There are a lot of players and hard to navigate into core facts. Let’s start with the definition of Business applications, this is applications your company uses to run the business. Mandatory for everyone is of course ERP, but other application types such as HRM, CRM, Email and Office are typical business applications.
What are real Cloud applications?
One main challenge for all Software companies today is the transformation from On Premise software to cloud services. All the applications referred to above have been in the marketplace much longer than a decade. From a software architecture perspective it’s almost impossible to rewrite legacy software into real Cloud business applications. This is a story your software vendor necessarily don’t tell you. All software vendors have some kind of Cloud or SaaS story, but is it really a Cloud solution? Often the offering is more ASP or some solution padded around the old On Premise to make it appear as a Cloud offering.
Integration in the Cloud?
All business applications have some kind of integration to other applications like integration between ERP and CRM or ERP and Payroll. When you make the choice to move to Cloud you will demand the same integrations. There are a lot of excellent Cloud platforms out there like Amazon WS, Microsoft Azure, Oracle, Rackspace and others. Your applications maybe on several of these platforms or if you are lucky you can run them on one of them. Installing and configuring the integrations you need is hard and cost a lot when you implement this on premise, but this is harder and even more complex in cloud scenarios. SaaS vendors can’t provide you or your integration partner with the same access to the solution as when you have it locally installed.
What you should expect from a business solution in the Cloud?
Your vendor must provide:
- Purchase of complete solution in one single web shop
- The solution should be provisioned within 30 minutes, all integration in place
- All services must be available on any device (browser without plugins)
If your vendor can’t provide this you will miss on the business value of moving to Cloud.