DoHome Plc. Drives Business Innovation with Digital Transformation
Dohome Plc is a Thailand-based company that provides construction materials, home improvement and furnishing supplies, and household appliances. It is one of only two Isan province-based companies listed on the Stock Exchange of Thailand with a market value of more than US $1 billion. In this series we speak to Mrs. Saliltip Ruangsuttipap, Deputy Managing Director- Accounting, Finance and Organization Support about the company’s expansion plans and digital transformation initiatives
Q. Tell us more about Dohome Plc:
Dohome is a family business, established in Ubon Ratchathani, a major rice-growing region in Isan, about 600km north of Bangkok. Our goal is to be a ‘one stop shop’ for consumers, offering a range of construction materials and home furnishings, at higher quality but lower prices. Four years ago, we expanded our business to Bangkok and continue to grow in Thailand. We currently operate 14 retail outlets and plan to increase this to 32 by 2025.
As a family-run business, we put our people first in everything we do. Dohome empowers our employees to be innovative and creative within our organisation and to create a happy workplace, together. Dohome considers our business partners very important in our success as well as our duty to society in being a responsible and socially conscious business.
Q. Technology has been at the core of an organization’s ability to become more agile and resilient. How did Dohome respond to COVID-19 disruptions and transform to become more future-ready?
Since the start of the pandemic, we have seen a gradual change in our customer behaviour. With majority of the retail stores being shut down and more people staying at home, there was a growing trend for home improvement projects and interior decoration. Retailers such as Dohome traditionally relied on customer footfall in retail stores; but last year, e-commerce played a significant role in shaping new consumer buying patterns.
As such, we quickly adapted to the new way of doing business to maintain our growth. One key priority for us was to strengthen our e-commerce platform. We also quickly deployed a ‘change management’ team to ensure that all of our employees were aware of the new direction we were taking and would be aligned with the new initiatives that were being implemented.
For us, before any digital transformation would take place, it was very important to ensure that our people would understand the objectives, get upskilled, and be driven towards the same goals. With strong support from Dohome management, we were ready to embark on technology transformation to strengthen internal capabilities as well as innovate new business models.
Q. Dohome recently selected SAP to address some of the key challenges. Could you explain what led to this decision? What were some of the benefits?
Investing in the right technology was a first step towards growing the business and achieving our goals.
Our strategy was to unify our data and automate business processes and for that we digitized our core with SAP S4HANA. Storing information in a centralised location made it easily accessible to everyone in our organisation. This allowed for better collaboration and planning. In addition, accessing real-time data vastly improved our inventory and stock turnover and aided to better forecasting. A reduction in replenishment lead time helped to reduce safety stock levels and prevent waste. Achieving these new efficiencies helped us better serve customer needs by supplying the right products at the right time.
We also leveraged SAP Intelligent Robotic Process Automation (iRPA) to reduce manual processes and boosted efficiency in our regular day-to-day activities, especially finance department.
For our company, it was vital that employees followed the same learning curve to keep pace with the future growth of Dohome. As such, SAP SuccessFactors was the next stage of technology implementation, in line with our people-first strategy. We implemented Learning Management System to train employees and evolve our workforce to adapt to change.
The knowledge and expertise of SAP teams as well as implementation partners – Atos for SAP S4HANA & ABeam Consulting for SAP Successfactors, provided an excellent all-round support system. With new technology, today our organization and our people are more empowered to deal with the uncertainties of the future.
Q. Many companies are undergoing digital transformation to prepare themselves for a post-pandemic era. What would be your advice to them?
Digital transformation helps an organisation keep up with emerging customer demands and new market opportunities. It is no longer considered a luxury investment but is definitely necessary for business survival in this new normal. Digital transformation is a constant evolution and will continue to drive economic competitiveness. When we consider the post-pandemic period, one thing is certain: consumer digital habits have changed forever. Customers are shopping online more and using more connected devices such as smartphones, tablets, and smart voice speakers. Organisations must take these new trends into consideration to attract and retain consumers in a digital world.