When asked about plans to move to a cloud-based ERP solution, a majority of respondents (44%) were unsure about their organizations’ plans for cloud ERP adoption, according to a global survey commissioned by insightsoftware that polled 471 financial professionals from organizations of all sizes and across numerous industries.
“Just” over 30% of respondents said their organization is already using or planning to use cloud ERP (enterprise resource planning) within the next year. This would be likely due, in part, to the complexity of migrating financial (and other) data and preserving the often highly customized functionality of on-premise ERP systems.
The following findings would reveal finance teams’ relative lack of visibility into cloud ERP deployments:
- 44% are not sure about plans to move to a cloud ERP
- 25% are not currently planning to move to a cloud ERP
- 21% of respondents are already using a cloud ERP
- 10% are planning to move to one within the next 6 – 12 months
While the relative lack of visibility into cloud ERP deployments is not overly surprising since ERP deployment decisions are typically driven by IT, it would highlight an opportunity for finance teams to proactively engage with IT early in the decision and planning phases – to ensure integration of tools that are optimized to deliver high-performance, automated, intelligent financial reporting from cloud-based ERP systems.
ERP Financial Reporting: ‘Misconceptions’
Organizations are steadily moving business-critical data and workloads to cloud ERP systems, with the global cloud ERP market size expected to reach nearly $38 billion by 2024, according to MarketsandMarkets. While this shift would bring cost and efficiency advantages, it would not solve the inherent limitations of native ERP financial reporting, “which is typically designed to support only basic reporting needs, rather than the specialized reporting requirements of finance departments.”
Yet, when respondents were asked in this survey by insightsoftware how they expect the move to a cloud ERP to improve financial reporting, they listed the following perceived benefits:
- Faster reporting (nearly 40%)
- Improved report automation (30%)
- Reduced reliance on IT (25%)
- More accurate reporting (21%)
“This survey exposes broad misconceptions that cloud ERPs will help to overcome the pain points associated with native ERP financial reporting, including the need to manually manipulate static data and depend on IT teams, all of which result in a time-intensive process that’s not conducive to the speed of business,” said Wes Gillette, vice president of product management at insightsoftware. “Unfortunately, these same financial reporting roadblocks that exist with on-premise ERP systems remain unchanged in cloud ERPs. For finance teams, it’s just ‘the same problem, different server,’ and in fact, new issues with performance can arise in the cloud, making financial reporting even slower. Finance professionals that anticipate these challenges can help their organizations prevent reporting delays and ensure the transition to a cloud ERP is a smooth one.”
About the Survey
Conducted in December 2019, the survey included respondents from every region of the world, serving in a wide range of roles – from accountants and financial analysts to controllers and chief financial officers – within finance departments of small, mid-sized and large organizations. It spanned a diverse set of industries, such as education, manufacturing, healthcare, commercial real estate, consumer goods, utilities, and government.
Primary ERP solutions in use by respondent organizations included a mix of on-premise and cloud ERP systems designed for general and industry-specific use, such as Microsoft Dynamics, JD Edwards, Oracle E-Business Suite, SAP, PeopleSoft, Epicor, and Viewpoint, among others.
With real-time integration to over 140 ERPs and EPMs, insightsoftware’s financial reporting solutions automate and accelerate financial and operational reporting processes for 25,000+ customers worldwide.