7 Reasons to Move your ERP to the Cloud
With the accelerating pace of modern business, we live in an always-on world where we expect answers on demand. Unlike Cloud ERP systems, traditional financial systems are a barrier to this level of agility. Back when they were originally designed, it could take days or weeks to pull together and process data. That speed is no match for today’s expectations, which means the answers to critical questions aren’t there when we need them.
Every Month That Passes Is Another Missed Opportunity
Businesses with ambitious growth plans need a financial system that can deliver timely, accurate answers on demand. Without that information, teams can miss warning signs or opportunities. Margins become tighter because it’s hard to track costs. Billing questions go unanswered. Key performance indicators (KPIs) are consistently behind the curve. Your company can’t afford to wait for a crisis to happen to make a change.
Stay Ahead with Cloud ERP
With modern cloud ERP systems, finance leaders become forward looking instead of just historians. While the traditional system kept only an historic transactional record, today’s connectivity breaks down barriers and connects finance and operations into a single view.
Implemented in a few months, sometimes even weeks, a cloud financial system immediately syncs with the rest of the business. Instead of delivering data in a silo, it presents financial data in a larger context, showing the impact of decisions. It automates inefficient manual processes and consolidates data. Once implemented finance becomes a key partner in day-to-day operations and strategic decision making.
Agile companies see the risk of delays to their success, they know timely data is the key to competing in today’s digital world. Here are seven reasons now is the time to move to cloud ERP.
1. You Can’t Afford to Delay Making a Change
To compete in today’s fast-paced business climate, companies need to be able to quickly jump on new opportunities and respond to issues before they happen. However, many companies are grappling with complex manual processes and unwieldy, rigid systems that don’t evolve with them.
- Finance leaders can’t adapt legacy software without involving IT.
- Fragile multi-step processes can’t be dismantled without risk or downtime.
- You aren’t able to update reports as you identify new important business metrics to track
By comparison, a cloud ERP system is agile—able to quickly adapt just when it’s most critical.
- Finance teams can reconfigure workflow or data points easily, without IT support.
- It’s easier to manage multi-step processes through automation.
- With point-and-click menus, employees can create or update reports and dashboards to analyze new locations, revenue streams, or any other metric.
The business no longer has to postpone game changing plans because they don’t have the infrastructure to support them.
2. The Business Won’t Wait for Answers
A complete view of day-to-day operations is critical to running a business. Without finance information, it’s impossible to keep spending or margins under control. When that information is siloed managers can’t access critical data to guide decision making. The effects get compounded every day an action is delayed—negatively impacting the bottom line and the ability to compete.
Alterinatively, in the cloud, any stakeholder can access data in real-time. More importantly they can combine financial and operational data for a complete view of the business. In this context, business managers can get a more accurate read on business performance, whether it’s customer acquisition cost or tracking projects.
3. Information Gridlocks Are Costing Money
While many organizations find creative workarounds and manual processes, these are time-consuming and a waste of resources. They also come with the unavoidable risk of human error.
The valid concern of the expense and downtime of upgrades and integration of new applications prevent companies from automation. But that’s a high price to pay because data that is sitting around waiting to be entered or consolidated is useless until it can get into the hands of the manager who needs it. By the time it gets there it’s often out of date. This information gridlock only grows as the business grows.
Cloud ERP systems are built to work in tandem with other functional areas, eliminating the need for manual spreadsheets and other workarounds. An important part of what sets cloud ERP systems apart is that they easily connect to other applications like CRM. From these applications, data flows directly into the financial system for processing and analyzing. Also, the flexibility of the cloud means many functionalities can be run as built-in modules instead of separate systems. Examples of these include expense management, billing, and project management. As a result of centralizing this data businesses achieve an integrated view of financial and operational data that results in lower cost, increased efficiency as well as providing real-time insight to improve decision making.
4. Automation Makes You Lean
Up-and-coming businesses gain a substantial competitive advantage when they use digital connectivity to increase productivity and improve outcomes. By contrast, some established business are hesitant to change because of the long history of their processes, even if they are an inefficient passing of paper documents from department to department. These manual processes are a constant drain on resources, resulting in redundant data entry, copying, and physically storing documents, which creates complex audit trails. Alternatively, going paperless immediately simplifies processes, saving money and improving efficiency.
A connected system integrated with other cloud-based applications eliminates the need for time-wasting manual processes. Also, it allows companies to take advantage of the features of these modern applications and smart devices. By automating processes like billing, expense reports, and timesheets, companies can not only improve efficiency and accuracy but also prevent unwitting loss of revenue.
5. Self-Service Helps You Do More
Access to information helps manage change and optimize the performance of business operations. But traditional finance systems require specialized expertise to build or create custom reports. As a result, finance becomes a logjam, preventing the flow of data needed for analysis. Since decision makers can’t wait around for answers they either move on or rely on unreliable workarounds to get the information, which undermines the effectiveness of the business.
Cloud ERP systems on the other hand provide self-service access to reports and user-friendly editing tools. They also allow finance leaders to control not only who has access to create reports but also the data they are able to view.
Finance can easily create reports and give access to others in the organization so they have up-to-date financial and business data. They can create and maintain reports or delegate them to other departments.
6. You Have to Find Answers Faster
Everyone is trying to get the most out of each workday and is more impatient for answers. While connecting processes and data puts a foundation in place, automation only goes so far. You won’t have a complete view until your team can collaborate and quickly react when exceptions happen. Cloud based financial systems are ideal for this online collaboration. People have information at their fingertips so when conversations happen they can answer questions quickly and reliably. As a result, collections improve and orders convert to invoices fasters.
7. You Want to Think Ahead
In a digitally connected world, businesses have to be agile to outpace the competition. They need to be able to quickly pivot in response to new opportunities or challenges, which can come up at anytime. While the finance team plays a key role in this strategic decision making, it’s a lot to expect when they are spending a significant amount of time putting out fires and when they aren’t getting important data in a timely manner. Cloud ERP systems free up resources through automation and deliver timely, accurate KPIs. Instead of being bogged down with administrative tasks, finance leaders and teams are free to focus their energy on strategic analysis and planning.
Can You Afford to Wait to Make the Switch?
Today’s businesses face complexities that aren’t going to get any easier. That’s why it’s critical to get off software that is inflexible or can’t deliver timely information. Each day only adds more wasted resources and lost opportunities.
On the plus side, cloud ERP system implementations avoid the downtime and risk of traditional on-premise implementations. Also, it can be implemented incrementally over the first few weeks or months. You can start with core financial functions then can add new modules, reports, and integrate other applications, depending on priority and available resources.
A Cloud ERP System Brings Fresh Agility
From the moment the new system is up and running, the finance team can start taking advantage of self-service and automation features. At the same time, they’ll be delivering more insightful reporting to other parts of the organization. Once all the functionality and connections are in place, you’ll break through all the barriers that kept financial data from informing day to day operations. Ultimately, a cloud ERP system provides agility needed to meet the demands of an ever-changing, connected world. So you can face the future with confidence.