous development and careful refinements. Edge1 essentially integrates and streamlines all the business processes starting from media buying, planning, landlord management and license fee to marketing, sales, lead generation, purchase orders, accounts, reports, alerts, mailing (internal and external) and much more.

The specialized system covers the complete OOH process gamut, right from the preparing of outdoor plans through PPT, sharing of the Geological locations of sites with clients/agencies, finalizing sales invoices along with debit notes, credit notes and an exhaustive set of management reports, all of which can be easily automated with the help of Edge1. It provides the ability to monitor the task 24x7x365 days anywhere, any time.

Upinder Singh, Project Director, Edge1 said talking about it, "We understand that in order for our software to help the business, it needs to be integrated with the existing system. For this reason, it was important to us that we develop a software that could be integrated easily and seamlessly with the tasks already under way and which provided our customers with a 'Best of Breed' solution. They will not have to struggle with complicated installation and implementation processes, or worry about our software not being compatible or scalable as this is currently being used by many outdoor vendors and agencies. They can rest assured that they can begin organizing and completing their tasks more efficiently than ever before.”

Edge1 is basically a role-based software which allows everyone in an organization to perform their jobs. By feeding their Id and password, the respective employees will be able to understand their pre-configured role, privileges and permissions to perform their tasks. For instance, the sales department can make plans, take bookings, plan FOCs, blocking etc, through Edge1. Additionally, the company also develops customized features based on the needs of the company. 

The primary advantage of the software is that it takes away repetitions and errors and saves on time. The whole process and details can be seen by teams in multiple locations since the application provides for multiple users and it can be divided into various branches, roles and levels. The software reduces the intervention of different people and executes things in a much faster and productive way. According to Upinder, complete security has been taken care of as there is no leakage and nobody can get into the systems.

The company provides turnkey solutions besides software training to its client companies and going ahead, plans to offer IT processes for the OOH industry, which are on par with international standards. "We are planning innovations through IT for the OOH industry. We want to take the process on to international levels. We are doing R&D in international standards to know their work processes. We have even got enquires from a lot of different companies for the service,” sums ups Upinder. 
Well the going wasn't easy for Technosoft with the main challenge being in the implementation part. "The arena of big outdoor companies is not organized. People have taken control of certain domains and they have created a kind of dependency, so therefore breaking that kind of dependency on people was the biggest challenge for us,” shares Upinder.

Convincing industry players too was a mammoth task. As Upinder explains, "People knew that the software is going to benefit them but they were not willing to adopt it which was the biggest hurdle. I believe the people in the outdoor industry are not ready to adopt this kind of software as they don't want to bring in transparency due to personal reasons. There are very few people in the industry who think that things should be simplified.”

Well, the efforts seem to have paid off as industry players are slowly and gradually coming around to accepting the solution and the feedback from some of them obviously shows that the purpose is being served. Says Shavinder Singh Sandu, CEO, Lead Ads, "We have signed up with Edge 1 for their services / software and their team came to Ludhiana to put up all my database, inventory list, and client details in the software. Looking at their demo, we were fully pleased and immediately registered with them as it has a complete solution to all our needs. Yes, we did ask them for few customizations and they did incorporate the same in the software. They have almost everything that one could think of in terms of software for outdoor advertising needs.”

Agrees Sujal Shah, MD, Sujal Advertisers, "We have been using Edge1 software for the past 6 months. The software is really excellent. It saves lot of manpower and made our employees more efficient. We didn't ask for any personalized application but we would definitely like to update it with advanced features in future.”

Sunjjoy Daaddicch, MD - Explomedia, another user of the software, explains it further,  "This software has captured the right spirit of the industry by telling the details of each inventory with image, its occupancy date and details. It provides connectivity and transparency by updating us about our transactions, pending POs, pictures and cheques. The software is also easy to operate.”

Well hope that with more such solutions in place and with more players using them, a lot of the glitches in the industry can be sorted out and the way can be paved for the industry's growth with greater client confidence and willingness to invest in the medium. 


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