About Sahara Mining Services
With offices and workshops all across West Africa, Sahara Mining Services is an established mining services group that prides itself as the ”on the ground operator”. They have taken key West African mines through their lifecycle from grassroots discovery all the way to mine closure. Depending on the workload and season, Sahara employs 100 to 200 staff across West Africa from at least 6 different West African countries and a handful of non-African ex-pats. Most of Sahara’s employees are bilingual at the minimum with English and French being the most commonly spoken languages. Sahara Mining Services provides Drilling, Exploration, Surveying, Geotech, Consulting services supported by some of the world’s most respected mining consultants.
For more information about Sahara Mining Services please visit: Sahara Mining Services
Sahara Mining Services turned to Big Bang for a full revamp of their management solution to Cloud and the results turned out better than expected.
In 2010, Sahara Mining Services was incorporated and started its operations in Burkina Faso. After 5 years of rapid growth and expansion, they came to realize that their disparate systems were becoming obsolete and would not be able to follow or support their company’s growth.
The environment where Sahara operates is quite complex, with subsidiaries in West African countries that do not always share the same official language, local currency, accounting standards, etc. They had information and data coming from different systems, all painstakingly consolidated on Excel each month for financial and management reporting purposes.
“We knew 100% that we wanted to go with a cloud ERP for the real-time consolidation and the overview you can have of your business from the dashboard,” says Aurelien Douyere, CFO of Sahara Mining Services. The challenges of this particular implementation, however, were unique because Sahara Mining Service was dealing with multi-languages (i.e. English and French), multi-accounting standards (i.e. SYSCOHADA, French accounting standards, and IFRS) and multiple time zones for a simultaneous “Go-Live” across 5 countries and even more subsidiaries.
“We basically needed a common system shared across the group, in all the subsidiaries, which would present the data in a simple and standard format to all users and I trusted Big Bang to do the work. It was reassuring to know their main office was in Montreal and that they had a second one in Mauritius with the perfect time zone for us… but all in all what I trusted most about Big Bang were the people we spoke with.”
– Aurelien Douyere, CFO of Sahara Mining Services
The success of this implementation rested upon the professionalism and devotion of Sahara and Big Bang personnel. “I am extremely proud of what was achieved and pleased with the efforts both teams put into it in order to ensure the success of this project. The end result and value added to the business is quite exceptional, especially in this part of the World.” Says Aurelien.
Thanks to the expertise of Big Bang and the power of NetSuite, Sahara Mining Services now has exactly what they wanted: a multi-language, multi-currency, multi-country, multi-location and multi-accounting standards compliance system all in one. Big Bang was in charge of the full package: implementation, development, migration, integration, support, and training. “We are 100% in the Cloud and can unleash the full power of NetSuite wherever our business will bring us in West Africa. We have an instant local and consolidated views of our financial position, performances, stock levels, commitments, and projects whether we are in the office, in our workshops, or even on-site in the most remote locations in the World. With this new system, it feels like we are now playing in a new (major) league and that sky is the limit. We are lucky to be using this top-notch system in this part of the World and this will no doubt play a key role in Sahara’s next chapter and growth.” boasts Aurelien.
Since going live in 5 countries in January 2017 NetSuite ‘Saved Searches’ and automatic email functionality are leveraged extensively by the Drilling Manager and maintenance personnel even while on the road in West Africa, one of the most remote places in the world. They receive critical automatic emails on their phones from the system letting them now the spare parts inventory stock levels by location. All Department Managers also receive personalized consolidated reports on their performances across West Africa.
Big Bang is proud to have helped Sahara Mining Services evolve alongside a better business solution that not only brought their departments together but also offers the entire team a common platform where they can work together towards their strategic and operational objectives.
“Looking back on the implementation, there are two things I have never been surer about. The first one is that NetSuite was hands down the right system for us – Its combined unique features just make sense to us and I cannot think of any other ERP that would have brought as much value to our business. The second one was the choice of Big Bang as NetSuite Partner. The friendly collaborative approach, deep knowledge of the system, and multi-lingual skills were just what we needed and we feel lucky to have had such a partner along us in this journey.”
– Aurelien Douyere, CFO of Sahara Mining Services