4 Key Factors in Moving to Cloud ERP
What is ERP? The Fundamentals
As businesses grow it becomes increasingly difficult to manage data with spreadsheets and entry-level software like QuickBooks. That’s where Cloud ERP comes in. ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) is business management software that centralizes information across functions and departments into one database.
At its core ERP automates workflows and other business processes, increasing efficiency and ensuring data integrity. With centralized information at their fingertips, finance leaders have the cross-departmental visibility into business performance. So they can analyze scenarios, identify opportunities, and significantly increase efficiency.
Moving to Cloud ERP – The Journey from On-Premise
Starting in the 1990s ERP adoption climbed—and so did the costs of implementing, maintaining, and customizing the system to meet specific needs. Adopting ERP meant capital investment in expensive hardware and software.
Instead of in-house servers, Cloud ERP software runs on a network of remote servers. With the cloud companies of all sizes can take advantage of infrastructure they would never be able to afford on their own. Moreover, as new technologies emerge, cloud systems are better able to keep pace with security and other demands.
Automatic Updates, No Costly Upgrades or Downtime
Cloud providers release regular automatic updates throughout the year, eliminating costly upgrades. Companies can funnel resources they would have spent on hardware and other related costs to strategic initiatives. Plus, because updates are automatic, organizations are always up to date on the most recent version and able to take advantage of the latest features.
Rapid Return on Investment
After moving to cloud ERP, businesses quickly benefit from workflow automation, which reduces operational inefficiencies and increases productivity. ERP also provides deep, real-time insights essential for a growing company to track business performance and identify opportunities.
Top Business Value Benefits of ERP:
- Improved insights from real-time reports and dashboards
- Reduced operational costs through automating routine business processes like AP
- Better efficiency, and a common user experience across functions supported by well-defined business processes
- Reduced risk, with better data integrity and financial controls
Four Important Factors When Moving to Cloud ERP
- Automating core financial and operational processes
The right ERP software provides accounting functionality built on a multi-dimensional general ledger. That translates into better visibility into your finances and operations. Flexible reporting gives you real-time visibility into your data—at a high level, all the way down to the individual transaction. Deep core accounting functionality is essential, so you can automate important activities like procure-to-pay and order-to-cash.
- Ability to scale as your business grows.
Business doesn’t stand still so don’t get locked into an inflexible ERP system. While some organizations start with multi-entity management, revenue management, and project accounting right away, others add them later. The point is to make sure your ERP system is able to evolve as your business evolves.
- Integrating other best-in-class applications
Instead of forcing you into a one-size-fits all system, look for a vendor that allows simple integration of applications. You should be able to easily tie in solutions like Salesforce and configure them to fit your exact needs.
- Work with an experienced consultant
When selecting an ERP system, it is important that the software aligns with the processes and goals of your company while providing the expertise required for a successful deployment.
- An experienced ERP consultant starts by getting a deep understanding of your processes and operations. They’ll look at your workflows so they can configure the system to match them.
- A smooth implementation requires detailed planning and diligent project management so make sure your consultant has a tried and true approach.
- Your consultant should collaborate with you to implement the most cost-effective but comprehensive data migration—so you can preserve and leverage vital historical data.
In conclusion, the benefits of ERP extend way beyond greater efficiency and productivity — these systems provide insights to transform the business. Moving to Cloud ERP turns insights into strategic decisions—extending the role of the CFO far beyond financial management into a highly valued member of the C-Suite.
Sage Intacct provides innovative ERP automation that lowers your costs, increases security, and improves productivity. Watch this short product tour to learn more.