Fourie van der Merwe has been appointed as MD of Bytes Managed Solutions (Bytes MS), part of the Altron group of companies and the sole distributor of NCR products in South Africa, effective 1 March 2016.
Deidre Le Hanie steps down after 11 years at the helm.
Van der Merwe joined the organisation in 1999, when it was still known as National Data Systems (NDS), and advanced through the ranks, progressing from regional manager: central operations to GM: servce delivery within a year.
He continued to grow within the company over the years, taking on roles such as director: service delivery in 2001 and operations director in 2002, until he was appointed as chief operations officer in 2013.
His accomplishments during this time included the design and implementation of a centralised call centre to improve client service levels; conducting a due diligence into the acquisiton of CS Holdings, a Bytes MS competitor, and subsequently managing the integration of the services portion into Bytes MS; the introduction of a mobile solution for CSRs (Field Technicians); restructuring the supply chain operation; and assuming the responsibility for creating a business enablement and transformation structure, as well as a business unit structure to incubate new solutions and services. Van der Merwe also led Bytes MS through a crtical change over of its service management system with minimal disruption to clients’ services.
Van der Merwe’s vision is to take Bytes MS further on its journey, prioritising the need to be an organisation dedicated to quality and high performance to meet the technology and service requirements of its customers.
“We need to understand our customers’ business and how we can enable their business through the products and services we supply,” he says. “The challenge we face, alongside our customers, is the constant, high-paced change in technology and solutions. It is up to us to ensure that we can align in lock-step with those changes.
“I foresee that Bytes MS will be a significantly different company in the next five to 10 years. If you look at the disruptors out there, those companies like Uber, Google and Amazon that have changed the way the game is played within their own industries, we need to realise that it’s not a question of if we will change, but when, how and to what extent.
“We need to develop an innovative mindset so that we can continue to succeed, grow and meet the future head on. I see Bytes MS as being on the verge of the next big step in technology and solutions change, and I can’t wait to lead the company through that.”
Le Hanie has decided to step down after 18 years with the business, 11 of these as MD, to pursue personal development opportunities. She says: “It is with much excitement that I hand the reins to Fourie. I have the utmost faith in him to steer the future of Bytes MS in exciting new directions, and I know that he is worthy of this opportunity and will receive overwhelming support from our stakeholders.”