November 17, 2020
There was a time when distributors that were hesitant to move their ERP to the cloud were justified. But that time has long since passed. We’re in an environment where technology advancements are moving at warp speed. And the issues and challenges legitimately raised years ago have long since been resolved. In fact, the benefits being added to the “pro” column in a cloud assessment, continue to expand.
Some of the misconceptions that decision-makers have historically been most concerned about include:
- Data accessible to outsiders and other security issues
- Frequent outages
- It’s too expensive
- Too disruptive to switch
- Can’t customize ERP to address unique needs
With the emergence of so many cloud solutions in the past few years, these misconceptions have been dispelled repeatedly. Uptime is now near perfect and security is stronger than ever and is continually improving. Data protected by world-class cloud companies is under heavy scrutiny and is audited to ensure compliance. Cloud solutions are shown to be much more cost effective and deliver greater value compared to on-premises options. And the unique needs of a business can be addressed through extensibility instead of a modification. But what’s more important to consider today are benefits beyond those old fears. Instead we need to focus on the way cloud solutions engage people, streamline processes, and improve profits.
Distributors have historically faced labor shortage challenges, and one of the best ways to engage employees is to provide them with solutions that support collaboration and make their everyday lives easier. With a modern cloud solution, distributors are more likely to attract and retain talent in their organization. User adoption rates are higher, as the solutions are much more intuitive to navigate than legacy systems, are accessible from a mobile device, and provide the dashboards needed to optimize daily activities.
With a fully integrated, distribution ERP cloud solution, best-practices are built into the processes. Workflows and alerts can be used to streamline operations and focus employees on the most important KPIs. Data-driven decision-making is made possible through comprehensive enterprise analytics. And the ease of use of those capabilities translates into a smarter, more effective workforce. In addition, because the solution is in the cloud, the team has access to continuous innovation and will be ready to react to changing dynamics in the industry.
At a time of such uncertainty, any opportunity to optimize profits must be prioritized. When investing in a cloud ERP, distributors not only remove the overhead of managing servers, but they also mitigate escalating security threats. Then the resources that were previously dedicated to the daily maintenance of the hardware can be redeployed to focus on strategic initiatives including innovative services that differentiate the business and drive right to the bottom line.
An investment in a cloud ERP solution is the best way to prepare your distribution business for the uncertainty and opportunity that will emerge in this volatile environment. It provides the scalability and agility to respond effectively and be ready for what comes next.