The process of implementing Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software is easier for some companies than others. There are many paths to the same end goal and many different customizations that exist, often making the implementation process rife with pitfalls and problems that could result in the software failing to return its proposed or expected value.
Knowing this, we’ve spent the last few months on your options and the early stages of the ERP decision process but would today like to share with you a recent report exploring advice on best practices as discussed by your peers.
IDC Report Reveals Cloud Software Implementation Secrets and Advice
Just a few short years ago, the cloud was the new kid on the block. Largely untested in 2007, the market changed over the past decade to an environment in which the value of the cloud has not only been proven, but in which the cloud has become the de facto option for businesses.
IDC PeerScape: Practices for Implementing SaaS and Cloud Services
Knowing this, as more businesses opt to head to the cloud, it’s important to know the differences that exist, and the best practices you should follow if you hope to make the most out of cloud ERP. To address this, the team at IDC, a leading analyst firm specializing in technology, recently released a guide for companies like you who are in the process of looking at ERP.
The report, part of their PeerScape series, hopes to provide readers with a few tools they can use when deciding on, implementing, and operating cloud software:
“This IDC study offers advice to chief information officers (CIOs) and other business executives based on best practices end users should employ when implementing enterprise SaaS and cloud-enabled software. It also includes considerations for vendor selection as well as post-implementation practices. Recently, IDC conducted 60+ interviews with line-of-business and IT buyers to discover the current reality of SaaS and cloud-enabled implementations.”
Discussing three top challenges and opportunities, the report highlights other tips for making a smart decision, including the importance of a vendor and implementation partner, how to make an airtight case to naysayers and decision makers, and why it’s so important that your company maintains control during the update process. Download the report here or read more below.
Three Things to Consider When Looking at Cloud Software
1) Treat the Cloud as Your Path to Transformation, Choose a Partner Who Will Get You There
Long before the cloud era, products were sold in this format as a way to cut costs. However, this changed when both customers and vendors realized the agility and functionality that SaaS and cloud-enabled technology can deliver. This marked a change from cost cutting to business growth, and any decision to move to the cloud should be treated as such.
To that end, implementing SaaS and cloud-enabled technology should be part of a wider business project, but without a wider enterprise transformation plan, SaaS and cloud enabled technology will become a new “island of innovation.” It will deliver some value, but it won’t live up to its full promise.
2) Cloud Implementation Requires Cloud-Focused Testing Methods
During your move to the cloud, you will realize that you fact some of the same challenges as an on-premises deployment. From integration, testing, and training to change management, a lot of the processes may feel familiar, but the only difference is that they will happen much more frequently—four times per year in some cases.
To successfully embrace the cloud, you need to plan for software testing related to each new SaaS release and be aware that you may need to make a significant effort in configuring the SaaS and cloud applications to your specifications.
3) It’s More Than a Journey ‘to’ the Cloud
When many organizations think of a cloud implementation, they often think of it as a static, one-time journey. Too often, issues arise from the fact that your SaaS and cloud-enabled packages do not work in isolation and will likely come with several software updates every year; it can take a while to understand how new SaaS or cloud solutions interact with other applications, deployments, or databases.
This is a fundamental challenge for companies just starting their cloud journey—many fail to stay on top of the continuous changes that present themselves. With this in mind, one of the most important things an organization needs to do is to understand the updates, plan for them, and maintain control before, during, and after each.
Advance with Axiology
Many organizations have made the move ‘to’ the cloud, but constant maintenance before, during, and after an ERP implementation is your key to success. At Axiology, we have helped firms just like yours to complete an implementation and make the most of their software. We again invite you to download the IDC PeerScape Guide, get to know more about Acumatica, and contact us for more information.