In Part One of this series, the focus was placed on the advantages of situating all or part of an ERP technology in cloud-based datacenters and the many benefits of implementing a Paperless ERP solution with AP/AR automation.
When the two strategies are combined into a cloud-based Paperless ERP solution like MetaViewer, the benefits become supercharged. Paper invoices and other documentation are converted to digital form for simplified, more accurate processing. Workflow can be automated to ensure that all documentation is managed in an organized fashion across the enterprise. Access to accounting data and reports becomes an easy process for all authorized personnel, anywhere across the globe.
Another advantage of placing AP and AR data in the cloud can be found in the automatic backup that is an inherent feature of the cloud. In the event of a disaster that impacts the company—computer hacking, fire, tornado, flood—all of the organization’s accounting data remains intact and available in the cloud. Users can simply access a computer anywhere, log in and continue working.
Finally, since all the data is digital, paperwork cannot get lost, damaged or illegitimately copied. In these ways, digital data is far more secure than paper receipts or other physical documentation.
Some businesses may want to keep some of their data on their own premises simply because of the special procedures they must use to protect it and/or the need to severely limit access. ERP with an integrated paperless document management solution like MetaViewer can meet that need through a hybrid cloud solution, allowing the most sensitive data to remain in the company’s servers while other functions are managed in the cloud.
Whatever configuration you may be considering, you may wish to bear in mind these five tips to help ensure that when you’re set to reach for the cloud your transition goes smoothly:
- Even if you feel you are not quite ready to consider the cloud today, you should move ahead with selecting both an ERP vendor and a document management system vendor who have cloud-computing solutions. Once you are ready later on, moving to the cloud will be much less expensive and disruptive because it will simply involve extending your current technology to cloud-based systems.
- Don’t feel that you must move all your business-critical applications to the cloud at once. Choose a smaller project to implement and build on that success. Start perhaps with just e-mail or your invoicing process.
- If you plan to keep your ERP solution in-house for the time being, be sure your paperless AP automation vendor can integrate its solution with your in-house system. When you are ready to adopt the cloud, the entire system should be able to move there as one integrated solution.
- Be certain that your technology vendors have experience integrating with solutions residing in different secure databases. The chances of all your solutions residing in the same datacenter are very slim, and you don’t want these applications to become isolated clouds of their own.
- Encourage your vendors to submit digital invoices and other documentation, rather than paper. Digital data allows franchisees and remote offices to transmit all their invoices directly to headquarters in an easily manageable fashion, rather than sending boxloads of paper documents to be scanned. Scanning paper documents into a cloud-based system is a necessary function but will consume a much larger amount of bandwidth between the office and the cloud when compared to sending digital documents.
If your business is ready to reach for the cloud—or if it wants to maximize its use of a cloud-based ERP platform—check the opportunities and savings available through Paperless ERP with Metafile at
By Nick Sprau, Vice President of Marketing