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The CFO’s Guide to Cloud ERP Solutions

The CFO’s Guide to Cloud ERP Solutions (1)

The modern CFO is no longer only in charge of the company's finances and bookkeeping but is now held accountable for in-depth financial reports, financial analysis, and acting as a strategic partner or advisor for the CEO. As such, CFOs need a reliable, cost-effective solution for their organization that allows for real-time reporting, seamless communication, and customizable features that can tailor to their organization's specific needs. This guide explores the benefits of moving to a cloud ERP solution and the top nine ways CFO's benefit from cloud ERP solutions. Plus, how ERP solutions allow for better communication and how CFO's stand to profit from cloud ERP solutions. 

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Benefits of Moving to the Cloud for CFO’s 

Your current enterprise resource management system is familiar. It houses all your data, you’re familiar with its functions, and know exactly how to get the results you want from it. Unfortunately, that system is also holding back the rest of your business from growth, security, efficiency, productivity—and the list goes on. There are several significant benefits moving to a cloud ERP brings to an organization, specifically to the CFO’s office.

Greatly Reduce Infrastructure Costs

Consider how much your company spent on its internal servers. Now consider that to stay on top of technology, you will be spending that every few years to replace and upgrade equipment. You will need to increase that expense from the additional hardware required to expand. By switching to a solution like NetSuite ERP, you can eliminate that infrastructure cost. NetSuite is a cloud; nothing is stored on-premise. In addition, because SaaS services are reached through the Internet, you and your employees can access and manage business processes on any device.

For the CFO, this means greater budget allotment for your departments. Cloud ERP solutions also mean higher security surrounding the company’s vital information, reducing the CFO’s security concerns while simultaneously creating less overhead expenditure and greater business process efficiency.

Information is Accessible Anywhere by Any Authorized User

You no longer need to be out of touch while on business trips. Cloud ERP solutions (like NetSuite) allow any authorized user to log into the system from anywhere in the world (or anywhere with internet access). Mobility means that the CFO can work remotely, manage other locations on a single platform, and access reports in real-time due to modern cloud computing. Furthermore, CFOs and other team members can access real-time data while meeting with clients and vendors or hire the best talent regardless of their location. 

Cloud ERP solutions allow employees to have the same productivity levels irrespective of their physical location. Such mobility is notable if your business has multiple locations. Localized software inhibits your employees from accessing data in real-time, and self-hosting servers are costly when your company has to maintain speed and reliability at various locations.

The Cloud is a Fully Customizable Solution

When was the last time you signed into an application, and it provided everything you need as well as everything that the department next to you needs to do their job? Often, the answer is never. Prepackaged software has to work in many different scenarios, and thus, many times does not mirror your business’s processes very accurately. Custom-coded business management software seems to be the answer until you realize that your IT team has spent the bulk of their efforts supporting and managing software.

Cloud ERP software answers this problem. The CFO now works off of one platform. When reports need to be pulled, they include a complete picture of what is exported from that single application, not to mention that the reports show real-time data. cloud ERP solutions align business processes. When something goes into the system, it appears across the board, taking much of the weight off the CFO when preparing reports, budgeting, and looking at the business’s overall financial health. Sign in, view your dashboard and click on what you need to investigate further. It's as simple as that. 

Improved Data Security

Although it may seem counterintuitive, moving to a cloud system can heighten the security of your sensitive financial data. The reason for this is simple: all clients need the best protection possible, and if they didn’t have top-of-the-line security, they wouldn’t be in business. What is suitable for your data is ideal for everyone’s data. cloud ERP solutions can invest the resources to ensure that no one has access to your information except your users. 

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Top 9 Ways CFOs Benefit from Cloud ERP Solutions 

1. Streamlined Business Processes

Unlike on-premise ERP software, cloud systems enable anytime, anywhere business access. The CFO can see key performance indicators right upon login with a personalized dashboard. Streamlined business processes improve visibility and allow CFOs to make accurate and informed decisions on the fly.

2. Enhance Collaborative Planning

NetSuite, for example, works with Adaptive Planning—planning, budgeting, and forecasting software that consolidates financials. By expanding your cloud stack with these products, the collaboration between employees happens efficiently and productively. Teams can review accessible information and forecasts quickly with information readily available.

3. Faster Close

Month-end often wreaks havoc on CFOs and administrative employees if all fails to balance out. As cloud ERP reduces close tasks by 50%, month-end reports and profit and loss statements become easy projects rather than long-lasting headaches.

With a single version of the truth, the entire organization will benefit from increased accuracy and reporting capabilities.

4. Simple Review of Key Performance Indicators (KPI)

It is difficult to set new goals or change strategies without knowing your KPI’s. Real-time reports and data make this easier. Set goals for growth so you can analyze their progress as they develop. The modern CFO has various facets to keep an eye on; with KPIs shown on the dashboard, they can focus on activities to enhance business performance and add value to shareholders.

5. Easier Decision Making

Real-time access means data remains updated. As CFO, you can make decisions and respond to issues quicker—meaning better problem solving and efficient guidance.

6. Mobile Access

Mobile access is the way of the future. The mobile access features available on modern ERP systems allow login from mobile devices when on the road. Decision-making remains uninterrupted.

7. Lowering Total Cost of Ownership

On-premises ERP requires attention from your IT department and other in-house resources that will increase costs. Cloud ERP stores your financials in “the cloud,” meaning no maintenance of hardware, servers, databases, backups, and upgrades.

8. Outsourcing Convenience with Skilled Consultants

Outsourcing ERP implementation means in-house resources work primarily with the consulting team for implementation. Not only do cloud computing consulting firms implement ERP solutions, but they can give you strategic advice on how to integrate other cloud applications like NetSuite with Adaptive Insights or Salesforce. 

