According to Forrester’s recent survey of software decision makers, 36 percent of respondents rank allowing executive teams to focus resources on more strategic projectsas very important . That is, senior management, including CFOs, want a solid solution to outsourcing and safeguarding systems, without having to focus their own internal resources on meeting the goal. The question for CFOs is what software architecture delivers on the promise of allowing organizations to truly meet the goal of outsourcing ERP?

The Quadrant

When it comes to focusing on more important projects and bypassing ERP infrastructure support, including considerations about hardware, and software maintenance, system architecture matters. We’ve displayed four ERP architectures, including multitenant cloud, single tenant dloud, premise-based, and hosted (for premise-based solutions).

Of the four, only multi-tenant cloud manages all enhancements, updates, and data back-up simultaneously. Thus, without the requirement to manage each user session independently for these functions. Further, the other options also require separate contract considerations for hosting, security, back-up, and updates. Finally, customizations for the other three architectures must be migrated for each ERP software update. That is not the case with a multitenant cloud solution like Intacct.

The Comparison

Given the differences for ERP based on multi-tenant cloud architecture versus the other options, CFOs should consider some comparisons, including those summarized in the table below. To start, multi-tenant cloud gives users collective buying power, or the ability to share costs unlike individual users, or even clusters of users. Such economies of scale, allow vendors like Intacct, to focus on development (enhanced system functionality), and the ability to afford Tier I data center hosting. Independent buyers or small groups of buyers are unlikely to match the efficiency of this buying power.

Other CFO Criteria

The Forrester survey also shows 32 percent of respondents rank as very important the speed of implementation and deployment when considering the benefits of cloud software. Compared to other architectures, multi-tenant cloud software allows users to focus on software customization, or configuring to meet the specific requirements of a company’s internal workflow, rather than also having to consider hosting and access during their implementation. CFOs also need to know the system they’re selecting will grow with them. Or, future speed and scale require the right infrastructure to allow them to grow without fear of future migration. Intacct’s multi-tenant cloud solution addresses these requirements by aiming to keep utilization at 30 percent or less. The other quadrants leave those considerations to end users, thus, putting the onus on them as to how to scale.

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