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Advice and Information for Finance Professionals

How Strong is the Case for Moving to EPM to the Cloud?

Guest Author

By Susan Rebner, Datavail

It’s a question we hear quite often in our EPM practice: “When is the right time to start moving my finance functions to the cloud?” Based on the results of a recent Oracle survey, it’s now.

Business leaders are always looking for new ways to gain a competitive advantage. Oracle’s 2018 survey of enterprise performance management (EPM) trends found that an overwhelming majority are looking to EPM in the cloud to give them that edge.

Learn the top EPM trends that you need to know.

The cloud represents an excellent opportunity for companies to achieve high performance, scalability and agility at lower costs than on-premises solutions. Major firms—from Kraft Heinz to Mazda to Kellogg's—are moving EPM to the cloud in record numbers. Let’s look at the key drivers and some important considerations for your cloud migration.

Why Do Businesses Move to the Cloud?

The biggest selling point of the cloud for business leaders is the immediate cost savings that they can realize. The Oracle survey found that cost drivers were the top three reasons cited for moving EPM to the cloud:

  • Want to avoid an on-premises upgrade (48%)
  • Want to avoid infrastructure investment (47%)
  • Lower total cost of ownership (38%)

Yet once they had made the move to EPM in the cloud, companies found that the cost benefits—while substantial—were outweighed by the continuous innovation that comes with always being up to date on the latest software. A huge number of respondents—89 percent—cited “Staying current on technology” as a benefit:

  • Staying current on technology (89%)
  • Being able to deploy faster (79%)
  • Increased flexibility (79%)
  • Economic benefits (77%)

As indicated in these responses, two other highly important advantages of the cloud are speed and flexibility. Cloud implementation partners can meet a company's needs very quickly, greatly reducing project timelines. Experienced partners such as Datavail have a predefined cloud implementation process and highly skilled EPM resources, allowing our clients to save up to 50 percent in deployment times. And with cloud providers rolling out updates on a regular basis, companies are able to quickly adopt the latest best practices without any lag time.

The longer that businesses remain outside the cloud, the more that their IT and finance leaders will continue to be challenged with questions such as:

  • Is an on-premises solution truly the best long-term approach for our company?
  • Will the cloud favorably position us to rapidly exploit the emerging tools, techniques, and technologies that modern organizations use for their financial operations?
  • How long can we stay on premises before our competitors start to leave us in the dust?

When Are You Moving to the Cloud?

By now, it's no longer a question of whether you should move to the cloud, but rather when you plan on doing it. Once you've decided to migrate to the cloud, here are some important considerations:

  • Applications that are in transition should likely be moved to the cloud first, such as finance applications that are in need of an upgrade or other drastic change.
  • Figure out what your expected ROI is before you make the move so that you have a point of comparison afterwards. By checking your software contracts, you may find that moving to the cloud will significantly cut your licensing costs.
  • Cloud migrations are an excellent time to reevaluate your use of antiquated processes and systems. As your business changes over time thanks to growth and M&A, your finance needs will also evolve. For example, moving to the cloud is the perfect excuse to switch from managing via spreadsheet to a world-class financial solution like Oracle EPM Cloud.

Oracle EPM Cloud

Leading the market in EPM cloud solutions, Oracle EPM Cloud offers all the benefits of cloud computing with the security and support of a multibillion-dollar organization.

Oracle EPM Cloud includes applications to manage various financial processes, including:

The case for moving EPM to the cloud is strong—and with more and more companies making the move, it’s getting stronger every day. Finance and IT leaders should begin taking steps to make their processes more efficient and productive, and quickly gain an advantage over their competitors. Those who don’t are certain to be left behind.

What are the top EPM trends you need to know? Get the report.

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