Finance, both as an industry and as a department within businesses, has been slow to move to the cloud. This piece continues our discussion (see Part 1) of what’s holding financial pros back and why it’s worth it to make the transition.
- 15 Reasons Cloud Makes Sense for Finance Departments (cont.)
- Lower Your Risk with a Slower Transition
15 Reasons Cloud Makes Sense for Finance Departments (cont.)
- International readiness – If you plan to find customers and otherwise operate in other countries, finances will become more sophisticated, as will compliance. That means you have to keep updating your current system. Cloud systems are updated on-the-go, by the cloud provider.
- Smoother M & A – Computing is the most expensive part of merging with or acquiring another company. On the other hand, it can create points of integration as well. “The heavy reliance on ERP for business operations, management information, and financial reporting make it a priority item in the M&A agenda,” explains Forbes.
- Testing a different market – When you go into a different market, you find a different type of customer. Cloud allows you to easily customize the back-end support to meet diverse needs.
- Hypergrowth – When you are growing incredibly fast, as occurs during the hypergrowth phase of startups, you need your system to be able to scale with you. That’s cloud. It also allows you to more efficiently use your resources for peaks and valleys.
- IPO – Are you about to become publicly traded? If you choose a strong cloud provider, they will have all the parameters in place to be compliant with financial regulations.
RELATED: At Superb Internet, in order to meet the needs of our customers, we must prove to them that our systems are transparent, highly secure, and multiply redundant. That’s why all our cloud systems meet international standards such as SSAE 16 and ISO 27001. See our full list of compliance and security certifications.
Efficient Use of Resources
- Divisional planning – To get back to the issue of standardization, what about divisional offices or subsidiaries that aren’t running the same ERP? “This disrupts the flow of data and necessitates manual workarounds such as spreadsheets,” notes Forbes. “Consolidating on the cloud can provide a single view of operations without the cost and lengthy implementations that inhibit on-premises ERP.”
- Skipping upgrades – Upgrading ERP systems is costly and can be a huge undertaking. You can transition to cloud faster and more affordably.
- Sharing services – Many organizations want to look for ways to simplify and streamline by unifying tasks that are unnecessarily performed through multiple departments. It’s much easier to achieve pain-free shared services via cloud, which is essentially designed for collaboration.
- No on-site server or data center costs – Often businesses have to get more sophisticated accounting programs as they expand. These firms set up their enterprise resource planning as a cloud service so they don’t have to buy equipment and hire IT support staff.
- Standardization throughout the company – If you have more than one ERP system in place now, cloud allows you to consolidate within an environment that is built to meet strict compliance guidelines.
- Safer operations – Many people in financial departments are so concerned about the idea of someone else hosting their data that they don’t move to cloud. Ironically, though, cloud is typically the safest possible hands – especially because the providers are so obsessed with security for the sake of their own credibility. “The cloud providers are much better at systemic security services, such as looking out for attacks using pattern matching technology and even AI systems,” says David Linthicum of InfoWorld. “This combination means they have very secure systems.”
Lower Your Risk with a Slower Transition
There are fifteen basic reasons why cloud could be a great choice for any finance department. However, people are still standing their ground. Finance is mission-critical. Errors can become systemic. Finance executives sometimes decide not to go to the cloud to avoid huge headaches.
Keep in mind, cloud is by no means an “all or nothing” proposition. You can switch over your finances in smaller pieces if you want to test the waters. Some organizations that have an international presence now have the finances of one of their global offices in the cloud as they decide on the full organization. Some firms just decide that they want to have their primary ERP software hosted on-site. Those companies “can move some independent finance applications to the cloud, such as planning and budgeting, narrative reporting, financial reporting compliance, and more,” says Forbes.
If you do decide to switch everything over, it won’t take as long as it does to replace the on-site system. The entire process can often be completed in 10 weeks.
Given all the above information, does waiting to move to the cloud really make sense for finance departments? We think not.