Thinking of migrating your ERP to the cloud? You’re not alone. A study found that 80% of budgets will be committed to cloud solutions over the next year. While the idea of moving functions to the cloud certainly sounds appealing, many businesses find that they don’t know exactly what they are looking for in a cloud solution. And we can understand why.
It’s easy to get lost in the technical jargon that surrounds cloud technology and ERP software and far too many businesses focus on technological criteria when choosing software. While the technical components may be important, they shouldn’t be the primary focus. The truth is that technology changes all the time. A provider that offers the best technological features today could be out-of-date tomorrow. Instead of focusing on technology in the search for a cloud software provider, businesses should instead look at the ERP implementation approach. How a provider approaches software development can tell you a lot about how that provider may fit your needs.
Nearly every large-scale technology project encounters roadblocks at some point in the process. The scope may change and your processes may adjust. You could decide that your needs are different than what you had anticipated. The budget or time frame could change. A provider who uses an agile methodology for software development will be in a better position to deal with those unexpected changes and to tailor the end result to meet your changing needs.
The agile method breaks projects into smaller stages, allowing the development team to focus on incremental pieces. First, the provider gets your approval at the completion of each stage, rather than at the end of the project. That means you can approve sections of development as they are completed. This provides tremendous flexibility for your organization. If you decide to make a slight change halfway through the project, that still will not impact the remaining work since the work has been divided into independent segments. Since cloud ERP solutions like NetSuite can take several months to configure, your organization may have made changes to your core processes and these modifications can be easily fit into your implementation when your provider uses an agile approach.
Second, when using an ERP vendor who uses an agile approach, all testing is done concurrently while the work is taking place. In projects that don’t adhere to the agile methodology, the testing may happen after the project is complete. That means more hours must be spent after the software is already delivered.
Finally, since ERP providers who use the agile methodology test while developing, they are able to fix bugs and kinks on the fly. This reduces the probability of an unexpected glitch happening after the software was already supposed to go live.
If you are considering moving to the cloud, you have made a good decision. The next step is finding the right provider. Technology is important, but don’t start there. Start with the approach. You want an ERP provider who can change and evolve with you and your business’s needs.
If and when you are ready for a strategy assessment for migrating your business to a cloud platform, 360 Cloud Solutions can help! We are a 5-star NetSuite Solution Provider and have helped hundreds of companies implement growth-enabling technology and processes.