A lot has been written about ERP solutions and of course Oracle Cloud is a big player in that industry.
However, for small/medium enterprises (SME), an Oracle applications solution has always been seen as using a sledgehammer to crack a nut, much too expensive and unwieldy to be taken seriously. But have things changed with the advent of ERP Cloud?
To a large extent, Yes. Those companies running Sage, Exchequer, Open Accounts, MS and others are now looking at the Oracle SaaS offering as a real viable alternative. So what has actually changed so dramatically as to make this a reality?
Flexible system for organisational growth – I’m not going to lie to you and say if you’re on any of the so called smaller systems and nothing is changing in your business world then Oracle ERP is for you, at this point it’s unlikely you’ll need to move and the drivers just aren’t there to warrant it. However, if your current system is starting to creak, and your business is growing, Oracle ERP Cloud is a viable place to go. The fact you only pay for what you use makes it enticing, and the system can grow exponentially with your business with minimum change from your side. You keep concentrating on doing what you do best and let Oracle and your system integrator manage the rest for you, month on month, year on year service and support. We are talking to a number of organisations who are in this position currently, they are outgrowing what they have and now need to know where to go next, and Oracle is a leading option.
Functionality – you can now get (98%) all the great functionality of Oracle’s previous versions in the Cloud Release (12), with best practise processes built in. This means you can be seamlessly processing in a very short space of time, with minimal fuss for your organisation. Other solutions are not so functionally rich, but clearly get the basics right else they wouldn’t be in the market they are in. However, it is good due diligence to compare the functional areas so you know exactly what you are getting for your money. Don’t just accept that it does it; how does it do it? When data is saved in one place, is it immediately available in another or do I need to run a process or program to get it there? This is where your users really get value particularly where there is high transactional throughput, although waiting for data to get from one place to another is annoying no matter how many transactions you process.
Implementation Costs – Not only are there good deals to be had with Oracle in regard to monthly subscription costs, integrators are also offering quick to market solutions. At Namos we provide Fixed Service Offerings to ERP Cloud adopters, which not only means you can be up and running within 12 weeks, but we work with you to ensure it’s still tailored and configured to meet your processing requirements albeit within the boundaries of the product. So, best of breed processing – your way. This significantly brings down your implementation costs, and also means as the change management time-frames dwindle, users can see a new improved system is very much on the way, not somewhere long over the horizon, making buy-in easier and reaping the rewards quicker.
Real-time reporting – once you’re up and running, reporting is available immediately via dashboards, so no need for time consuming data warehousing, and it’s from a single source of the truth. This has had a massive effect on the market as there are many reporting solutions such as the old Crystal and Cognos ones that span multiple systems and sources but aren’t all pre-built in with the data itself. Pushing data through the Oracle solution means getting data out of the Oracle solution – it sounds simple and now it is. No need to print; all users (depending on their security settings) can access the data when they need it – self service at its absolute best. Again, as your organisation grows and you may choose to add Planning & Budgeting, Projects, HCM and Payroll or CX to your Oracle portfolio, the reporting solution remains the same across all the modules as the data links through each piece. This provides continuity for all users and subsequently reduces training costs.
Of course there are a multitude of factors that are taken in consideration when purchasing an ERP solution, but I suppose the message here is this;
Don’t write off Oracle ERP Cloud as being too expensive and convoluted for your needs. You will be pleasantly surprised with exactly how much you can get for your budget, and so nobody will think you’re off your NUT by seeing it as a real alternative to your current solution.
Please contact the team should you like to discuss your organisation’s needs.