Technology Adoption Opens the Door to New Business OpportunitiesBy MBN Staff | Tue, 01/01/2019 - 16:40
As Mexico adopts more IT, data-processing and industrial software, new opportunities are opening for industrial software companies to grow in automotive-intensive areas like Guanajuato, according to Robert Hart, Vice President of SVAM International de México. “After a decade of supporting manufacturing customers in Mexico’s border areas with the US from our site in Ciudad Victoria, we are opening a new location in Guanajuato,” says Hart.
The company’s new sales office in Silao will target the region’s automotive manufacturing operations with its custom-made software solutions. In Mexico, SVAM International focuses on designing, engineering and developing software solutions, including custom and mobile applications. It also provides staffing solutions oriented to helping clients find the appropriate talent for their IT and software departments.
Yesica Heredia, Director General of SVAM International de México, says the company’s staffing solutions go beyond providing people who can offer advice or develop software pieces for automotive companies. “Our engineers are aware of the industry’s software requirements. They can support clients in areas or processes that can be improved through software and raise awareness regarding the latest technologies available,” she says. Rather than just recruiting people to be hired by their clients, SVAM International supplies IT specialists under a scheme in which engineers remain employed by the company but support maquila operations under the direction of the client.
SVAM International is headquartered in the US but it also has software development centers in Mexico and India. The company mixes the competitive advantages that Mexican talent offers with the support of its New Delhi offices to offer quality consulting and staffing solutions and to deliver the software packages its clients in Mexico need. Still, the company sees a way to go to improve the quality of the national talent. “It is possible to hire remarkable Mexican software engineers,” says Hart. “But for Mexico to develop the kind of engineers found in India or the US, the country must offer academic courses that focus on the latest software-development technologies.”
In the next five years, the company plans to grow by marketing the finished and proven products it already has, focusing particularly on the automotive sector and on the potential clients the company is targeting in Silao. SVAM International’s goal is to become a Tier 1 software supplier for its customers while keeping Industry 4.0 growth in sight. “SVAM International looks for development projects that have depth in Industry 4.0,” says Hart. “Our ideal client is a company that is committed to implementing a new manufacturing system to improve its future results.” There have been cases where the company delivers a software package to customers and they do not use it, which prevents SVAM International from improving its software for the company and future clients. To prevent this, SVAM International trains its customers to use the software and places experts onsite for several weeks to answer any question that might arise.
Hart underlines that Mexican players stand out for their commitment to SVAM International’s systems, although they are somewhat slow to introduce new technologies because of the expenses related to adoption. Resistance to change is the biggest challenge SVAM faces as it works to boost the implementation of its technology. “Besides introducing new processes, a company must also bolster the capability of its employees to work with this technology,” he says. New technology adoption can also entail payroll cuts but companies must learn to work with that. “The 4.0 revolution is the next step for the industry. Workforce reductions are processes that manufacturing companies have faced over the last 100 years as technologies changed,” Hart says.