What Can “Cloud” Do For Your Business?

Technology is always changing and customers looking for a cloud solution often say they are looking for a “true cloud.” The question is – What is true cloud? More importantly;

What can Cloud do for your business?

Just as process improvement methodologies typically look at People, Process and Technology, cloud computing models look at Organizational Readiness, Software and Technology Infrastructure.

My LinkedIn article covers the maturity of cloud and the organizations that use the cloud.   

  • What are the different types of cloud and what makes a cloud “cloudier“?
  • What makes a company ready for cloud?
  • How do you know if you are ready for cloud?

The article is broken into 3 sections:

  1. Technology and how it has matured through phases of maturity
  2. Software and how it has adapted to cloud technology
  3. Organizational Readiness using the Open Alliance for Cloud Adoption maturity model.

When looking for a cloud solution for your company, the journey begins with an honest self-assessment of what you want to accomplish and how ready you are for change. All true benefits come from a process-oriented approach which integrates people, process and technology into a solution that meets customer needs.   There cannot truly be one answer for what defined “true cloud” as there is not one organizational structure that best fits all companies!

The I-BN Blog will continue with three additional posts covering each of these areas in greater detail so you can truly assess what cloud can do for your organization.

For more information on how I-BN can help you transform your business using our cloud platform, contact one of our cloud specialists via web form on our contact us page, call at 678-627-0646 or e-mail sales@i-bn.net 

The New Normal – Packaged Cloud ERP

The spread of the novel corona virus  has changed life throughout the world. While public interactions have been mostly shut down, digital interactions are becoming a bigger part of our personal and work life.

In this time – and probably for quite a long time after – digital life will be the default set up for most of us. In many industries working from home is the new norm. Even industries which were not really open remote working arrangements before the COVID-19 pandemic must comply to this new business model in order to survive.

Schools now connect students with their teachers digitally and have a full virtual experience with the same collaboration tools we are using for businesses. This also applies for corporate events: many annual conferences are now being offered as a 100% digital experience. And it doesn’t stop there; all industries need to rethink their business model and find ways to innovate.

In an already constantly changing society, such an abrupt shift from what we had considered “normal life” before to a newly established digital life frightens many people. Business owners need to respond to this crisis by stabilizing their organization, protecting their people and eventually, unlocking untapped growth by engaging their customers and partners to move to new adaptive ways of working.

Many businesses are facing major disruption when it comes to their supply chains. This is especially critical for manufacturing companies, but also for almost all the companies which need to protect their end-to-end supply chain processes in order to sustain their place in the market. The changes brought on by the corona virus forces us to find solutions to overcome new challenges around replenishment, stock visibility, and sourcing.

Core processes supporting the supply chain like Finance, Procurement and Inventory Management can really be the difference between surviving today and driving success in the future.   A strong core ERP like SAP Business One or Sage 100 Cloud has never been more important than today to help streamline data models, optimize and transform daily business, and adopt new technical trends. The adoption of these innovations accelerates strategic decision making, which is key to sustain a business during this crisis and provide their employees with the necessary tools to grow into the future.

Just as important, your business needs a partner who has kept up with the marketplace changes. I-Business Network packages the technology created by SAP, Sage, Microsoft and Citrix for small to mid-sized businesses to:

  1. Provide an ERP in the Cloud that is easy to use
  2. Supply the information on any device, anywhere
  3. Provide information in real time for faster decisions
  4. Meet your unique business challenges today and into the future 

For more information on how we can make your business an adaptable intelligent enterprise, contact me at jlawrence@i-bn.net or call your SAP Distribution specialist at 678-401-6244.

What is New in SAP Business One Version 10

Business One version 10 is the latest major release from SAP for its small to mid-market product.  SAP continues to deliver on its vision of the Intelligent Enterprise through a strategy centered around:

  • “Consumer Grade Experience” – A user experienced designed to be as easy for business as consumer applications have become.
  • Powerful Platform – Ensuring that the system is open for integrations such as e-commerce, shipping, warehouse management and much more.
  • Built In Integration – Out of the box integrations with applications through the new “integration hub”
  • Cloud – Enabling applications to run smoothly in the cloud by detaching applications from the underlying infrastructure
  • Applied Intelligence – Embedding AI, machine learning, advanced analytics and other tools to create business value.

Version 10 provides significant enhancements to all of these development guidelines.  Some key enhancements include:

  • New Web Client helps with both the user experience and cloud deployment.  The B1 Web Client uses the proved Fiori technology familiar to customers using the HANA version of the product and further simplifies the user experience for managing customers and inventory, creating sales orders and viewing of other sales documents and analysis.   The web client incorporates all the power, felxibility and personalization created in the full client such as user defined tables, fields and objects!
  • Enhanced Office 365 compatibility and the new integration hub make the Business One Platform easier for integrations.  Using the Business One Integration Framework (B1if), the new integration hub reduces the complexity of integrations and includes templates or “scenarios” developed and supported by SAP.  The initial launch of this tool includes 
    • Shopify – Cloud-based e-Commerce platform
    • UPS (United Parcel Service) – Global shipping and logistics provider
    • Nexmo – SMS service
    • Fixer – Exchange rates API
    • Magento – Cloud-based enterprise e-Commerce
    • Salesforce – Cloud-based CRM Suite
    • DHL – Global shipping and logistics provider
    • Mailchimp – Cloud-based marketing and e-mail platform
    • SendGrid – Cloud-based marketing and e-mail platform
    • RFQ – Request For Quotation with SAP Business One 

The SAP Integration Hub is a component of the SAP Intercompany Solution, although you do not need to deploy intercompany to use the scenarios.

Version 10 entered early adopter mode in November 2019.  Early adopter mode follows an extensive testing process by SAP and begins with customers who need the new features and have vanilla or close to vanilla deployments.  As more customers are enabled on the platform acceptance into the program will expand to cover a wider variety of customer use cases.  SAP uses this method of adoption to ensure the solution is rock solid before it becomes “Generally Available”.   SAP doesn’t fix the timeframe, but rather fixes the number of satisfied customers required in each localization (country or region) to determine when the product is generally available.  We would estimate tht SAP Business One version 10 will be generally available around the end of Q1 and full support for all major third party enhancements will be rock solid by mid-year 2020.

For more information about SAP Business One and SAP Business One Cloud powered by I-BN, contact us at 678-627-0646 x230 or e-mail us at sales@i-bn.net.