Tian van der Walt is a consultant in the cost transparency team at Keyrus in South Africa. It is his responsibility to produce the cost models of various clients and to deliver quality implementations to these clients.
“As for what I do, with a growing number of clients seeking cost transparency solutions, I see my role as being akin to that of a guide, assisting the clients in finding the answers they seek. My most critical function is asking the right questions, in order to help the client find the right path. It is crucial to ask the kind of questions that evoke exploration and insights for the client concerning costs and cost drivers,” he says.
“Once the client has decided to implement a cost transparency tool, my role is to make sure that they obtain genuine value from the solution implemented, and that it delivers as promised. This means ensuring that it is presenting information in the correct way, in order to ensure that client can make informed decisions,” he says.
One of the key tools that Keyrus uses in delivering cost transparency is MagicOrange. MagicOrange does more than enable CIOs and IT manager to simply defend the true cost of IT. MagicOrange Cost Transparency, he explains, is designed to enable clients to implement practices which drive the participation, behaviour change, and accountability that they desire throughout the organisation."
“Prior to joining Keyrus I worked at one of the top four audit firms for two years, where I was involved in working closely with a number of enterprise clients in banking, insurance, telecoms, and mining - a valuable experience underpinned by my honours in Management Accounting (CIMA) and my on-going pursuit of CIMA qualification.”
Asked what led to him to join Keyrus, he indicates that he became interested in cost transparency purely due to his love of data. With the use of tools such as MagicOrange, he explains, it is possible to present and configure data in a way that he hasn't experienced before.
“On the whole, cost transparency helps with communication and negotiation with internal customers. It ensures that they will have a better overview of the products and services they consume, and how these costs are driven.”
“Once you can cost a product or service accurately, this then allows you to see how products or services are consumed. This is vital, as business needs to be in touch with its costs – no truly effective decisions can be made without having cost transparency first.”
He points out that it is his current understanding of the tools and technologies involved in his line of work that prompts him to suggest that if he were able to give some advice to his younger self, he would encourage spending more time in researching technology, as well as taking IT as a subject at school. Technology is where the world is moving, continues van der Walt, and there is still only a relatively small population of people with a combination of decent IT and finance background.
“In the end, you need to have the right skills to be able see how IT can improve your business and how that will affect your financial decisions. Coupled with this, you need an effective tool, and MagicOrange is one of the key tools that we use to provide effective and affordable cost transparency solutions. Our consultants make sure that they address the needs of the various stakeholders at our clients, and ensure that we build on the relationships with them.”
“Moreover, our time to market is much shorter than our competitors. We follow an agile, streamlined implementation methodology, and the solutions we deliver are designed to be easy to implement. Our training also stands out, including hands-on, face-to-face training to enable our clients to utilise the solution delivered and to benefit from it as much as is possible. And, of course, we also provide regular updates to the solutions implemented, thereby ensuring that any new functionalities get rolled out to clients rapidly, in order to assist them in making a difference to their key costs,” he concludes.