articlesBY HT BRAND STUDIO |DEC 5, 2018

Cloud ERP helps to not just automate day-to-day tasks like accounting and customer relations, but also drive operational efficiencies.

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Running a business is hard. However, scaling it up can be a whole new ball game. From logistics to hiring to production, the challenges of expanding your business can be never-ending. Without effective systems in place, you may start losing money, time, and ultimately, customers.

The trouble is, when you are a growing business, you don’t know that you need to have these systems in place until it's too late.

Businesses are not immune to growth pains. However, for some founders and executives, the first response to this is to either push themselves harder or get more manpower on board. This is especially the case in small and medium businesses, where money is tight and there is not much room for trial and error.


In such a case, one needs to sit back and formulate a long-term strategy

Instead of jumping headfirst into a software solution which serves your needs today, one should always consider its broader business value.

This is why more and more organizations are embracing cloud ERP. Not just to automate day-to-day tasks, such as accounting and customer relations, but to also drive operational efficiencies and handle the shifting market realities of scaling up.

So, what criteria should you consider when determining cloud ERP software? Read on to know!

1) Adopting the latest applications

For smooth operations, human resources and management need to be seamlessly integrated. To do this, your software needs to be compatible with many of the current technology megatrends, including hyper-connectivity, Internet of Things, and data analytics.

This is where the advantage of cloud ERP shines through. Instead of trying to retrofit the latest technologies into legacy systems and facing endless upgrade costs, you can simply update your cloud ERP software, which will give you access to these new features at a minimal cost.

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2) A robust cloud

Running data centres and around-the-clock IT teams is expensive. More importantly, there is always a chance of downtime with centralized operations. This can affect sales, and bring operations to a grinding halt.

However, if your business operations are run on the cloud, it will not only reduce chances of failure, but also give you access to backup versions of your data and programmes.

So, while choosing cloud-based software, be sure to pick a developer who not just charges the lowest, but also has a good track record of reliability.

3) A single source of the truth

The quality of your business decisions will rely heavily on the quality of your data. This data is nothing but the primary information about your customers and productions and how it is captured and relayed. Small and mid-market companies usually store their sales, expenses, and customer data in separate databases. Not only does this create confusion for managers and employees, but also affect the company’s chance of getting credit from banks.

This is one of the primary concerns of executives who are looking at enterprise planning software. Growing businesses deal with new data every day. Over time, this data can be mined for patterns and trends which can drive growth. For accurate insights, it is important to have a single source of data.

4) Security

Most of your company data is sensitive. During daily operations, this data is distributed across various IT systems. Hence, companies need to put security checks and firewalls in place to protect themselves from risks such as information loss, unauthorized access, and data manipulation.

However, cybersecurity can be a costly affair, draining the already-limited resources of a company due to the rising number and variety of breaches and cyber attacks. In case of a security threat, ERP systems like S/4HANA Cloud will be better prepared to ward it off, as the software is used by companies worldwide and will have the backing of SAP’s battery of engineers and a strong ecosystem of partners.

5) Constant upgrades

Cloud ERP provides seamless, secure upgrades to match your business needs. This significantly reduces the amount of redundancy and add-on capacity needed to support your business strategy. Further, it allows your business to expand.

It is common for customized on-premise enterprise software to have not seen an upgrade in years. By contrast, cloud ERP can update multiple times every year, thereby providing immediate access to new capabilities based on the latest technologies, improving business agility and accelerating the time to value; and, all this for just the usual monthly subscription fee.

Truly realizing the value of your business takes not just good work ethics and a strong team, but also critical thinking. This means taking the time to do the mental work that goes into finding lasting solutions to problems.

It is easy to put off hard decisions as long as they don’t hamper your business. However, dodging problems carries a price tag. Not only will you keep repeating mistakes, but also hamper your chances of growth in the long run. By opting for cloud ERP, you will have the most effective core business processes in place, and be able adapt faster.

Most importantly, once you are able to analyze your past performance in context and understand the factors that influenced the best or worst results, you can discover the key to growth.

Request a personal demo of intelligent, cloud-based ERP software from SAP.

The above content has not been created by any Mint journalist or editorial teams