When looking into a new ERP for your business, there are a plethora of options. In fact, you even have choices into how you pay for the software. Whether you choose cloud based or on premise versions will depend on a number of factors. Another way of asking is if you would like to own or rent the software.
There are benefits to both of course, and so it can be difficult to decide which option will be most suitable for your particular business model. Do you stick with the traditional or move deeper into the digital age with an online ERP?
Why consider Cloud based solutions?
Cloud based means that you don’t need the facilities to host and back up your data because it is all online and accessible through a web browser. It won’t take any space on your server, and it won’t require any hardware outlays in order to get you started. Instead you can implement the new software straight away, focusing your attention on making sure everyone is fully trained rather than having to wait for installation and setup.
Finance is often a deciding factor when it comes to business equipment. When purchased outright, an upfront software cost in one lump sum can be a big outlay for a business. With Cloud based Sage 200, you pay monthly rather than up front. Essentially you are renting the software, not buying it. Instead of paying one large cost, you will be able to manage your finances more easily with regular smaller invoices.
It’s easy to make adjustments on Sage 200. You have full control over which modules are included, and how many users you need. This means that not only do you not pay for things which you don’t need, but you can also make adjustments easily to suit the natural growth of your business.
Because you can be up and running in a quicker timescale, and it is typically easier to configure, you can see a much faster return on investment than you might with traditional on premise versions.
When you host your own software you will also be responsible for managing security and backup for your data, unless you work with a solutions provider such as Oakley that can take care of it for you. If there is a fire in your building and you don’t have a remote server then it is possible for you to lose vast amounts of information. Sage 200 Online is hosted with Microsoft Azure, and provides security as well as regular backups.
You will also be able to access your ERP from anywhere. If you have several offices in the UK there is no need to buy multiple versions. If your salespeople need access from the road, they will be able to do so easily via their phones, tablets or laptop computers.
Sticking with a traditional solution
If you have a greater amount of cash flow, you might still choose to pay for on premise ERP. In the long term it will be cheaper as you will own rather than rent the software. You can still pay for additional users and functionality with growth, and it is possible for Oakley ERP to host your on premise solution for you. While it takes a bit longer to set up, you have the reassurance of keeping everything in house and knowing exactly who has access to what.
You must also consider that the current version of the Cloud product does not include all the modules that the on premise version does. If you need access to Sage CRM and Business Intelligence you are better off looking at the hosted or on premise version.
If you’re unsure which type of ERP would be more suitable for your business, Contact Oakley on 01268 725005 and we will gladly take you through the options and provide a free Sage 200 Demo.