ERPs generally operate like well-oiled machines, automating and accelerating business management processes. However, as your business grows and requirements change, you may need to make changes to your ERP system to reflect that. That’s where an innovation like the best cloud ERP software comes in.
Perhaps your legacy system limits your scalability, which impacts expansion efforts. Or you’re looking for a new ERP system because your existing software no longer addresses your needs.
Considering that over 50% of companies will soon implement new ERP systems, they need to be able to do so reliably while avoiding protracted downtime.
The need for cloud-based ERP is evident as it addresses the issues above and many others facing businesses with legacy ERPs.
The next step is to find the best cloud ERP system whose functions align with your needs. This article will explore some of the best cloud-based ERP systems in the industry to help inform your decision making.
1. Oracle ERP Cloud
Here are the key features of Oracle ERP Cloud:
- Financial analysis
- Order management
- Business management
- Risk management
- Supply chain and inventory management
- Project management
- Product lifecycle
- And more
From a financial management perspective, Oracle encompasses a range of general ledgers, accounting standards, currencies, and entities that allow you to expand beyond geographic regions for better scalability.
Powered by the Oracle Financials Cloud, a scalable, integrated, and fully-featured framework, this ERP system produces accurate data to support financial reporting.
Adopting this ERP system into your organization enables you to make decisions that boost performance without being disrupted by disorganized data.
Oracle ERP Cloud is also industry-agnostic, as it is currently being used and trusted by over 19,000 customers, with over 4,000 in North America alone.
Oracle ERP Cloud offers ERP solutions that are great for specific industries such as:
- Consumer goods
- Education and research
- Financial services
- Food and beverage
- High tech
- Industrial manufacturing
- Life sciences
- Media and entertainment
- Public sector
- And more
Although the main criticisms of the Oracle ERP Cloud involve misalignment between existing business processes and new technology, businesses can quickly mitigate this problem by trusting the right ERP consulting firm with implementation.
2. Oracle NetSuite
Oracle NetSuite is one of the most comprehensive enterprise resource planning (ERP) platforms available, providing organizations with simplified scalability.
It includes the necessary tools for managing crucial business processes, such as:
- Financial management
- And more
NetSuite enables cloud-based financial management, which expedites:
- Order management
- Stock management
- Supply chain management
NetSuite’s management CRM software offers a 360-degree view of your customers that covers:
- Upsell to cross-sell
- Lead to opportunity
- Sales orders management
This feature enables more cohesive information flow throughout the customer lifecycle, and thus a more productive sales process.
NetSuite’s ERP solutions are also great for specific industries, such as:
- Professional services
- Discrete manufacturing
- Retail and e-commerce
- Software and technology
- Advertising, media and publishing (AMP)
NetSuite is a hosted application, meaning you pay an annual subscription fee for each month you use it. The maintenance cost increases alongside the number of users and accounts.
The base price is billed monthly at $999, with additional costs of $99 per user per month. However, the rising costs can easily deter smaller organizations from adopting NetSuite as their ERP system.
The steadily increasing costs do not present a substantial disadvantage for larger organizations with considerable budgets. However for a growing business, this can result in dramatic shifts in month-to-month costs.
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SAP gives you access to various tools that have an easy-to-use user interface. Although SAP’s software takes some time and patience to understand, it is relatively straightforward compared to other ERPs.
Post-implementation, onboarding users will be much easier because all of the modules are accessible through a single web-based interface.
This software is a good match for larger organizations since enterprises are the intended targets of SAP’s product line. The Enterprise Planner and list of ERP integrations provide an excellent choice for corporations that process large quantities of data and have abundant human resources.
SAP’s ERP solutions are great for specific industries, such as:
- Life sciences
- Business services
- Technical services
The primary disadvantage is the price. SAP licensing can be expensive, as the license costs can be around $50,000 annually.
In addition, the implementation process can be lengthy due to the difficulties in integrating with non-SAP environments. As a result, some users reported lower morale within their organizations, resulting in lower adoption.
Established in 2008, Acumatica is a relatively new player in the cloud ERP industry. Over time, it has grown to become one of the best cloud ERP for small businesses and medium-sized businesses.
One distinct advantage of Acumatica compared to other ERP systems is its flexibility. Customers can purchase the software like a subscription service so they can avoid managing bulky servers.
You also have the option to set the system up on your servers or choose third-party hosting if you operate in a highly regulated industry or the software as a service (SaaS) subscription model does not align with your needs.
Acumatica offers ERP solutions that are great for specific industries such as:
- Service Industries
- Retail and e-commerce
The downside of such a flexible pricing structure is that it can be confusing due to the multiple levels of features.
Another disadvantage of Acumatica is that it is relatively new to the market. Despite being available since 2008, Acumatica is still a relatively new player in the ERP market.
However, some consider Acumatica’s brief history as a strength. They became one of the best cloud ERP software providers with their unique non-user-based pricing model.
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Avoiding Misalignment With Your ERP System
Understanding the pros and cons of all the best cloud ERP systems and choosing one of them is only the first step of making an informed decision about ERP implementation for your business.
The next step is developing a comprehensive strategy that ensures successful implementation. The most significant issue users face is the misalignment between their business goals and the new ERP systems.
Misalignment usually occurs because there is a lack of internal expertise to customize ERP systems to manage business processes. As a result, businesses lack the empowerment to implement the necessary software platforms for their business functions.
Here are a few examples of ERP misalignment:
- Businesses without an existing ERP system lack implementation expertise and fail to gain the confidence of decision-makers and influential members.
- Businesses have existing ERP systems making uncalculated mistakes when rolling out the system to new locations, sites, countries, warehouses, or other business divisions.
- Businesses that already implemented ERP systems lack operational IT support to ensure their continuity between ERP, business processes, and organizational goals.
If your business’s situation matches any of the above three scenarios, selecting the right ERP system is your secondary concern.
Instead, you need to partner with an ERP consulting firm that can determine the right ERP system for your particular industry, current goals, and processes. The firm can also customize the software to meet unique operational needs.
The fact is, you have two options:
- You could either spend time determining the pros and cons of all the different ERP systems, compare them with your business requirements, and choose a vendor without having a complete understanding of the ERP industry
- You could collaborate with a reputable ERP consulting firm that possesses at least a decade of implementation experience so you can rest assured that you are selecting the best cloud ERP systems
Working with an ERP consultancy helps you streamline the implementation process – something that can be complicated and drain resources and time when not done correctly.
Which Industries Benefit Most From Partnering With ERP Consultants?
ERP consulting firms are generally industry-agnostic and can assist a wide range of clients. However, some industries may rely on them more than others because of their industry’s complexity and the higher need for external expertise.
- Pharmaceutical: The consultants ensure your implementation and rollout comply with industry standards and follow GMP (Good Manufacturing Practices) as per the FDA.
- Technology: Faced with shorter time-to-market and high obsolescence, partnering with ERP consultants ensures processes are aligned with these factors to avoid potential roadblocks.
- Medical devices: Investing in ERP support is crucial for medical device manufacturers, as they must maintain various aspects of the devices they produce for their clients.
Your Reliable ERP Cloud Partner
Finding the right cloud ERP partner is as important as the partnership itself. An ERP consultancy that lacks the expertise of the cloud ERP system you want to implement provides little benefit to your business.
With over 500 successful ERP implementations and counting, NexInfo’s experienced ERP consultants can complete your ERP integration in as little as six weeks.