Technology and business processes are irrevocably intertwined for most firms. Yet, many organizations suffer because outdated legacy systems, software and processes fail to work cohesively.
ERP offers a way for businesses to harness their sprawling technology ecosystems and get disparate data, systems and processes to work together holistically. A cloud-based ERP system goes even further by offering all the efficiencies, scalability, automation and attractive price point of the cloud.
A cloud-based ERP offering is a compelling solution for any business that needs to gain and stay in control of a spiraling blend of technology and business processes. Below are five ways this type of solution can help a business harness and stay in control of its systems and processes.
- Manages Data Access and Storage
Today's businesses are producing a record amount of data. To maintain efficiency, data needs to be stored in the most efficient manner possible, with the most important data easily accessible.
Cloud ERP offers those efficiencies, and it is inherently scalable, providing storage and accessibility for giant amounts of data. Users can be easily added or removed from the system, and assigned different levels of accessibility.
Cloud-based databases may be easily shared among different departments as well, facilitating productivity and the innovation that comes from breaking down business unit silos. And data may be easily mined for insights using machine learning and predictive analytics.
The real beauty of cloud-based ERP systems is their ability to function on a large scale while still enabling granular access to data and business insights.
- Improves Security
Data security is one of the biggest worries for most businesses. Trying to manage and maintain on-premises security is an overwhelming, cost-prohibitive task that few companies want to handle.
Cloud-based ERP systems alleviate that responsibility, seamlessly securing data through trusted hosting environments. Cloud infrastructure providers have a lot at stake, and a trusted vendor will be vigilant about security monitoring and management, ensuring clients' data is well protected.
Cloud ERP vendors handle a variety of network management functions for their clients, including automated patching, encryption and protection from large-scale attacks. Concerned customers also have the option of conducting a third-party security audit of prospective cloud ERP vendors to ensure security is up to par.
- Serves as a Single Source of Truth
Just as sharing data access across business departments is vital to efficiency and success, integrating essential business systems and functions is equally important. Being able to share information among accounting, human resources, customer service and sales and marketing departments is critical to maintaining business continuity and growth.
A cloud ERP system does just that, supporting a variety of functionality for different business units while also sharing data and information. It offers a single source of truth for the vast array of records, data sources and systems a company relies on, providing a truly interconnected ecosystem.
Additionally, cloud ERP solutions offer APIs and integrations with important platforms like e-commerce apps, warehouse management and barcode reading.
- Supports Mobility
Harnessing a sprawling technology ecosystem means gaining control over an increasingly mobile and global workforce. A comprehensive business system needs to support all business operations and processes. But most importantly, it must support all workers wherever they are located.
Location is only one factor in supporting a dispersed workforce. Employees need to be centrally supported on a variety of devices. Cloud-based ERP offerings provide secure mobile support out of the box, along with fast access and intuitive user interfaces.
The ability for individual users to have real-time visibility into business processes and systems, from wherever they may be located, is a huge benefit. In addition to boosting productivity, efficiency and innovation, this type of visibility facilitates collaboration among workers, departments and even third-party partners.
The end result is better decision making, increased business insights, profit and margin growth and increased customer satisfaction.
- Automation of Routine Business Processes
One of the problems inherent in a sprawling technology ecosystem is repetitive, manual tasks. Manual data entry and report generation, in any department and for any business process, is subject to human error, repetition and other problems.
Errors lead to bad data and the repercussions of bad data are echoed throughout an entire business. Getting a handle on these routine processes is simple with a cloud ERP system, which automates routine, standard procedures.
Not only does automation eliminate human error, it frees up workers to focus on more complex and challenging tasks like long-term business strategy and growth. Generating good, reliable data is absolutely essential to ensuring business systems, processes and departments work together holistically.
There is simply no need for businesses to suffer because of disparate, legacy systems that require too many resources just to keep running. Cloud-based ERP systems provide a reliable, cost-effective way to harness sprawling technology ecosystems and take back control.
For more on how cloud-based ERP can benefit your business, check out our free guide, Understanding ERP for Non-IT Executives.