With so many businesses moving their day-to-day operations to the cloud, it’s no wonder so many business leaders are beginning to wonder if cloud ERP is right for their company. Fortunately, weighing the benefits and drawbacks of a cloud-based ERP system is an easy task—with no IT background required.
What Businesses Are Best for Cloud ERP?
It’s rare to find a business that isn’t right for cloud ERP, but there are certainly some types of businesses or situations that are more prime for switching to ERP in the cloud than others. If you’re considering a cloud ERP system, start by evaluating the current state of your business as a whole.
If you already have an ERP system that your business is running onsite, when was the last time you purchased hardware for that system? If the answer to that question is more than five years ago, you could be facing a major—and expensive—hardware refresh. If you were to transition your ERP system to the cloud, however, you could eliminate hardware refreshes altogether, as your ERP applications would be delivered to your desktop via an internet connection rather than via the servers in your office. In short, ERP in the cloud places the burden of hardware ownership on your cloud service provider rather than on your business.
Growth is another key indicator that your business is ready for cloud ERP. Fast-growth companies—particularly ones looking at new locations or testing new markets—are a great fit for cloud-based ERP. With companies like these, the ability to offload hardware, installation, and maintenance costs to a cloud service provider can help launch new locations quicker and with a lower cost than an on-premise ERP solution. Similarly, all offices and locations can connect to the same ERP system (again, via an internet connection) regardless of where they are physically located.
If your line of business requires frequent shifts in the number of ERP users you have each month, cloud-based ERP is an even better fit. Since cloud-based ERP is purchased on a month-to-month basis, you can save money by purchasing exactly the number of ERP licenses you need each month—no more buying for peak usage and paying for unused licenses throughout the course of the year.
But Is Cloud ERP Secure?
Generally speaking, there are two types of cloud environments for your ERP system: public or private. Public clouds are shared space, meaning that your ERP system would be hosted alongside the ERP systems of other companies. Private clouds are segmented space, meaning that your ERP system would be cordoned off from the ERP systems of other companies.
Both types of cloud are generally secure for the everyday ERP user. If your business is highly regulated, however, or if you have other restrictions on your data, a private cloud may be better for your ERP system. With so many companies using cloud ERP, the once-common concerns about cloud security have cleared away.
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