When Are Cloud CRM and ERP the Right Choice?

The cloud has been a hot topic for some time now in the business world, thanks in part to how it can be applied to many different areas and types of operations as well as the genuine and significant benefits it offers in some instances. As a deployment method for enterprise resource planning and customer relationship management software, the cloud offers some unique advantages that aren't always replicated with software deployed via on-premise servers.

However, cloud deployment isn't better than on-premise software in every situation or in every respect. Companies interested in the usefulness of cloud ERP and CRM should consider the specifics and see if their operations will benefit from the use of platforms like NetSuite. Here are a few areas to consider in terms of cloud ERP and CRM:

Ease of access
While CRM and ERP deployed on-premise can be configured for access at more than one location, such a process can be made easier through the use of the cloud. Issues with accessibility and compatibility at multiple locations have less potential to become particularly troublesome or costly when using a cloud deployment. This is due to the premium placed on compatibility when cloud-delivered ERP and CRM systems are designed. Accessing these platforms at more than one location or through mobile devices is often simpler - although modern, on-premise business software has also made major strides in this category.

Lower upfront costs
The structure of some business software platforms' licensing and use agreements, such as NetSuite, mean that part of the initial cost of implementation is spread out over the life of the system. A licensing fee is paid on a monthly basis, as opposed to all at once. It's important to note that lower upfront costs don't necessarily translate into lower overall costs, but the change in the way that cost is met can certainly be advantageous.

A new or growing company may not have the financial flexibility that a more established one does, but that rising organization could still significantly benefit from using CRM or ERP software. Using cloud-deployed software provides a different set of terms for payment, opening additional doors for organizations that are confident in growth but may not have cash on hand. Additional cost reductions, such as minimizing or eliminating the need for IT workers to perform internal maintenance and the lack of a need for physical server storage at a company, should also be taken into account.

A specific NetSuite advantage
While not all business software on the market has a high level of flexibility, NetSuite certainly does. The platform's cloud-deployed nature makes especially well-suited to combine the traditional functions of CRM, ERP, e-Commerce and other systems. NetSuite is able to meet the needs of companies that have a presence in both the manufacture and sales of products, as well as provide a direct platform for online sales to other organizations. The cross-functionality of these different pieces of the system is important, as it allows for better overall visibility and provides leaders with a clearer picture of current operations.

That wide range of applications extends into NetSuite's SuiteApp service, which offers a variety of business- and industry-specific additions to help businesses become more agile in their own markets. This adaptability is an important part of what makes NetSuite such a powerful business solution. Companies that also decide to work with an experienced CRM and ERP partner will find themselves in a better position to realize the fullest possible advantages from using cloud-deployed business software.

by The TM Group

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