How cloud solutions for business reveal ERP's true potential

How cloud solutions for business reveal ERP's true potential

Published: 10/8/2014 4:34:21 PM

Despite the promise that enterprise resource planning and related financial management software hold, many companies are not getting as much value from these solutions as initially expected, according to a new survey. In this way, legacy ERP is kind of like that hotshot quarterback who gets drafted in the first round, only to later retire early after failing to make the cut. This lack of overarching ERP is perhaps because not enough companies are leveraging cloud ERP software, as the core benefits offered by cloud solutions for business can help ERP to achieve its true potential.

Of the more than 1,500 global pros polled recently by one enterprise software manufacturer, around 50 percent of them said that their current ERP solutions were only basic or adequate. One reason why this is so often the case, CIO Insight reported, is because many legacy ERP software suites do not have the capabilities modern businesses need. The survey found that many adoptees of legacy offerings thought it was too difficult for them to get information from their solution, and 48 percent of survey participants said they wanted to be able to get at data stored in their ERP system more easily.

Perhaps one key reason why legacy ERP offerings often fail to make the grade is because they are not built with modern tools and workflows in mind. In particular, CIO Insight reported that many companies want to be able to access ERP data from a mobile device like a tablet or smartphone, but are often unable to do so. The survey found that only a quarter of respondents said they access their ERP solution with a smartphone or tablet, even though 65 percent of them stated that mobility was important for communication and for giving remote workers further access to mission-critical data.

Why cloud ERP software is so beneficial for companies today
If the problem with most legacy ERP solutions at the moment is that they do not support mobile devices and they don't make data accessible enough, then the answer is simple: opt for cloud solutions for business. By hosting everything in the cloud, the major issues with ERP today can be offset and overcome. It's no coincidence that 64 percent of survey participants like the cloud or a customized hybrid option for their ERP deployment.

"Smaller companies that want to gain the benefits of scale, lower their costs, and drive standardization should consider this option now, as should larger companies looking to lower costs and drive standardization within divisions or functional units," a 2013 report from Booz & Company stated. "ERP in the cloud is the future, and even companies that have good reason not to take the plunge yet should be monitoring developments and considering their longer-range plans."

Perhaps the biggest reason why the cloud is so good for ERP deployments is because of its inherent flexibility and scalability. Legacy ERP has an inherent accessibility problem since it is so often deployed as an on-premises solution. This may have been fine decades ago when all computing happened on just a small cluster of machines, but it is no longer feasible considering the state of IT at most firms today. Not only do employees now need to be able to access their resources from the office, they also likely need the data when they're on the road or working from home. Since cloud ERP software is remotely hosted independent of any specific machine, it is accessible from anywhere. This inherent flexibility makes it the ideal option for businesses today.

"Running an in house system means brings with it the added responsibility of dealing with any problems that may occur such as on-site hardware implications, software problems and network issues which makes troubleshooting an error somewhat difficult," CloudTweaks contributor Rashed Khan wrote. "However, with an SaaS system all of this is the vendor's responsibility so the customer does not need to worry about any problems that may occur."

How to get the very best cloud ERP software solution possible
Nevertheless, getting a cloud ERP software solution that meets all of your needs from day one is not a simple as changing a light bulb. A lot of time and effort must go into the platform selection and implementation process, and if something is amiss here the whole process can be permanently derailed. Instead of trying to go it alone, it is best to select a trusted consultant and managed services partner to help in the transition. Like a Himalayan Sherpa, a valued partner like Arxis Technology can go a long way toward helping you reach the mountaintop that is a successful and long-lasting cloud ERP software implementation.

"Their business acumen, consulting experience and extensive accounting and technology expertise make them a great partner and well-equipped to optimize Intacct applications for small and mid-sized businesses," Taylor Macdonald, Vice President of Channels for Intacct, said about Arxis Technology.

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