9. Improve Financial Compliance and Reduce Risk

With laws like Sarbanes-Oxley, financial regulation compliance is crucial—or your company can face fines and possible prosecution. Creating accurate reports with updated information allows companies to handle compliance issues competently and reduce risk in the process. 


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The CFO’s Guide for Better Communication Using ERP Software

The sharing of information not only drives business but society as a whole. And much like in life, business communication can be complicated, burdensome, and ineffective. However, your business will never reach its true potential without good communication. Various reports conclude that it is more complex than ever for CFOs to effectively communicate critical information to investors, analysts, and employees due to increased responsibilities. Although this is an imperative task, it is burdensome to many CFOs.

The breakdown of communication in the business world is often founded on time and the availability of information. There is no more significant frustration for an employee or management team than getting information too late or not knowing the status of their company.  

Furthermore, investors may want to invest in your company but cannot receive accurate or timely financial reports. This section will look at how CFOs can set the standard for better communication—both internally and externally—using ERP software.

Internal Communication

ERP platforms (like NetSuite) allow employees in locations worldwide to access and update the same data pool in real-time. That means teams no longer work on outdated information or lack valuable data. 

Legacy ERP software platforms are often localized and only keep records on-premises. Information silos are cumbersome for organizations and can result in failed communication. 

Using a cloud ERP system, CFOs can mitigate the hassle of communicating financial reports to the management team via automated reports using real-time and integrated data from across the organization.

Related: Transitioning Financials to the Cloud & Why it Makes Sense Now

Communicating Value to Investors & Analysts

As a CFO, it is easy to get distracted from communicating with investors and partners when you dig through various systems and rely on clunky Excel spreadsheets to gather numbers and produce reports. Insufficient data leads to inaccurate business forecasting, which can negatively impact your external partnerships. That’s why modern CFOs have been turning to cloud ERP systems to automate financial management, inventory, sales, marketing expenses, and more. 

CFOs only need to use one system to generate real-time reports and convey accurate financial status to upper management, investors, and analysts by integrating all business data.

Read More: Fortune 500 Players Get A Facelift with Cloud ERP Software


It shouldn’t surprise that meeting compliance requirements may be one of the most critical responsibilities of a CFO and their team. CEOs and CFOs can be held criminally liable for signing off on SEC filings that are misleading or false. That’s why many CFOs have adopted enterprise solutions to ensure financial accuracy for the entire office. Using a cloud ERP solution helps keep CFOs informed about what you put your name on, what your employees are doing and ensures a single version of the truth.

Communication failures are never planned, and they occur due to breakdowns in the ability to share and access information. Communication will break down naturally if your ERP software can’t convey stats company-wide and post in real-time. That is why cloud ERP is a necessity in the modern-day market space. It brings data and communication together for several different facets of the company. Business management platforms like NetSuite are further advancing the available information and reports for CFOs and controllers.

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The CFOs Guide to Improving Profitability With ERP Software

The daily activities of running a business can be so occupying that they leave no room for evaluating the various processes within your organization. While process evaluation is crucial, most organizations place it in the backseat, especially if there is no easy way of getting the necessary data. As a result, the business suffers from inefficiency, which will make it difficult to achieve revenue goals.

To optimize your output, you have to regularly correct and realign the business processes to match the objectives. Only then would you see an improvement in revenues. To do this, many successful companies rely on the functionality of enterprise resource planning (ERP) software.

An ERP system will give you an overview of the business processes and operations from start to finish. In the hands of a CFO, this convenience can be vital to realizing profits. After your ERP software is in place, you can start to see profit gains by taking a few simple steps. Business management software for streamlining processes using ERP increases efficiency and improves profitability.

Define Your Ideal Customer

The concept of identifying your ideal customer applies primarily to project-based organizations where each client comes in with a unique set of requirements and needs a customized solution. With the software in place for enterprise resource planning, you can picture the resources allocated to a project concerning the projected income. The CFO can assess and reassign resources accordingly based on the available information.

Manage Your Staff

Your team is the most critical asset of your business as their efficiency directly affects profitability. An ERP solution can help you assess the performance of your staff by providing information on their output and proficiency. The CFO or project manager can assign the most qualified employees to a matching task with this knowledge. By allocating the most productive team to an assignment, productivity is enhanced, and timely delivery is maintained.

Centralized Repository of Information

At the start, businesses can use legacy systems such as spreadsheets to store their data. However, as a business expands, it outgrows such a system. If you run your business on legacy systems, your data will be spread across many sources, making it hard to organize and see any actual trends. Unnagragatted data not only makes it hard to retrieve the data, but errors can also go unnoticed.

An ERP system uses a central database to capture and dispatch information through a user-friendly interface. The data is retrieved faster, and thus more accurate decisions can be made by upper management.

Real-Time Monitoring

ERP software has the information on every business transaction and process in a central location for easy retrieval and dispatches in real-time. At any given time, a CFO can monitor any aspect of the business and measure it against key performance indicators to gauge whether it is optimum. Any inefficient process can be identified and corrected quickly, and the result is increased productivity.

Robust Resource Planning

An ERP system provides information from the supply chain right through to the end of production. This information helps allocate resources where they are needed. If any process along the processing line is deprived of resources, it can be sorted out quickly. The CFO can also use this data for future planning of the deployment of resources

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Could your organization benefit from an ERP cloud solution? The team at 360 Cloud Solutions is a certified Netsuite Partner, providing top-notch ERP cloud solutions to businesses of all sizes. To learn more about Netsuite and 360 Cloud Solutions, visit our Netsuite Implementation page

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