2021 was a special year for Ultimate Software, as it was for most companies. Contrary to the first expectations, Corona turned out to have a lasting impact on society. This required the necessary flexibility and innovativeness. Compliments to the whole team!
But there is more than Corona, in 2021 Ultimate Software has decided to continue under the name Ultimate Maritime Logistics. What process preceded this and what does this mean for the company’s core values ? Arne Deenekamp, CEO of UML, explains why they made this choice.
Over the past year, Ultimate Software (US) has taken the time to think about the (re)positioning of the company. How distinguish US itself from other providers? This was not an easy task, since US is in a complex industry. The name 'Ultimate Software' was also mentioned and it turned out to be too general. Moreover, there is a software company in the United states of America with the same name and even a similar font, which caused confusion among the (potential) customer. We have used the past year to take a close look at the right positioning for the future.
Launch of new website
"From the former Ultimate Software, we actually served two types of customers: maritime logistics companies and companies that work with Microsoft Dynamics 365 standard. This came from both our expertises: years of experience in the maritime logistics industry and in-depth knowledge of Microsoft Dynamics 365. This resulted in 2 different websites. After taking a sharp look at our services, target groups and qualities, we decided to launch a new website in which we really focus on our niche market: the maritime logistics sector. From now on, we will focus entirely on maritime logistics. The name and logo have been changed since and we decided to build one new website called 'Ultimate Maritime Logistics'. It was launched at the beginning of October 2021".
During the process of building the new website, the core values of UML were discussed. What makes UML unique and how do core values reflect in business operations? "Our company is innovative, we deliver solutions tailored to the need of our customers and in addition to implementing software, we are committed to our customer base. We serve our customers with all they need to manage their processes."
Unique selling point
Whoever chooses UML, does not just choose the product of Microsoft (Microsoft Dynamics 365) with knowledge of standard processes. The maritime industry is confronted with multiple challenges on a daily basis. Each commodity has its own approach. Complex processes that change frequently. "We built our ERP solution on top of Microsoft's standard software. Seamlessly integrated into one platform with commerce, operations and finance." UML not only has the know-how to advise customers on how to use the software most efficiently, but on-top we have knowledge and experience in the maritime logistics business, making us a good consultancy partner. UML profits from Microsoft's innovations. The software is always up to date and compatible. "Our customers can therefore immediately apply innovations in the software. In 2019, for example, Microsoft came up with the addition of an EAM (Enterprise Asset Management) module in their software. From that moment on, it was possible for our customers to manage not only all their processes via this platform, but also their equipment, buildings and other assets that are present at a port or terminal."
UML is focused on managing processes of different commodities and can therefore serve logistics in 'multi purpose' terminals worldwide. Arne notices that UML's focus on the maritime supply chain is currently expanding from the water towards the land. In recent years, UML has been developing more on the logistics around the terminal. "We know the processes that take place within a logistics supply chain and can forecast them. This predictive data is implemented in the software and used to conclude a comprehensive contract that guides the operational process of deal-to-cash." From this commercial cost and revenue calculation and forecasts from the work order planning, the operational and financial processes can be controlled more and more precisely. This procedure allows a company to make better comparison between the pre- and post-calculation and to work predictably.
In the coming year, this 'deal-to-cash' concept will go live at some of UML's new customers. Existing customers will also move to this new developed concept, which smoothly integrates all operational, supporting and financial processes, allowing them to work more efficiently. As a small company, UML is increasingly confronted with large companies that operate many terminals. It is a challenge to serve these customers in the right manner. "To do so, you have to use your creativity and as a company realize and radiate that you can do". Maybe sometimes we are too modest..."
All in all, Arne looks back on the past year with satisfaction. A year with focus and conscious choices. And an upcoming year with great opportunities and a team to be proud of.
Does your company play a role in the maritime supply chain and are you looking for an integrated solution to manage all processes? Please contact us.