Epos Now expands into the Australian market
Headquartered in Norwich, UK, Epos Now (EN) also has offices in the US and currently serves over 30,000 clients in the retail and hospitality sectors. Epos Systems (ES) is an Australian native company which has been collaborating with Epos Now for several years.
The partnership will expand EN’s range into the APAC region, enabling the company to offer its services to potentially thousands more clients.
Jacyn Heavens, CEO, Epos Now, commented, “We have been working with Epos Systems in Australia for a few years and have been incredibly impressed with the knowledge and skills of the people within the business.”
“Our values and ethos are extremely well aligned; the team has an in-depth understanding of our product and the market having created exceptional demand in the region for the Epos Now platform.”
Pushing for excellence in customer service
Specialising in providing software designed to enhance reporting, stock control and CRM (customer relationship management), EN’s augmented global team are hoping to continue the high standard of customer service that has enabled the brand’s success so far.
“Customer success is hugely dependent on our domain knowledge and the expertise we can offer, which is why this acquisition is so important to us. By encouraging peer-to-peer learning across teams, we will further augment the service we provide,” Heavens stated.
“Moreover, the acquisition hugely adds velocity to Epos Now’s IPO ambitions and provides us with the increased resources to heavily invest in our platform, partnerships, staff and customers.”
Describing the partnership as a logical and mutually-beneficial arrangement, Nick Chadwick, Director of ES, said that joining EN would allow both parties to grow.
“Our team here carry fantastic skills and the career possibilities offered within a rapidly growing organisation like Epos Now are fantastic. The ease of deployment and stability of the product, coupled with the ability to offer localised support, grants our clients both here in Australia and overseas a virtually unparalleled offering.”
The acquisition means that EN will now have offices capable of supporting clients across all time zones in 109 countries. “With this acquisition,” Heavens concluded, “We truly are a global business.”
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Q&A: Professor Loredana Padurean, Asia School of Business
As someone who is creating Asia Pacific’s business leaders of the future, what do you believe are the essential skills leaders require?
In many ways, we need leaders who are Renaissance women/men or polymaths, as opposed to specialists of an industry or a field. A polymath is a person with profound knowledge, proficiency and expertise in multiple fields and today’s leaders have to be able to combine various ideas, look at problems in novel and useful ways, and develop a broad and yet still deep set of skills, talents, and knowledge.
You’ve coined ‘smart’ and ‘sharp’ as skills of the future. What are these?
They are replacements for ‘soft’ and ‘hard’ skills, a concept coined by a US Army doctor in 1972 who observed that his pupils had different skills: dealing with machinery required ‘hard’ skills, while dealing with people and paper were ‘soft’ skills. This concept has served us well since, but I find it too binary, not to mention the semantic implications of the words themselves.
Soft implies gentle, delicate, mild, quiet, tender, weak. However, there is nothing soft in navigating competing perspectives and cultures, handling and delivering critical feedback or dealing with office politics. Instead, I prefer to call these skills ‘smart’. Hard implies rigid, difficult, heavy, static. But how can we think of engineering or software development as static or rigid? I believe ‘sharp’ is more apt as such skills need constant updating or sharpening.
I think it’s time to reflect on these classifications, because we can drastically change someone’s perspective by how we choose to talk about and frame something.
How important are smart skills in leadership today?
Smart skills are more important than ever because we live in a world of extreme diversity: generational, ethical, value-based, gender, etc. Gone are the days when giving an order was an effective act of leadership. I personally work with people from five different continents and across five different generations, therefore as leaders, we need to know how to adapt, motivate, inspire and connect. We need to increase our investment in learning about them in action, especially as smart skills are more difficult to develop.
I believe that a successful leader today has to be both smart and sharp. Take cognitive readiness, one of my top 10 smart skills. In order to be cognitive ready, one has to master system dynamics, one of my top 10 sharp skills. Also, did you know that one of the primary reasons why digital transformation fails is not the absence of digital literacy, a sharp skill, but the need for more validation and adaptability, both smart skills. So, instead of thinking of these skills as binary, I prefer to think of them as the yin and yang; co-existing and complementing each other.
So, you can teach leaders smart skills then?
Yes, you can, via a combination of the classroom experience, plus an action component supported by deeply embedded reflection. At ASB we call this Action Learning, and we teach it both in the MBA and in the executive programs. For example, in teaching a leader emotional maturity as a smart skill, first they need to learn what it is, and then act on it, before reflecting on what we did and how we did it. And then to repeat it, but this time with more expertise and awareness. It’s not easy, but that’s why my favourite mantra is ‘the job is easy, the people are not’.
Discover Professor Padurean's successful skills for a digital transformation here