Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) is software used by small and medium organizations, in a variety of industries to manage day-to-day business activities including accounting, CRM, project management, supply chain operations, order processing and more.
ERP software for small and medium businesses began in the 1990s. In recent years ERP software’s functionality and popularity has increased substantially. Cloud-based computing is driving much of this adoption and innovation. ERP software has become a much more versatile and customizable process management tool as it allows users to streamline and organize an entire business’ operations with a single software solution.
Cloud ERP Versus On-Premises
Cloud-based ERP is a Software as a Service (SaaS) that allows users to access Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software over the internet. It is for this reason that it is popular with SMBs – accessibility, adaptability and connectivity are all mainstay features of cloud ERP.
A leading benefit of SaaS is the ability to access programs from anywhere, on any device, at any time. Not only does it ensure tasks can be completed without interruption, but it also facilitates expansion into new markets and regions. In contrast, on-premises ERP requires physical hardware and software to be installed and maintained at central locations. With many companies turning to flexible working models, there is a greater need for accessible, user-friendly ERP systems. This change in work style has been a driving factor in driving demand for cloud-based ERP systems.
The option to integrate multiple departments in real time is another advantage of cloud-based ERP. This allows company personnel to collaborate, communicate and input/collect data – providing a far more efficient and interactive user experience and thus further streamlining your entire operation. Essentially, cloud-based ERP creates a workspace that promotes productivity, saves time and costs, as well as helps optimize business processes while supporting profitability.
In addition to cloud-based ERP offering a more streamlined user experience, it has a lower up-front cost than its on-premises counterpart. As with other SaaS programs, there is no need for resources to be purchased up-front or housed on-site. Cloud ERP is often purchased via a subscription, making it a lot more feasible for smaller businesses as the initial investment is far less.
Cloud-based ERP has a lower up-front cost than its on-premises counterpart.
Cloud ERP eliminates the upfront costs of physical hardware costs and reduces IT support requirements because the vendor handles updates and upgrades.
In addition to cost-savings, cloud-based ERP boasts numerous other benefits, including:
Enhanced Company Security:
As your company data will be stored in the cloud, there is a much lower chance of a malicious attack. This is partly because the software and your data are not stored locally. Finally, with SaaS software you are leveraging common cloud security measures that are constantly being updated to prevent cybercriminals from retrieving company data.
With SaaS ERP software you have a built-in comprehensive backup and disaster recovery plan. Many small and medium businesses have never tested it so only discover after the fact that their backup and disaster recovery plan does not work.
Software is not hosted on your systems, so you do not have to purchase, configure, and upgrade servers. If you need more resources they can be quickly, easily, and seamlessly added (or removed.) If your business expands geographically everything is ready for the new location with no additional expense.
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