02 Dec UNPLUGG IT HLELA MAGAZINE FEATURE – BY VUSI MASWILI
HELPING STOKVELS AND FUNERAL HOMES BRIDGE THE DIGITAL DIVIDE
When Jennifer Mngomezulu, 33, and her husband, Vusi Mngomezulu, were approached by a funeral home, back in 2006, to develop administrative software, they had no idea what to expect. They developed the software but afterwards the client decided that they did not want it anymore. Many people would have seen this setback as a reason to abondon the business but the couple persevered and used the lesson as an opportunity to grow.
Today UnpluggIT Solution, a 100% black-owned and managed business is going strong.
FROM HUMBLE BEGINNING TO BIG BUSINESS
Today, the company helps funeral homes and stokvels to bridge the technology devide by helping them move from recording all their contribution, benefits and claims in old passport lookalike notebook towards using the right software for their businesses. UnpluggIT achieves this goal by developing customised software solutions that not only simplify record-keeping, administration of claims and provide convenient options for payment of contributions, but also minimise fraud, theft and robbery.
They are currently developing customised software solutions for various funeral homes, stokvels and corporate clients like Hollard, MTN and AllLife.
The Mngomezulu’s are hands-on in their business with Jennifer not only being a co-founder but also Account Manager. Her husband, who has extensive experience in the IT sector, is the other cofounder and in charge of all overall management of the business as the CEO.
BELOW JENNIFER TELLS US A BIT MORE ABOUT HER BUSINESS:
What are your responsibilities as an Account Manager?
Managing client relationships, business development, management of staff who service our clients.
What is most fulfilling about what you do?
Providing solutions for clients through team work.
What is the most challenging thing about what you do?
Having to deal with people with different personalities.
What challenges did you face when you started your business?
Limited cash flow and having to commute from Johannesburg to Cape Town as our first client was based in Cape Town.
What is the best advice you have received?
Advice from my husband: Own up to your mistakes. Don’t dwell too much on your mistakes, instead focus on moving forward.
What is your motto in life?
“Uzoyithola kanjani uhleli ekhoneni” (nothing in life is achieved by doing nothing – no work no pay)
What is your advice to aspiring entrepreneurs an Account Managers?
Equip yourself with education.
Do you belong to a burial society?
No, I prefer the simplicity and security of funeral insurance