If this year has proven anything, it is that businesses need to seriously consider their “cloud strategy.” By cloud strategy, we don’t mean enabling Zoom meetings and Google docs. A true strategy encompasses business applications ranging from ERP to CRM to office productivity to business continuity to relocating digital assets.
Pre-pandemic, in April 2019, Gartner predicted that by 2022, 70% of organizations will have a cloud strategy and 30% of new software investments will shift to the cloud. It’s likely in today’s climate, those numbers would be even higher. Yet even with the experience of this year, organizations are still hesitating to move key legacy software, such as ERP, to the cloud. Unfortunately, these solutions are often taken for granted and can go untouched for years.
What are legacy, on-premise systems, such as your ERP costing you?
Your current, on-premise legacy systems could be holding your business back, and you may not even realize it. The costs of maintaining outdated systems can consume a big part of your IT budget, up to 70% according to some estimates, leaving little room for innovation or modernization. Further, if your company has cobbled-together point solutions that are not integrated, then you are faced with having your employees work in isolated silos and using manual processes for work that your systems should be doing.
Outdated technology forces you to work within its constraints instead of what’s best for the business. This can lead to a host of other issues including the inability to scale quickly and make changes in real time as well as failure to capitalize on new opportunities such as artificial intelligence or the Internet of Things. What’s more, when your systems are not modernized, you miss out on sales opportunities, losing deals to competitors with more effective technologies that deliver a better customer experience. Your reputation can even be affected and erode your market share due to products and services that are inferior to the competition.
Three approaches for getting to the cloud
When an IT asset turns into a liability, an update or replacement is essential. Yet, organizations must move at a pace that is right for their business. The best way to address the issue of outdated core applications is to be flexible and move in sync with changes in business and market demands while taking advantage of opportunities that may arise out of the blue. The question isn’t if you should make the move, but when and how.
Wherever you are on your commitment to moving to the cloud, here are three ways you can get there:
The COVID-19 pandemic forced many businesses to quickly implement cloud-based office productivity and collaboration, so employees could work remotely. This move may have given organizations a taste for the flexibility and agility gained in the cloud. The good news is that moving other applications, such as ERP or CRM, can happen almost as quickly. According to Angie Carlton, CFO of Vision Care Center, the transition from an on-premise ERP to Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central was fast and easy. “Our partner Velosio made a big difference. They made the implementation of Business Central easy. It flowed really well despite our ambitious timeframe and tight go-live schedule. They helped us meet our implementation milestones and stay on budget,” Carlton said.
If you are ready to move to the cloud, look for a partner with proven rapid upgrade protocols, so you can get up and running as quickly as possible. A key value of the cloud is it’s scalable as you grow.
Lift and Shift (Hosting)
While making the move to the cloud is the right answer, the questions around choosing new solution(s) still looms. There is another option that lets you move existing on-premise solutions to the cloud, called a lift and shift. A lift and shift gives you the benefits of cloud computing while maintaining the same software and interface, so there is no learning curve or change in operations. If your organization has been experiencing the limitations that come with an on-premise solution but are not quite ready to move to a new system, a lift and shift can work for you.
Start a Plan
If you don’t have a formal cloud strategy or at least an informal one, you could be facing some challenging times ahead. But it is not too late to start. It takes planning and execution to get to the cloud and a technology-oriented mindset along with leveraging the right software and technology partners. The team at Velosio is full of cloud experts and evangelists. We deliver fresh ideas and unmatched know-how when it comes to moving business applications to the cloud. With Velosio, you can create a plan that will get you to the cloud at your own pace. Joe Longo, CEO of Velosio, says “you can’t start the journey without taking the first step.” He recommends finding one piece of your business you can move to the cloud and just get started. See what else Joe has to say about moving to the cloud.
Moving to the cloud is an important decision, but in today’s business climate, waiting too long can limit opportunities and growth. The cloud inherently provides the security, mobility, scalability, and affordability that helps organizations operate and compete on a digital front. When you calculate benefits such as increased security, elimination of data silos, and lower total cost of ownership, the value of moving to the cloud becomes clear. With the cloud, businesses can rest assured they are positioned to thrive in the future.
Whatever stage you are in for your digital journey, contact your Velosio CSM to schedule your Cloud Advisory session! Not a Velosio client? Let’s talk Cloud.