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This may be a strange question, but once on the cloud, how easy is it to move off the cloud to a more traditional ERP system, i.e., say the company is acquired and the acquiring company doesn't want to be on the cloud? (Webinar Attendee Question)

This question was asked by an attendee during the Proformative webinar "A CFO Story: When It's Time to Upgrade Financial Systems & Do it Right - Hello Cloud Accounting" held on November 1, 2012.

A video of this webinar can be viewed here: https://www.proformative.com/resources/webinar-video-cfo-story-when-its-time-upgrade-financial-systems

Answers

Thomas Brennan
Title: VP of Marketing
Company: FinancialForce.com
(VP of Marketing, FinancialForce.com) |

It is similar to traditional ERP in that you will have to go through a conversion from one system to another. There are tools available on the Force.com to pull transaction and balance history, the chart of accounts, customer and vendor masters etc. You will then need an import tool in your on-premises based system to import the data you are interested in carrying over.

Scott Boedigheimer
Title: VP of Business Development
Company: Stoneridge Software
(VP of Business Development, Stoneridge Software) |

In the past year I moved two different on-premise solutions to cloud-based solutions in my role as a CFO for a small consulting firm. We couldn't have been happier with the decision to move to the cloud.

I think there is a perception that cloud-based means one size fits all and that is not the case. Cloud based solutions allow for configuration and customization and the tools necessary to make them fit your business are often easier to use than their on-premise counterparts.

I have found the integration tools to migrate the data are often better for the cloud-based tools as well. Think of most cloud-based solutions as Enterprise class applications that are provided at a price point for smaller companies. There is no way many small companies could afford to deploy the caliber of those solutions if that had to do so on-premise; they just couldn't afford the infrastructure and maintenance costs.

I can't come up with a solid list of reasons why any small or medium sized business would want to stay with an on-premise solution unless what they do is so specialized that the cloud-based solutions don't have those features.

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