Macola has been around for more than four decades, and for most of that time, it was an absolute workhorse. It did what it was supposed to do, kept you operating comfortably, and was consistent. But times change, and for many businesses, the status quo doesn’t cut it. Users need to work faster, have more information, and make smarter decisions, and operate in an evolving business landscape.

Knowing this, we’ve compiled a list of questions to ask to determine whether this product can deliver the functionality and benefits you need from a modern business management solution—and whether the Status Quo is still acceptable.

Add on or Integration?

Today’s business needs users to be more productive, well-informed, and able to make decisions from a broader than ever pool of information. Understandably, this means that some tools aren’t exactly optional.

Add-Ons: Loosely Connected, Brittle, and Rarely Up-To-Date

A decade ago, you could survive with loosely connected products built for specific tasks. Did you set up a storefront for some customers to pick up items? Do you provide value-added services like installation or ongoing maintenance? Have you worked to connect more closely with customers using a customer portal or eCommerce site?

In a modern economy, these things need to be accessible instantaneously. Customers expect to be able to pick up an item within hours, have a technician at their doorstep immediately, or have the item ready for shipping within a day. Loosely connected, limited, and vendor-specific add-ons won’t cut it.  

Learn more in Are Add-Ons Leaving Your Legacy ERP Bloated?

Integrations: Up-to-Date, Always Connected, and Empowering

True cloud solutions help you connect your entire business with products your employees want to use. Whether that’s an easy workflow that can take an order from an eCommerce site or portal, notify your staff to get the item ready for pickup or a single system that can connect dispatchers with technicians, inform both of the items needed, and facilitate every process, or the like, true integration goes well beyond a few add-ons.

Learn more in Cross-Module Workflow in Cloud ERP: What It is and Why It Matters and Why the Connected Business Relies on Seamless Cloud ERP Integrations.

Workspace or Dashboard?

If processes and workflows are benefitted by true cloud integration, the same should go for decisions. When considering whether to stick with the status quo in Macola or move to a true cloud solution, ask yourself, how much information do I need?

Workspaces: Anytime, Anywhere Access—to Some Things

One of the core selling points of Macola has been its workspaces. Designed to provide users with a more natural work experience, easier problem solving, and time savings using role specific views—even through a browser, there’s a difference between accessing information and acting on it.

Dashboards: Anytime, Anywhere Access—with the Ability to Act

Workspaces are useful, but only provide a taste of what true cloud productivity can provide. Dashboards are similar to workspaces, except they don’t rely on add-ons, decades-old reporting software, or limited access. Using the truly connected integrations dashboards in a true cloud solution like Acumatica give you real time information—and the ability to act on it.

Why? Because once you see the information on a dashboard, you’re just a few clicks or taps away from turning the data into a decision. You can see what’s changed, how it’s changed, and who has changed it. For instance, you just noticed that you’re coming close to the refill threshold—in the cloud, you can rest assured that’s in real time. Better yet, you can get the ball rolling on re-ordering.

Get to know more about the true power of dashboards here and read up on the most important KPIs for the distribution business here.

Survive or Build Resilience?

Everyone’s had to make changes over the last few months. Whether that meant sending some of your workforce home or all of it, the recent lockdowns have put a lot of pressure on those systems, processes, and connections your people have relied on.

Survival: Keep Your Business Moving (with a few tradeoffs)

While an outdated product might have given you access to the information, how much work did it take to get set up? Something we discussed in our blog, How is Macola™ Handling Your Remote Workforce?, many businesses existed thinking “when would we ever need to work from home?” You got your answer.

Despite promising a natural ERP experience, those using Macola™ had a very unnatural jump from business as usual to new normal. As we mentioned—it’s one of the dangers of your software provider’s CEO saying that you are “also a cloud company.”

Resilience: Pivot to a New Reality with Little Pain

No matter what the change is, being able to pivot is a core feature of being resilient. Rather than spending time and resources trying to get set up, users simply logged in the Monday after and kept going.

But resilience goes beyond that. The competitive landscape can change just as easily as the location you have to work from. Having the information readily available can give you a leg up.

Learn more about this in the free eBook titled The New State of Work, Building Resilience in Challenging Times.

Conclusion: Just Enough for Yesterday or Truly Future-Proof?

The business landscape gets more competitive—day after day, month after month. Being able to stand up to the continued “new reality” requires both a business model and solution that helps you know more, do more, and to stay ahead of the competition.

The COVID-19 outbreak may have been a shock to the system for some businesses, but distributors, manufacturers, and any other product-based business has been existing in a constant state of system shocks long before this.

Macola was great for yesterday’s business—but after four decades, it’s beginning to show its age. Slower decisions from company executives and developers have led to slower decisions for end users, and it’s good to ask what they’ve done for you lately.

But those committed to resilience and long-term business sustainability need a solution that’s going to deliver for today’s needs that also gives you the resilience you need for tomorrow’s decisions.

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.