Dear CFO: Be the Adult in the Room

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A whitepaper published by the ERP Software Blog provides responses to 35 questions CFOs should ask regarding ERP solutions in the cloud. Number 29 raises the topic of ISV (independent software vendor) solutions that may or may not work with your cloud ERP. It recommends that “choosing an ERP solution supported by a robust ecosystem of ISVs will ensure that the applications that you depend on will be adapted to work in the cloud.”

Today’s leading cloud ERP providers are all bolstered by ISVs that provide myriad software tools to meet companies’ specific requirements that go beyond ERP capabilities. It’s unusual for a company to deploy a cloud ERP system and not integrate it with a targeted ISV solution or with one of their other business systems. ISVs also offer standard integrations for ERP and other systems, or cloud-based tools to make new integrations reliable and easy to implement. Like cloud ERP systems, those ISV cloud solutions come as a software subscription with a predictable, recurring cost.

Keeping Technicalities off the CFO’s To-do List

Frankly, if you are the CFO, this is not really the kind of thing you should worry about. You can likely trust the CIO or IT manager to take care of these software issues. Instead, you should play a key role in maintaining the strategic perspective for a decision that’s as momentous in the life of your company as a new ERP system.

Companies often have a hard time keeping their ERP projects strategic. Once the company makes their ERP decision, they leave them to IT, where people quickly focus on software features and technical details. We often see that those are the high-risk, poorly planned ERP projects that fail. It doesn’t matter whether they’re in the cloud or on-premise.

If you want your company’s ERP project to succeed, aim higher. What you don’t want the company to do is translate existing process inefficiencies and other shortcomings into the new ERP system. Otherwise, the ERP deployment will be a disappointment. So you might want to ask questions like the following:

  • What are the possible process improvements that would make the company operate more effectively and economically? Are there business processes or even entire business groups that we can redefine or make more versatile?
  • How will ERP help you control costs over the next five years?
  • How will an ERP solution provide you with the business transparency, reporting, and compliance enablement you need?
  • If you need to give stakeholders better and more secure access to financial processes and data, will that be easier to accomplish in the cloud or with an on-premise solution?

Have you ever lived through a compromised or failing ERP implementation? You know how painful those can be. We don’t want that to happen to you. When we work with you on an ERP implementation, we help you keep your company’s goals present and practical at every step.

This publication contains general information only and Sikich is not, by means of this publication, rendering accounting, business, financial, investment, legal, tax, or any other professional advice or services. This publication is not a substitute for such professional advice or services, nor should you use it as a basis for any decision, action or omission that may affect you or your business. Before making any decision, taking any action or omitting an action that may affect you or your business, you should consult a qualified professional advisor. In addition, this publication may contain certain content generated by an artificial intelligence (AI) language model. You acknowledge that Sikich shall not be responsible for any loss sustained by you or any person who relies on this publication.


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