Interview

“Partner Ecosystem is the Pillar of Strength for Us.”

Please throw some light on the role of office automation for the SME segment in a Post COVID world.

The new normal has led to a tectonic shift towards automation and digitization across industries. Greater adoption of digital or online communication, cloud storage and collaboration services have emerged as essential technology needs. With an increased focus towards resource optimization and automation, businesses started pushing for operational efficiency, cost reduction, improved turnaround time and better serviceability; and SMEs are no different to pick up this trend.

With hybrid working, the need of the hour is to streamline workflows and access documents on the go as working from home presents different challenges than office working. Digitization and Document Management solutions can manage routine communication, data entry and maintenance, documentation, and so on.

Thus, we foresee a positive demand for office automation solutions in the coming times, where data accessibility and security will be key aspects to be considered. Canon’s business solutions are well equipped to help SME’s in achieving the desired objectives effectively.

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“At the end of the day, our partner ecosystem is extremely critical to us as unless our partners grow, we cannot grow. It is thus important to support them, especially in these difficult times.”

K Bhaskhar,
Senior VP
Canon India

 

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Can you elaborate on the role of MFD’s to improve work ecosystem amidst the emerging economic crisis?

The coronavirus pandemic weakened many sectors of the Indian economy, however now the economy has started showing signs of recovery. In such a scenario, office automation solutions can help in increasing the return on investment and achieving benefits such as better compliance, cost optimizations and scalability.

“Do More with Less” is the key requirement for the SME segment. Accordingly, Digitization, Streamlined Workflows, Print and Document Management is all possible with Multi-function Devices (MFDs). Today, there are advanced MFD models available in the market that are a perfect confluence of hardware and software and can help SMEs with all their key asks.

MFPs are playing an important role in the modern workplace. Please share your thoughts on the expanding footprint in the SMEs with the help of MFPs.

SMEs are the backbone of India’s economy in terms of the value addition they provide in areas of employment, technological advancement and industrial output to name a few. An SME ecosystem involves multiple stakeholders, right from internal members to vendors, suppliers, customers, channel partners, banks etc. To manage all this effectively, SMEs need their workforce and their established processes to work in perfect harmony. The shift to digitization or the adoption of office automation is of utmost importance to optimize operations and make the best use of limited resources. Here, Multi-Functional Printers (MFPs) are the answer to the current evolving needs of SMEs in India.

The A4 MFP segment is particularly appealing for SME’s as they are compact in size and offer more features at a less investment. Therefore, we foresee a huge surge in this segment to meet this demand.

What are some of Canon India’s offerings through their product range that can help SMEs improve their workflow?

At Canon, we believe that ‘Business Can Be Simple’ and it is our constant endeavour to support our customers with the best-in-class products and solutions. With each new series that we launch, we aim to keep our customers’ needs in mind and bring out products that bring ease to their business operations. Keeping in mind the diverse needs of the SME segment, we have a perfect range of products to cater to all their needs. Let us look at our flagship “imageRUNNER” series of MFPs which has models ranging from 20 PPM going up-to 80PPM, however as 90% of the printing happens on A4 sheets, the A4 models in this series are best suited for SMEs – as they offer more for less. These models are designed for smooth functionality, high reliability and ease of operation as machines on the same network are connected. Many models in the imageRUNNER series also come equipped with “Uniflow Online Express” software which allows organizations to track and monitor their printing, thereby enabling them to optimize costs.

Apart from this, with majority of businesses shifting their focus to hybrid working wherein document access becomes crucial, we have state-of-the-art cloud solutions on a leading cloud provider platform, which ensures secure and seamless management of information. “Therefore™” solutions efficiently allow users to capture, secure, manage, access, analyse and automate information even when on the move. “Kofax Power PDF” is another product in demand as it allows easy editing of PDF files, forms and allows users to collaborate on PDF’s. We have also designed special packages of our Solution offerings, that are particularly suited for SMEs.

What is the opportunity that Canon provides for its partners?

After technological innovation and our diverse product portfolio, the most important pillar for our success is our partner ecosystem as they are the pillar of strength for us. They have contributed a lot towards the growth of Canon India, particularly for our B2B division. So, it is very important that we constantly support them, especially during this tough period. We have organized Webinars for our partners on how Document Management and Cloud based Solutions can be beneficial for their business as well as for their customers. Trainings have been organized for our partners and their sales teams to up their skills in selling Solutions, and how to effectively use Digital marketing for their business. Moreover, we have enabled our partners to offer No Cost EMI facility to their end customers.

As many SMEs prefer to get a demo of the product before they purchase, we have opened Business Imaging Solutions Lounges in association with our partners wherein customers can experience all Canon Office Automation products as well as evaluate the best model that suits their business. We currently have 15 BIS Lounges across the country.

At the end of the day, our partner ecosystem is extremely critical to us as unless our partners grow, we cannot grow. It is thus important to support them, especially in these difficult times.

What are some of the new models that Canon India is bringing out to adapt to the hybrid workplace?

One of the key requirements of a hybrid workplace is secure and easy access to documents. We are seeing an increase in demand for our Document Scanner range and our Cloud-based Solutions like “Therefore Online”. Another Solution that we are seeing a demand for is “Kofax Power PDF” – that makes editing and collaborating on PDF documents easy for users. We plan to bring more Document Management solutions in the Indian market particularly suited for SMEs. Our recently launched range of MFDs – the imageRUNNER 1643i – is a compact A4 MFD with low hardware and low cost per print, and is perfectly suited for SMEs. New compact MFD models are in the pipeline, to be launched later in the year. We also provide Customized Solutions, and customers they can easily contact us through our Website or contact our authorized partners for demos.

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