The Truth About Cloud ERP
Cloud computing has been one of the most transformative developments in enterprise technology. Businesses no longer have to deploy ERP on expensive servers; they can lower costs and speed up implementation projects by hosting their ERP in the cloud. Furthermore, the cloud supports mobility, real-time visibility and digital innovation to help companies improve efficiency and stay ahead of the competition.
The cloud isn’t the most recent advancement in ERP software, and 73% of businesses currently have at least one application already in the cloud. However, the cloud still has its fair share of naysayers, particularly among manufacturers and distributors that have hosted their ERP system in house for several years. Myths about the risks of cloud ERP have convinced these businesses to keep their software on site.
But as the cloud becomes the standard for ERP deployments, companies that stick to on-premises solutions could start falling behind. Below, we refute common misconceptions to give you the truth about cloud ERP.
The two prevalent myths about cloud security are diametrically opposed. While some fear their sensitive information and valuable IT investments are in danger in the cloud, others view cloud software as a safe haven for their data. The truth lies somewhere in the middle.
Concerns about cloud security have been around since cloud computing became a mainstay in enterprise technology in recent years. Businesses were weary of trusting cloud providers with their data. But for most organizations, information is actually safer in the cloud. Providers such as Microsoft Azure enforce high security standards and offer 24/7 support to protect applications. Azure includes geo-redundant disaster recovery and complies with a large range of regulations and standards. Additionally, it offers a service level agreement (SLA) of 99.95%, guaranteeing minimal downtime. The average manufacturer or distributor can’t uphold this level of security on their own.
However, this doesn’t mean that your data’s safety is completely in the hands of your provider. Security responsibilities are shared between your cloud provider and your organization. While the cloud considerably lessens the work required to protect your solution, there are still certain measures you should take. You want to do your research to ensure your cloud platform meets all your security requirements. As you research cloud hosting options, ask vendors about their security measures, backup frequency, encryption methods and other critical factors.
You should also consider investing in a backup and disaster recovery solution. Cloud providers don’t specialize in data restoration. A disaster recovery solution backs up files more frequently and stores copies of data both locally and online to help businesses resume operations in no time. Think of backup and disaster recovery systems as insurance for your vital information and software.
Trusting an outside party to host your ERP solution doesn’t just raise concerns about security. No organization wants to lose power over their technology, data and processes. Fortunately, businesses don’t have to worry about relinquishing control to the cloud. In fact, companies can enjoy greater flexibility when they deploy their software off site.
Leading cloud platforms support unlimited customizability. Microsoft Azure users can tailor their solution to their specific needs, maintain their familiar workflows and integrate applications without extensive coding. Azure is also at the forefront of technological innovations such as AI and IoT, enabling businesses to capitalize on cutting-edge features to drive continuous improvement. Furthermore, cloud solutions offer easy scalability. Instead of investing heavily in on-premises hardware and servers as you grow, you can simply change your cloud subscription to support new users and locations.
Businesses also want to maintain control over their upgrade schedule. ERP vendors that offer software as a service (SaaS) cloud hosting often lock customers into their release cycle, but this isn’t the only option for organizations. When you host ERP software in the cloud through a third party, you can upgrade at your own pace. This is becoming increasingly important as software vendors implement more aggressive release timelines. Instead of upgrading multiple times a year, you can adopt an easier schedule for your business.
We all know that people tend to gravitate to the cloud because of the low upfront costs. The major expense of hardware and servers used to deter small to midsize businesses from ERP implementations. With the cloud, you don’t have to worry about hardware, simplifying IT projects and drastically reducing installation costs. But many companies continue to avoid the cloud because of the perceived long-term costs. Most cloud providers require monthly subscription costs which increase as you add users. As a result, organizations fear that total cost of ownership (TCO) is higher for the cloud than on-premises deployments.
Though cloud ERP might appear to be more expensive in the long term, when estimating TCO as well as ROI, it’s critical to look outside installation costs and subscription plans. Hardware isn’t just tricky to implement; it can also be a challenge to upgrade and maintain. The work, costs and risks associated with hardware upkeep is often overwhelming for a manufacturer or distributor. Plus, adding new users, locations and features for your on-premises applications can be a complex and expensive endeavor. The cloud also opens the door to exciting features and capabilities that can add value to your enterprise. Cloud ERP entails fewer risks and challenges than on-site software, making it a more affordable option for most organizations.
Cloud computing offers a range of advantages, including simplified implementations and management. However, you still shouldn’t implement cloud ERP or migrate off your on-premises solution without the help of a premier consulting firm.
An Epicor Gold Partner, Datix has been an expert in all things ERP for over 20 years. When you team up with Datix to host Epicor ERP in the Microsoft Azure cloud, you can upgrade on your schedule and enjoy full support from our certified consultants. Additionally, with EverSafe!, our comprehensive backup and disaster recovery solution, you can further protect your cloud or on-premises software to minimize downtime and safeguard your investment.
Don’t fear the cloud. Contact Datix to learn how you can enjoy lower costs and greater performance with cloud ERP!