As the saying goes, hindsight is 20/20. It’s easy to think, “man, we should have shut down for a few hours to make that repair” now that you have to pay thousands and wait for parts, or, “we really should have updated that label” as OSHA writes you up for incorrectly labeling a chemical. However, in light of recent events, many businesses are left thinking, “we really weren’t prepared for this work from home order.”

When Would We Ever Need to Work from Home?

While much of the manufacturing sector is essential, and many employees at these businesses are as well, there’s a good chance if you’re reading this, you’re probably working at a business deemed non-essential. Even if you are at an essential business, unless you’re making something, running communications, or managing the IT department, you’re likely in a department that isn’t included on the list.

We can also assume you’re using a legacy ERP product like Macola. Why? Why else did you click this? So, what does this mean for you? Well, for starters, you’re probably trying to work from home as your IT staff scrambles to keep a semblance of connectivity. Even after a few weeks of this, you’re probably in a position where you don’t have full access.

Those personalized workspaces are much less user-friendly when you can’t access them. Getting onto the core product using a VPN was hard enough, but those add-ons might be another story. That ‘trusty old ERP’ feels a lot less reliable when you have to take additional steps to access it from on the go.

If you scoffed at the thought of the cloud a decade ago, thinking, “everything is produced here; when would we ever need to work from home?” Well, you got your answer. 

The Overnight Move from On-Site to Remote

Understandably, you’ve probably gotten sick of hearing the word unprecedented. But unprecedented is a reasonably accurate term—the last time we faced a true global pandemic, computers were still an unheard-of technology, nearly all manufacturing was done here in the US, and everything was done on paper.

Within a month, the term ‘business as usual’ became a thing of the past. In fact, most of the change happened within a week, when states moved from considering stay at home orders to issuing them. March 14-21 marked a complete shift in operations for those of us in Illinois, with many figuring out who was essential on the 20th and having to make a change before 9am on the 23rd.

Learn more in The New State of Work in Challenging Times.

Did Legacy ERP Leave You Scrambling?

For those using a legacy ERP product like Macola or one of the many other ECi ERP products, the change was at best an unpleasant experience—virtualization, VPNs, and a few hoops to jump through. At worst, you still haven’t connected. The most likely scenario is that it took a few days, a bit of overtime for your IT department, and a few thousand dollars of software to get connected.

Nonetheless, the phrase “a more natural ERP experience” that Macola uses to tout their latest product might feel a bit laughable. A natural experience would mean the exact same experience in the office, on the road, or at home. From access to the core product to complete connection to the applications that complement it, it’s likely nothing about the change has felt natural.

There’s a simple reason for this. The company wasn’t ready for the cloud. In turn, Macola users were left unprepared for the unprecedented change. It’s the kind of thing that happens when, in the words of the ECi President and Chief Operating Officer, Macola is “[…] also a cloud company.”

True Cloud Solutions are Essential for the Modern Business

True cloud solutions are, at a minimum, completely reinvented to work in the cloud. The best of them are built in the cloud. Saying that you’re “also a cloud company” means that you never intended to be one and are offering a product that is loosely considered a ‘cloud’ product.

True cloud is a mindset—one built around access, growth, connection, and collaboration.

In a recent CIO article about COVID-19’s impact on the enterprise and remote work, Kris Lahiri, co-founder and CISO of Egnyte, says organizations need to provide remote employees with collaboration tools and technology. “Pandemics and natural disasters put corporations behind the eight ball, but organizations that can maintain access to critical business content and collaboration processes…are in a good position to deal with these,” he said.

Modern management software is essential to help business leaders understand how recent disruptions impact every industry. Thankfully, CRM, ERP and supply chain software have evolved dramatically in recent years, helping firms improve visibility into customer and supplier channels to respond to changes in underlying business conditions.

Learn more in Why a Truly Mobile ERP Is More Important Than Ever.

Maybe It’s Time to Move on from Macola

Macola has been around for more than forty years. In disease terms, companies were using Macola before Polio was eradicated in the US. In the software space, the last thing you can do is rest on your history—memories are rightfully short, and users need to ask, “what have you done for me lately?”

If you’re tired of the limited access, overreliance on ‘add-ons’ and brittle-at-best integrations that don’t reflect the modern technological landscape, maybe it’s time to move on. We did.

With The Donas Group, Macola users can leverage our experience in both Macola and Acumatica for a seamless, and effective migration, utilizing modern, cloud-based software like Acumatica. Get to know more about what it means to be truly in the cloud by comparing Macola to Acumatica.

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