Enterprise resource planning (ERP), a software tool to optimize business process management, allows organizations to use an integrated system to manage and automate many business functions. By employing cloud computing platforms, a company can take its ERP to the next level and provide a more flexible and scalable management solution.
This type of automation permits managers and owners to get a cohesive and instantaneous view of business functionality, including processes and resources from which to draw inferences. ERPs also simplify information flow between departments, resulting in an integrated and unified platform generating less disparate information.
Cloud ERP is growing fast, especially within the service industry where it is driving the bulk of new revenue growth. Considering this progression, it is apparent that cloud ERP is essential to the modern business, from global multinationals to small-to-medium enterprises. Any size organization can exploit these systems, as subscription-based billing can be customized to suit any budget.
Cloud ERP vendors are augmenting professional services automation, financials and human capital management suites to scale with the burgeoning needs. As opposed to legacy ERP providers, which cannot scale and adapt as quickly, cloud-based services are gaining a competitive edge. There are some key benefits of using cloud ERP to manage processes, and here are five of them.
1. Improved ERP performance and keeping up with the times
Moving the ERP to the cloud essentially frees up computational power and resources that are necessary when deploying a standalone ERP solution. This is good news for smaller businesses that cannot afford the heavy infrastructure, because all that is required for cloud ERP to function is a steady internet connection.
Leveraging the Salesforce app cloud platform is helping businesses build and update their cloud ERPs on a six-month cycle without having to create new releases. Companies such as Sage and Kennedy are already using this SaaS platform precisely for this reason.
2. A decrease in operational costs
In-house ERP software requires hardware and the human resources to maintain it. This, in addition to licenses and the ERP software itself, will likely increase the IT budget significantly. Cloud ERP solutions generally have the option of a monthly subscription that can be modular or tailored to the customer’s needs with very little initial outlay cost. The implementation costs are also considerably lower, thus reducing overall operational costs substantially.
Building solutions on a platform negate the development time required to construct programs from scratch, thus resources can be adequately allocated to more challenging aspects that add business value. Businesses can exploit existing platforms and add customizations at a much lower cost to the company than if developing the program in-house.
3. Security enhancements
The data going into and out of an ERP system is generally confidential and thus needs to be protected. Cloud ERP solutions offer superior security solutions that ensure the information is adequately encrypted and protected. User access to cloud-based systems allows activity tracking and thus issues a semblance of control with regard to user accountability.
4. Real-time analytics
Contemporary industry models necessitate real-time analytics to provide process optimization and business intelligence on which to base decisions. Cloud ERP comprises API links to the platform to allow customers to scale reporting and analytics needs accordingly.
Instantaneous access through the cloud makes information immediately accessible which has value, particularly in manufacturing industries where real-time analytics are required to optimize processes.
Cloud ERP supports the continually improving platform-based applications and supports API development and integration, focusing on analytics, integration and real-time application response.
5. UAT and API beta testing in cloud platforms outperforms isolated testing
User acceptance testing and API beta testing has become a common approach. This methodology is more conducive to finding and responding to real-world issues as opposed to testing a product in isolation in an engineering setting. The result is better workflows and responsiveness.
ERP is the way to go for companies today to remain competitive. The commercial landscape is becoming more and more data-centric and thus organizations need solutions to manage the information. Cloud-based software has the added benefit of being cost-effective, faster and more easily scalable than legacy ERP systems, giving it value-added status in the IT management realm.
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