Grace Freeman, Sage Intacct Analyst for Percipient, examines the impact of harbouring outdated accounting software, and highlights the importance of getting the timing right when it comes to deploying new capabilities.
Business growth unfortunately goes hand-in-hand with outgrowing business systems. Exacerbated by the pace of digital transformation, more and more companies are finding that the systems they invested in five or even ten years ago, are at best, inefficient and at worst, restricting business growth.
The problem is that deploying new systems too early in the overall lifecycle can result in unnecessary costs. Yet waiting too long, and making the decision to replace existing infrastructure too late, can be devastating from a business perspective. Therefore, pinpointing precisely, the right time to switch is paramount.
The tell-tale signs are often obvious: excessive use of manual processes; having to create workarounds to fulfil a particular function; delays in reporting or finding the right data from which to resolve a query; and having to call upon frequent support to pursue an action.
What isn’t so obvious, is the costs and risks faced as a result of these inefficient ways of working.
Disparate, fragmented, heavily customised systems result in the pulling together of separate departmental reports, usually involving the re-keying of data, which is typically time-consuming and error-prone and can send costs spiralling. And that’s without the increasing frequency of patching and updates behind the scenes.
The extra resources required to bridge these technological gaps, could be well utilised elsewhere in the business to identify new opportunities and focus on value-add activities.
The fast paced nature of the digital economy means that in real terms, this might make the difference between winning market share or being late to the table.
Alignment is Key
By investing in a system which is designed to support the challenges of a particular business profile, or industry sector, whether those are around project accounting; compliance with international regulatory frameworks or a cloud deployment model, these issues can be easily solved.
The right system will support the specific dynamics of an organisation, and scale to support growth. Through automatically connecting, collecting and presenting insights to the right people, at the right time, well aligned accounting software will support decision-making and add real value to the business.
It’s no longer a case of if you embrace the digital world, but when. With the most forward-thinking companies acknowledging that the right technology is now as intrinsic to growth as employing the right people.
Many businesses are making-do for far too long. Risking inaccuracies and spending more and more time and effort bridging ever-widening technology gaps, at the expense of business development.
Therefore, selecting the right system at the right time, not just for the short term, but with sufficient scale for the long term, is crucial.
In the new digital economy, finance systems shouldn’t hold back business growth. But the extent to which companies accept and embrace necessary change will increasingly set out the leaders from the laggards as we move further into the 2020’s.
If you would like to know more about Percipient or would like to discuss how we can help to improve your accounting solutions, get in touch or call us on 01606 871332.