For decades, companies face limited choices when it came to financial management software – set up a server and find a software suite that promised to meet your needs, but seldom did. And the cost was staggering to begin and only became worse as support and add-ons were needed.
But a new era has dawned for CFOs as they consider the opportunity to craft their own software solutions from the myriad of applications available on the cloud, but still the question remains: To suite or not to suite? THINKstrategies provides a well-researched answer to this question in the white paper “The Best-of-Breed Advantage for Financial Management: Get the Full Benefit of the Cloud.”
Unprecedented Challenges Facing Businesses
Businesses of all sizes are facing new challenges in this globalized economy that are forcing them into new methods of operation. Among the challenges:
- Advancing competition as globalization, e-commerce, and cloud-based services lower barriers to entry and allow new competitors to gain market share.
- Increasing customer expectations and declining customer loyalty as product choices rise and pricing declines, particularly with online offerings.
- Changing organizational needs with the rise of global business and dispersion of employees with a need for remote access to corporate resources.
Meeting these challenges will require a more robust financial management system that can constantly monitor performance to adapt quickly to changing market dynamics. More and more, CFOs are finding their traditional on-premise software suites lack the ability to meet these rapidly changing demands.
Turning to SaaS Solutions
The new generation of Software-as-a-Service applications delivered through the cloud has stepped in to meet these needs for a growing number of companies. SaaS solutions are proving to be more user-friendly, flexible and cost-effective than their on-premises suite successors. This is combining with the growing strength of application program interfaces (APIs) that are overcoming the advantages touted by suite software developers by allowing seamless integration of SaaS applications.
The convergence of SaaS applications and APIs has brought the best-of-breed solution to financial management systems to the forefront as companies have been able to select the best software solutions for each of their needs and effortless to integrate them through APIs. Companies now are implementing changes in a matter of weeks rather than months, at a lower cost and with software that employees find easier to use and can more easily adapt to your company’s purposes.
A 2012 McKinsey & Company study, conducted by the University of Oxford, found large financial management software projects on the average runs 45 percent over budget and 7 percent over time while delivering 56 percent less value than predicted. In today’s tighter, fast-paced markets, all of these problems work against a company trying to operate at peak efficiency, plus lead to employee dissatisfaction.
Looking Deeper into the Challenges
In upcoming blog posts, we will delve deeper into these issues as addressed in the white paper. Coming up will be:
- Part 2: Why the Time Is Right for SaaS Solutions – We will consider why legacy, on-premise software solutions no longer are viable for today’s agile businesses.
- Part 3: The Advantages of Best-of-Breed SaaS Applications – We will discuss why best-of-breed applications give your company the greatest advantage.
- Part 4: What’s Wrong with SaaS Suites – We will look into the disadvantages of SaaS suites that strive to be “all things to all people.”
As your company considers moving ahead in this global, Internet economy, finding the best financial management solution will be a challenge, but one that can provide great dividends to your company’s bottom line today and into the future. Contact us when you need guidance in navigating the cloud and searching for the best solution to each of your company’s financial management needs.