CFOs guide to select the right SaaS-Based ERP solution

Feb 27, 2023
Infor | 4 min READ
Many large organizations with extensive on-premise business application architectures for core financial applications have started to actively investigate Cloud solutions' capabilities and determine when they should plan to make the switch. Though the core purpose of CFOs has stayed the same, it is evident that the strategic framework and timetable have added a few more parameters to their role.
Besides managing their conventional financials, budgeting, compliance & risk management, cost containment, and strategic growth responsibilities, CFOs must wear a different hat when selecting the best ERP solution. It becomes crucial in today's hybrid work context, where ERP systems infuse efficiency into teams and enable them to collaborate more seamlessly.
Ravindra Kabbur
Ravindra Kabbur

Sr Solution Architect –



The transition to SaaS-based ERP
Over a while, SaaS-based ERP has become a default option for finance in small and mid-sized businesses. The transition has brought down the costs, primarily because the solution gives the luxury of more configuration capabilities and support resources. Some organizations still use a mixed model (an on-premises legacy application integrated with multiple Cloud solutions), but overall, SaaS is witnessing significant adoption among CFOs.
According to Gartner, there is a clear shift from on-premise to Cloud. By 2025, 80% of midsize and 45% of large financial application projects will be deployed on the Cloud.
Selecting the suitable SaaS-based ERP
SaaS ERP is more cost-effective than on-premise systems. However, before deciding, CFOs should factor in the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO), which includes subscription fees, customization costs, and ongoing maintenance & support costs.
That being said, TCO is not the ultimate criterion. It should be about creating business value. For example, you can think of the shareholder value, what are the opportunities for your company to be more competitive or create significant differentiation?
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Your priority might be to free up your working capital, where SaaS-based ERP can help you improve operations like procure-to-pay, project-to-close, tax deductions, etc.
The other factors you should take into consideration include:
  • Focus on globalization – Does the vendor have a globalization strategy?
  • A clear roadmap for future capabilities – does it intend to enhance the product with capabilities like localization, global multi-currency accounting, bank reconciliations, etc.?
  • Implementation partners - does it have a network of boutique/specialty partners along with large and midsize financial management/SI consultancies?
  • Upper-market features – does it provide features like account reconciliation, intercompany accounting, period tasks, intelligent accruals, and financial analytics?
  • Scalability – does the solution has the capacity to scale upward when accounting processes are not overly complex?
Some of the key steps to kick-start this collaboration include
As a CFO, selecting the right SaaS-based ERP solution is crucial for achieving maximum business growth. With so many industry players in sight, it can be overwhelming to determine which solution will best meet your organization's needs.
Let's further elaborate on the key factors that you should consider when choosing a Cloud ERP solution.
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1. Scalability and flexibility
These are indispensable factors while selecting a Cloud ERP solution. As your business grows, you will need a solution that can adapt to your changing needs, like handling increasing users, transactions, and data without compromising performance. Additionally, it should be flexible enough to handle different business processes, such as accounting, inventory management, and customer relationship management.
2. Integration with other systems
Another critical factor is the solution's ability to integrate with other systems. A Cloud ERP solution should seamlessly integrate with other systems, such as CRM, accounting, and inventory management systems, to provide a complete view of your business operations. It can help ensure that all data is accurate and up-to-date, which is crucial for making informed business decisions.
3. Security
Security is a critical aspect of any Cloud ERP solution. You should ensure that your chosen solution has robust security features to protect sensitive business data from unauthorized access. This includes encryption, two-factor authentication, and regular security audits. Moreover, the vendor should comply with industry-specific regulations, such as HIPAA and PCI-DSS, to ensure that it meets the security requirements of your business.
4. Cost and ROI
Cost is always a significant consideration when choosing a Cloud ERP vendor. CFOs should look for vendors who offer a good return on investment (ROI). This means that the solution should provide significant cost savings through reduced operational costs, improved efficiency, and increased productivity to justify the investment. Additionally, it should be flexible enough to accommodate different pricing models, such as per-user or per-transaction, to ensure that it fits within your budget.
5. Vendor support
Lastly, CFOs should consider the level of vendor support offered by the solution. An ideal Cloud ERP vendor should have a dedicated support team to provide training and resources to help users extract maximum value from the solution and, at the same time, troubleshoot and resolve any technical problems that may arise.
In conclusion, selecting the right Cloud ERP solution is crucial for achieving maximum business growth. CFOs should consider scalability, flexibility, integration, security, cost and ROI, and vendor support when choosing a solution. You can make informed decisions that will benefit your business in the long run by taking the time to evaluate these factors.
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