Cloud computing is now at the center of nearly every business strategy. The cloud, along with mobile technology, provides employees the ability to work from any location with a web connection. Particularly now with more employees working remotely than ever before. In today’s fast-changing and uncertain environment, CFO and CIO positions within organizations are responsible for providing the best possible tools and resources for their organization to be successful. Most notably when the competition is armed with top-notch cloud-based software platforms that provide access to company performance metrics and data analytics to crucial staff from anywhere in the world, the pressure is on.
First and foremost with business systems and ERP, a digital transformation entails a move to a more dynamic and diverse platform in the cloud. Without this critical step, almost everything else cannot be achieved. The cloud offers accessibility and removes the barriers of a dispersed staff that needs access to data in order to perform their jobs no matter where they are.
In a recent article in Forbes, “According to Gartner, in just three years, 40% of businesses from all industries will have implemented the anywhere operations model to ensure a blended virtual and physical experience for companies’ employees and customers. This model presupposes global round-the-clock support for clients, enablement for employees and availability for business services from anywhere in the world.”
Here are seven features financial and IT executives should look for in an ERP software solution that can help their organization achieve success:
Accessible by everyone in the organization, with a personalized experience
- Each department, and even each individual, should have their own access to the system. And the solution should have the agility to provide each individual role within the organization their own tailored data access, processes, and communication tools.
Mobility is key. Need access anywhere, anytime.
- Solutions that provide accessibility on any device, wherever there’s a web connection, are becoming a necessity. In today’s environment, people expect quick and easy access to information. Whether it’s executives accessing KPI’s on a dashboard, project managers approving purchase orders, business development managers accessing contacts and opportunities, or employees in the field logging time & expenses, there are limitless mobile applications that can increase productivity across the organization.
Integrated Business Intelligence and Analytics bring things into focus
- Tracking key performance indicators is essential to the success of each department. Legacy ERP systems often presented complicated reporting tools with many barriers to presenting the real and actionable data that teams need to be successful. Modern toolsets offer a central place where you can tie in all your data and make better-informed decisions. To navigate the complex waters of government contracting in particular, keeping your fingers on the pulse of your business is essential.
Extendable feature sets
- Many software solutions have features and functionality that are easy to add and truly provide a personalized experience for businesses. Add-on capabilities include customer relationship management (CRM), human capital management (HCM), time & expense, requisitions and purchasing, and much more. Some cloud platforms may allow the ability to truly customize the application with your own personal features, screens, and fields.
The ability to rapidly scale as your company grows
- Easily and quickly add performance and data storage, support for multi-company or multi-currency capabilities, expandable roles and security, the flexibility to deploy anywhere, and customizable features and functionality. Careful selection of ERP software that has these features is key to enabling growth.
Security in the modern environment
- It’s a common misconception that your data is not safe in the cloud. However, the truth is that cloud providers often have more expertise in securing data than in-house IT departments. Because of economies of scale, cloud companies can give your business a boost in ways that would be difficult to afford.
User Experience / Ease of use
- Many solutions now come equipped with web-based user guides, customizable documentation to provide personalized process help to employees, workflow, document management, communication and collaboration tools, and much more. Software that is intuitive and improves the end-user experience is vital.
So what is it that has brought about the rise of cloud computing? According to cloud ERP provider, Acumatica, “Fortunately, new technologies have been introduced, such as widespread Internet availability, low cost of mobile devices, expansion of computing power, and massive storage availability. Technology has improved so much that very high functioning applications can safely and securely run remotely on somebody else’s hardware. This eliminates the need for individual companies to deal with hardware issues and allows their employees to work anywhere at any time.”
For additional guidance and resources on Cloud ERP designed for federal contractors, visit our webinar page HERE and register for an upcoming event.