MIS 2101 Section 701 – Amy Lavin

ERP Comes to the Cloud and (Finally) Smaller Businesses

http://www.cio.com/article/2381419/enterprise-resource-planning/erp-comes-to-the-cloud-and–finally–smaller-businesses.html

I wanted to try and find an article that discussed ERP as a service or “cloud” application that is also an affordable solution for small businesses.  Whenever I think about ERP I think of larger companies, global corporations that have six, seven or even eight figure budgets.   It seems that only recently it makes sense for a small or even medium size business to pursue an ERP solution.

Questions.

1.) At what point does it NOT make sense to implement an ERP solution?

2.) What are some of the advantages/disadvantages of a cloud ERP solution?

3.) How can a ERP solution provider make their cloud ERP solutions better for small business?

 

7 Responses to ERP Comes to the Cloud and (Finally) Smaller Businesses

  • Good article which brings up a lot of points that the textbook overlooks – the small business need for an ERP!

  • 1) It does not make sense to implement an ERP system if none of the employees at the small business are trained well enough in computers to make any use of the system. It also does not make sense to implement the ERP for a very, very small business. If the company is extremely small all of the features that come with an ERP may be unneccessary.

    2.) I think we had a similar question before. The advantages of a cloud ERP is that it can be accessed from anywhere, allowing easy control over all of your data. The disadvatage is the security risk of having a cloud based system, if all of your data is stored in the cloud it is much easier to hack into.

    3.) Make them less technical, possibly provide a “watered down” version of what they would sell to a large corporation. It is unlikely a small business needs a system with the capabilities to track the massive amount of data that a large corporation produces.

  • I think that these schools will adopt the “single process” although they should adopt the “processes as a whole.” The article describes the school campuses as their own little cities and governments which I agree. The process as a whole seems much more simpler and consistency would be an advantage in dealing with business transactions. Financial aid would have a great advantage as far as the processes as a whole because in order to disperse the financial aid, the financial aid office has to make sure the student is qualified to earn the grants and loans they applied for. Meaning academic records have to be accessed to make that assessment. It would be more efficient in the process as a whole, instead of the single process which focuses primarily on one department. But that won’t work in a business such as colleges and universities.

  • If it’s a small business with few employees which usually has no departments within the company, then there probably isn’t necessary for an ERP to be present. If an ERP is used as a cloud based system, information can be vulnerable to being transmitted into a department that it shouldn’t be accessible to or the possibility of being hacked into. If the ERP can be used where the problems prior to the implementation are addressed it would be a lot easier instead of just implementing a brand new plan and applying it to every aspect of the business including the ones that were already efficient.

  • 1) It does not make sense to implement an ERP solution if the cost of the solution exceeds the cost of using a piecemeal system that lacks integration amongst business functions.

    2) The main advantage of a cloud ERP solution is the lower cost compared to that of a non-cloud ERP solution, which will allow for smaller and midsized businesses to take advantage of ERP solutions. The cloud also allows for greater accessibility, which is a watershed for improvements in many business activities. The main disadvantage to the cloud is concern over security because an outside company is now responsible for the safety of data.

    3) A cloud-based ERP system is beneficial to smaller companies because of the lower costs associated with it. Pricing models typically follow a pay-per-transaction model for cloud-based systems. The pay-per-transaction model allows for companies to match the capacity of the ERP system to their current demand, instead of potentially overspending or having an inadequate ERP solution.

  • 1) It does not make sense to implement an ERP system if it is going to increase the expenses at a rate where the company’s revenues cannot cover it, which means drive the company to a deficit.
    2)The advantages is of this system is easier access, since it is a program, so employees can get in easily, and edit data. This obviously improves how the business works. The disadvantages are similar to any Information system, it would be hacking or risk of loss…
    3) It can be beneficial for small businesses by reducing the costs in a long term. Also, it is beneficial since it will help the business grow way faster than without an ERP system. And as mentioned it will allow to meet the demand, so there will never be a shortage, since everything is controlled by the system.

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