Think of all the reasons your business hasn’t moved to the cloud. Too difficult? Too costly? Too risky? Every industry has pockets of cautious executives who have yet to hitch their wagons to innovative concepts like cloud-based solutions, believing the risks still outweigh the benefits. Sticking with an on-premise solution may feel like an option free of risk, but that decision may slow down your company’s progress. It’s time to further investigate your reasons for holding back.
Externally, many innovative, technological breakthroughs are happening across most industries, but internally, this innovative attitude does not always exist within the IT departments. In fact, some of the most technologically advanced products and services are manufactured and delivered using, ironically, outdated IT systems. Several benchmark statistics claim IT still overly relies on manual processes and the utilization of ERP systems that are anywhere from 7 to 15 years old. But that’s not all; this technology disparity spills over into the deployment method as well.
Now, because the manufacturing industry is amid major disruptions (i.e. industry 4.0, COVID, work-from-home, etc.), a new emphasis on infrastructure and cost control is driving many decisions, including deployment options. Harsh budget cuts are forcing manufacturers, suppliers and contractors to reassess their entire IT infrastructure, looking for ways to control costs, limit spending yet still provide the system access and capabilities required to run the business. Often, they overlook the idea that investing in a cloud-based ERP system could, in fact, provide more flexibility and be the easiest and most cost-efficient decision in the long run.
Probably not. The cost savings that comes with cloud solutions, as well as the predictability of the operating expense versus the capital expense, is gaining the attention of cash-strapped companies, especially those who need to upgrade or maintain their systems but don’t have the money for a major investment. Given our challenging economic state, making or securing huge initial investments in equipment up front may not be the wisest course. In lieu of making these large capital investments, companies are pursuing innovative business models that cloud-based solutions can deliver, such as variable subscription pricing (or pay-as-you-go user licenses) and agile implementation cycles. Given the current economic climate, investing in smaller chunks over longer periods of time seems the wiser course, a course that cloud computing can help chart.
Many organizations worry over how to secure valuable data, such as propriety specification of exclusive technology and FDA-regulated products. A data breach is one of the top five fears most companies name when switching over to cloud-based solutions, but cloud providers have quelled these fears by providing the most secure and strict technology solutions to protect data—even better than the company can with their current on-premise deployments.
What’s to gain?
The better question to ask is, are you leading the charge and embracing new opportunities or trailing behind with a wait-and-see outlook? Cloud deployment offers companies the opportunity to reevaluate their approach to operations, workflows, and information sharing. Moving to the cloud is cost-efficient, safe and effective. And given the right training and support, the cloud can even be easier. Where does your company sit in this continuously evolving spectrum of implementation and disruptive technologies, including cloud deployment of your ERP solution? If you’re still on the sidelines, are you ready to jump in? If you still feel it’s too risky to commit to the cloud, perhaps “the policy of being too cautious is the greatest risk of all.”1
The Copley Consulting Group can help. We have more than 30 years of experience helping manufacturers, suppliers, and contractors transform their businesses. Contact us to get started on your cloud deployment.