Get to know: Hepsy Mkhungo, Managing Director, One Linkage
Hepsy Mkhungo, Managing Director, One Linkage

Get to know: Hepsy Mkhungo, Managing Director, One Linkage

Describe your current job role and a summary of the business model of your organisation?

As Managing Director of One Linkage, Hepsy Mkhungo spearheaded the development of Linkage platform, a cloud-based platform that bridges the gap between corporates and SMEs. Linkage empowers Enterprise and Supplier Development stakeholders to effectively manage, track, and develop SMEs for integration into corporate supply chains.

Supplier diversity, localisation, and inclusive procurement are fundamental to its philosophy. Linkage brings trust and credibility to the process. As an AWS Advanced tier partner, One Linkage also has professional technology services.

What are your strengths and abilities that you bring to the above role?

With over 20 years in Enterprise and Supplier Development ecosystem, Hepsy brings invaluable expertise and industry knowledge with an end to end sight of the challenges faced by both corporates and SMEs alike gained from her roles as a practitioner, consultant, and small business owner.

Her comprehensive and intimate understanding of the challenges faced by both SME and supply chain practitioners led to the creation of Linkage platform as a dedicated tool to manage various SME interaction use cases by corporates.

Please describe the expectations of the end customers that you address. What are their pain points today?

Linkage addresses the trust deficit between corporates and SMEs. In most corporates there is no transparency on how SMEs can access opportunities whether development, funding or procurement and on the opposite side, supply chain practitioners want to know the profile and the capability of the SME to deliver opportunities.

The Linkage platform fosters transparency and removes obstacles that hinder impactful engagement between the two stakeholders.

Which generic technologies and innovations can make a difference to your end customers’ business?

Utilising Linkage empowers corporates to meet supply chain transformation goals while granting SMEs supplier opportunities and development to meet corporate standards. It streamlines Enterprise and Supplier Development fund management and procurement, providing advanced analytics for informed decision-making through an analytics tool.

QuickSight embedded in Linkage is used to present data back to communities by reporting on ESG, Enterprise and Supplier Development efforts and practices undertaken by corporates. The Linkage platform is now available on the AWS marketplace making it accessible globally to be utilised by NGO’s and corporates who operate in South Africa.

How can a channel partner in your industry disrupt the regional market and gain a leading competitive position?

A channel partner can disrupt the market by leveraging technology to digitalise their Enterprise and Supplier Development programme management. Despite not hailing from a technology background, Hepsy recognised the significance of building a technology solution to drive impact in the Enterprise and Supplier Development space.

Linkage addresses challenges effectively, aligning with its success in understanding and solving industry-specific pain points.

Which non-competitive business in the region do you admire for innovative usage of technology?

Hepsy holds an admiration for local businesses like Yoco or any other fintech solutions that demonstrate agility and innovation with limited resources, effectively addressing customer pain points more rapidly than the big players in the industry.

Which aspects of your job role do you find rewarding and which challenging?

Making a meaningful impact on SME development and supplier diversity, and witnessing positive transformations in the supply chain is rewarding.

Navigating complex regulatory environments, addressing evolving customer needs and technological advancements is challenging.

How do you best like to de-stress and recharge off work?

Hepsy enjoys outdoor activities like hiking, unwinding with books, or spending quality time with loved ones, traveling and learning more about other entrepreneurs in different markets. During difficult times, she recharges and maintains balance by watching business related documentaries and other uplifting content.

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