With cloud computing on the rise, the days of on-premise software seems like history. Gartner predicts the worldwide public cloud services market will grow 18 percent this year alone, with no signs of stopping. This could easily be because businesses are starting to understand the added value that Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS), and Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) bring to business workflows as far as day-to-day business activity in today’s rapidly changing environment.
The question here is: Are you prepared for the day when your legacy system fails and you have to take on the challenge of transferring your business to a cloud-based platform? Mark Rhyman, an industry leader in the field of cloud Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP), Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and Materials Requirement Planning (MRP), provides four tips for when that day comes.
Tip 1. Be careful when selecting a solution
There are many cloud-based ERP solutions on the market today, but not all of them fit all industries. Selecting the right solution is already a lengthy process that takes time, energy, and money for the implementation. Choosing the right one is extremely important, and there are many business factors to consider before buying or implementing one.
Choosing the wrong system could mean delayed upgrades, costly and unstable integrations, unplanned downtime, poor security, limited support and concerns with working with a third party.
Tip 2. Beware of the”fake cloud”
NetSuite explains, “True cloud vendors design their solutions from the ground up. They code their software to perform better as a fully hosted solution and build talent and expertise around hosting, maintaining, and managing the software across hundreds of servers and across multiple levels of data redundancy in their own multi-tenant cloud environments.”
With “true cloud,” customers are able to get instant access to product upgrades and are allowed to customize the platform without the pain of reimplementing them every time. According to Rhyman, “fake cloud” vendors typically do not host, manage, or maintain the business solutions. Instead, they turn responsibility over a service provider.
Tip 3. Train your employees
Keep your team informed and engaged with the new ERP system. Kick off the new system with training sessions so you can avoid user issues in the future. Assuring your staff that they will be properly training for the challenges ahead and that there will be a support system in place can go a long way. People tend to get comfortable with their tools, so the idea of change alone can make some employees uncomfortable for the fear of learning and entirely new system. Rhyman suggests getting department heads engaged to be early adopters and broadcast the message to their teams, or maybe appoint a dedicated resource on your staff to as as a project manager.
Tip 4. Carefully plan your deployment
“I’ve seen several business owners who were not able to establish proper cut-off dates, even though the system was ready to go live. There were multiple internal push backs out of the fear of going live,” Rhyman said.
The idea of getting the deployment method perfect the first time is a total misconception. It’s okay if you have to try a few times until you get it right. We all know, practice makes perfect! Having a plan for deployment ahead of time will help your organization to avoid any systematic errors in the future.
Looking for more information about ERP systems? Download our free buyers guide, where you can find the top ERP software vendors, snippets about their highest ranking ERP solutions and products, plus the top 10 questions and tips to ask yourself and software vendor before purchasing!
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