The shift toward cloud ERP: Top business advantages


iStock_000035737630_XXXLargeWithin the last few years, there has been a massive shift toward cloud-based business management systems. There are considerable advantages to transitioning from an on-premise environment to one accessed solely via the Web, especially when it comes to enterprise resource planning. 

According to a recent CIO survey, 80 percent of companies noted that ERP systems were crucial to their businesses processes. Furthermore, more than half - 64 percent - reported a preference toward cloud-based ERP solutions. In fact, only one in five respondents said they had plans to continue investing in on-premise ERP. Gartner research supports these findings, noting that almost half of all businesses plan to migrate their ERP platform to the cloud in the next five years, Enterprise Apps Today reported.

So what's driving this shift from on-premise to the cloud, where ERP systems are concerned? Businesses that utilize a cloud ERP solution have reaped numerous benefits, including:

Providing opportunities for companies with limited resources

Cloud ERP systems have offered considerable opportunities for businesses, particularly those that may have previously viewed traditional platforms as too expensive or too complex to install.

"Cloud solutions are generally implemented more quickly than on-premise solutions," wrote Aberdeen Group research analyst Nick Castellina. "Additionally, with a cloud ERP solution, you don't need the internal IT support that you normally would with a traditional on-premise model."

This also frees up the internal IT team to deal with other mission-critical aspects of the business. Instead of focusing on installing and maintaining the on-premise system, the vendor provides this necessary support.

Reduced ownership costs

NetSuite pointed out that cloud ERP systems provide considerably reduced ownership costs when compared with on-premise architectures. Instead of having to make significant initial and ongoing investments, cloud ERP resources are provided through the service vendor. This translates to a much lower ownership cost over the lifecycle of the system.

"The cloud ERP provider hosts and maintains all of the IT infrastructure for you, ensures the system is always running, that the data is secure and that product enhancements are rolled out painlessly to your solution without breaking your previously implemented customizations," NetSuite noted.

Anywhere, anytime access

One of the most attractive benefits of a cloud ERP solution is the fact that administrators and staffers can access the system from any location with an Internet connection at any time. In this way, even if employees are traveling, working from home or operating from another location outside of the office, their ERP resources are continually available to them. This is a major advantage, as it can provide boosted productivity and efficiency throughout the company.

Learn how industry-leading companies are leveraging their ERP in the cloud for growth and follow the conversation on Twitter with the hashtag #ERP: