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5 Advantages of Cloud-based Software for Nonprofits

dashboard with statistics and dates

As a nonprofit, your software solutions need to deliver a high ROI while catering to the unique needs of your organization. That means you need to carefully consider every aspect of the technology you want before you buy it and implement it.

One choice that many nonprofits worry about is whether they should move business applications to the cloud. Cloud-based applications can have disadvantages for certain organizations, but for many nonprofits the positive effects outweigh the drawbacks.

So is the cloud a good choice for your unique nonprofit? Here are some of the advantages your organization can expect from moving to a cloud-based solution:

1. Easier data management and better integrations

Cloud-based applications are designed to make integration and data collection easier. You can integrate two cloud-based applications, integrate between cloud and on-premises systems, and connect pretty much any combination of software and data you might need. Additionally, cloud-based infrastructure is often designed to handle and process large volumes of data so your organization can use analytics to better achieve your mission. All in all, this means better data and deeper insight for your nonprofit.

2. Better remote access

Generally speaking, remote access for cloud-based applications is faster, easier and more secure. The cloud can be accessed from anywhere, anytime, so your employees don’t need to store sensitive information on laptops or thumb drives. They can simply log in to a secure server from any device. This not only improves employee collaboration—it helps volunteers and staff serve members from any location. Cloud-based applications are often designed for mobility and remote workers.

3. Greater data security

It’s critical for your nonprofit to keep sensitive private information safe—and cybersecurity threats continue to rise. Cloud-based solutions are hosted securely by organizations that can dedicate a lot of resources to keep up with the latest in cybersecurity. If you’re working with a reputable cloud vendor, you’ll experience a higher quality of data security compared to what many nonprofits can handle themselves with on-premises solutions and limited IT resources and budgets.

4. Reduced costs

With cloud-based systems, you’ll no longer need to invest in buying and maintaining physical servers. Additionally, automatic regular updates mean that you won’t need to invest in new software or expense upgrades. Lastly, your IT budget will be lower because you no longer need to troubleshoot your own hardware and software.

The flexible pricing options available for cloud solutions can also save you substantial money on the cost of the software itself. You can choose to completely own and host software, in which case you’ll pay more upfront cost. Or you can choose a subscription-based model, which means you’ll have a predictable monthly expense. Implementations for cloud solutions are typically faster than on-premises solutions, saving you even more money.

5. More tasks can be automated

In large part because cloud-based systems are easier to integrate, users can automate more processes and spend less time manually re-entering or consolidating data between solutions. Also, with the latest cloud ERP and CRM solutions for nonprofits, you can customize workflows specifically for your operations and simplify tasks from end to end. By helping your employees save time on recurring tasks, you’ll free them up to work on your mission.

Want to learn more about cloud-based ERP?

Read our eBook to learn 18 questions every business leader should ask about the cloud, or contact us today to talk to an expert about cloud-based solutions for nonprofits. Here at OTT, Inc., we follow a proven 5-step methodology to ensure that every organization we work with gets the best out of their investments in new technology.

By |2021-12-11T07:52:15-06:00February 5, 2020|

4 Tips to Put Field Service Data into Action

Field Service IOT chart

Business who offer field services face plenty of unique challenges, but at the top of that list is how to keep customer satisfaction up without losing money. New technologies like IoT-connected equipment, cloud platforms, self-service portals, and integrated solutions like Dynamics 365 Field Service make it possible for businesses to do more than ever before in terms of automation and data collection. However, many field service centers still struggle with knowing exactly how to take advantage of all that data.

What’s the difference between data and analytics?

Many businesses have trouble bridging the gap from simply collecting data, to figuring out how to use it as an advantage. After all, knowing how long it takes for a work order to get completed isn’t helpful information all by itself. For example, you need to know what the service order was for, how long it took relative to other service orders, how much it cost, how much money you made or lost, and how you can do better next time. Basically, you need analytics to help you turn data into intelligence that helps you understand how to make continuous improvements to the entire field service journey.

So how can your organization put data into use? How can you make sure you’re actually using your data to get ahead?

1. Empower employees throughout your organization with access to analytics

Data and analytics shouldn’t just be for the top-level executives in your organization. The more people who have access to helpful information, the better. Everyone at every level of the business should be able to access the data that’s relevant to their jobs and use analytic tools so they can understand that data and do things better.

For example, imagine if your field service technicians could track their own goals and performance—in real time. What if they could see on their device at the time of the service call the top reasons certain equipment types malfunction, common parts needed, and estimated time to task completion. Or, access to information about customer preferences and histories to make recommendations. Any and all of this information can help your technicians provide better customer service, get the job done faster, boost first-time fix rates and increase profit.

2. Tools should be self-service

For data to be helpful, users also need to be able to tailor their analytics to their specific needs without extensive IT intervention. This enables users to ask questions and then find their own answers in a timely fashion, without having to wait for external assistance. Make sure your analytics applications can be easily modified to suit user needs.

3. Focus on what you want to gain

What are your goals for your data? Field service centers that adopt advanced analytics commonly see increases in service profits, first-time fix rates, SLA performance, and customer retention. Your business should define what sort of benefits you want to see from your analytics, and then tailor your metrics around meeting those goals. Identify best practices and organizational pain points, then set goals for rewarding high performance and improving problem areas.

4. Connect data across different departments

Much of the data problem is caused by multiple systems trapping data in silos. In order to truly understand the big picture in a way that’s helpful, you need to be able to fully connect data across every part of your business. For example, you need to see the relationship between equipment performance and revenue, or how customer service and technician visits relate to customer retention. Having an integrated platform for your business applications is key.

Finding the right analytics tools

Does your organization have the right solutions for analyzing your data? Do you have a plan for connecting your field service management with your financial accounting and other solutions? OTT, Inc. helps businesses like yours connect technology to boost success. Contact us today to learn more about Dynamics 365, Microsoft Azure, integrating your business solutions, and our proven 5-step methodology.  

By |2021-02-18T15:09:31-06:00January 29, 2020|

2020 Nonprofit Technology Trends to Watch

Over here. No, Over here

As we look into 2020, it’s time for nonprofits to look ahead to the future. OTT, Inc. technology consultants are always anticipating business challenges for nonprofits, as well as emerging technologies that can solve those challenges. Here are a few of the big nonprofit technology trends to watch in 2020.

1. Modernizing fundraising

Every year, donors have more options for nonprofits to support. Additionally, they’re coming to expect and demand that the nonprofits they do support can provide proof of excellent fiscal management. In 2020, nonprofits will be tackling this challenge by implementing modern fundraising and donor management solutions.

Use these tools to improve the effectiveness of fundraising from start to finish:

  • Intelligent analytics to understand giving patterns, volunteer needs, and common donor characteristics so your nonprofit knows your audience better than peer organizations
  • Sophisticated marketing tools for targeted messaging and a more personalized experience for potential donors or volunteers
  • Mobile apps that make it fast and easy for people to donate to your cause
  • A centralized donor management database and consistent, automated, secure communications across multiple channels
  • Integrated financial management tools and customizable reporting so you can accurately track and transparently share information with donors and stakeholders

2. Cloud software adoption

Each year more nonprofits realize the benefit of adopting cloud-based software solutions for their organization, and in 2020 this trend will continue to accelerate. Reduced IT costs, predictable monthly subscriptions, and regular automatic updates make cloud-based solutions affordable to implement. Once adopted, cloud-based solutions facilitate time-saving automation of daily processes, improved financial management, mobile accessibility, and better scalability when your organization grows.

Last but not least, cloud-based solutions typically offer stronger security and can meet the most strict compliance regulations versus storing your information in on-premises legacy systems. Storing data in the cloud protects your organization’s information and provides full accessibility in case of an emergency or natural disaster. Also, cloud data centers can afford to focus on combatting the latest cybersecurity threats so your financial data and sensitive donor information is at lower risk of being pirated.

3. Business Intelligence and Artificial Intelligence

In 2020, more nonprofits small and large will join their for-profit counterparts in taking advantage of modern artificial intelligence (AI) and predictive analytics. Analytics tools make it possible to fully understand donors, better manage finances, streamline daily operations, and focus more resources on achieving your mission. Artificial intelligence takes this one step further by automatically combining and processing complex data into helpful information so organizations can understand even more about their donors, volunteers, funds, and operations.

Curious about the many nonprofit technology options available?

Here at OTT, Inc., we understand that not-for-profit organizations operate on tight budgets and have unique needs when it comes to management solutions. That’s why we use a proven 5-step methodology, the Trusted Partner Path, to ensure we’re helping you meet your long-term goals, achieve your mission, and ensure a rapid return on your investment.  Contact us today to speak with a nonprofit technology solutions expert.

By |2021-02-18T15:09:37-06:00January 20, 2020|

3 Benefits Nonprofits Are Seeing from Today’s Technology

Team members working together

Is it worth the investment to modernizing your nonprofit’s software? If chosen and implemented correctly, the answer is a resounding yes!

In order to fulfill your mission, your nonprofit needs to effectively manage money, stay in touch with members, donors and volunteers, and make administrative tasks as efficient as possible. You want to reduce the time, resources, money, and brain power needed for administrative and accounting tasks so your efforts are focused on meeting your goals. Additionally, many donors choose to give their resources only to nonprofits with excellent financial transparency and a demonstrable history of responsible spending.

Here’s how the right nonprofit software solutions will help your nonprofit succeed:

1. Gain better financial insight

Many growing nonprofits rely on a mix of simple accounting software, manual data entry, and spreadsheets to manage their accounting. This makes it difficult to understand your own finances, much less create reports to communicate with your board and donors. With quality accounting and business management software, you can automate many of these manual processes, reduce errors, and gain better visibility into your organization’s financial and operational details.

Quality technology solutions that improve your accounting, make budgeting easier, and feature dashboards can transform your nonprofit’s finances by making it clear where money is going on a daily basis. This gives you the insight you need to make better decisions to help your nonprofit pursue its mission rather than spending too much time and money on administration.

A good accounting solution for nonprofits will also include flexible, powerful reporting that makes it easy to deliver financial transparency and provide donors and board members with detailed updates.

2. Manage donor and volunteer information more effectively

Rather than keeping donor and volunteer information in spreadsheets, clunky databases or spread across staff computers – use a nonprofit CRM solution to effectively manage donors and volunteers. The right CRM application will allow you to centralize donor and volunteer information so you can easily access, add to, and use it. With modern CRM software, it’s also possible to automatically upload information from external sources or in the field, reducing the time your workers spend on manual data entry.  

Centralizing and automating this collection of information can play a huge role in helping you improve your fundraising strategies by providing a better understanding of your donors. Easily perform complex analysis of giving patterns, donor characteristics, and volunteer trends.

3. Take advantage of the cloud

Cloud-based nonprofit management systems offer a variety of advantages:

  • The initial cost of implementation is lower due to subscription-based models.
  • The ability to simply add users and modules offers greater scalability for growing nonprofits.
  • Automatic, regular updates from your cloud provider means you’ll always have the latest technology without adding IT expenses.
  • Storing data in the cloud means reduced investment into IT and infrastructure.
  • Cloud data centers offer stronger security for keeping sensitive information.
  • Cloud-based apps are mobile-friendly and accessible from anywhere, anytime.

Considering a technology upgrade?

World Relief worked with OTT to build a streamlined case management solution with no paper forms. OTT also helped World Relief double their fundraising in 2 years and improve collaboration with this custom non-profit solution.  Read the case study.

There are countless options on the market for nonprofit management solutions. How do you figure out which one is right for your organization? Here at OTT, Inc., we use a proven 5-step methodology to assess your needs, help you choose the right solution, and help you meet your organizational goals. Contact us today to learn more.

By |2021-02-18T15:09:44-06:00November 11, 2019|

5 Ways Connected Field Service Solutions Leads to Happier Customers

Field service worker

Nowadays, all of this is changing. Technology innovations based on the cloud and Internet of Things (IoT) technology have been revolutionizing the way field service works and enabling proactive, efficient service. In turn, this is completely transforming the customer experience for the better.

Here’s how you can ensure happy customers with connected field service solutions:

1. Devices become connected with IoT networks

Internet of Things (IoT) technologies allow service centers to remotely connect devices to a centralized hub. Device status can be viewed in real time, and equipment issues send automated alerts to your system.

Using IoT technology, businesses are fundamentally transforming field service from reactive maintenance to a proactive approach. IoT connected devices send alerts to your device center when issues begin to occur; your workers can then diagnose and repair remotely, or you can send a technician with advance knowledge of the exact problem and how to fix it.

2. Customers can stay in the loop

Nobody likes to wait around not knowing exactly when a technician will show up. With real-time location tracking, customers can see exactly where a technician is en route, and view an accurate ETA. Automated alerts such as appointment reminders help customers remember when to expect a service call. Additionally, innovations within scheduling tools make it easier to optimize assignments as service requests arrive, so technicians can be rerouted or rescheduled as needed to improve response time.

3. Detailed histories enable personalized service

Best-in-class field service solutions make it easier to collect customer data and use it to provide improved service. Mobile-friendly apps allow technicians to access and add detailed customer and device histories or preferences. This information can be accessed by personnel ranging from other technicians to dispatchers to your sales team, making it possible for your workers to personalize interactions with every client.

4. Self-service customer portals

More and more, customers in all industries expect instant access to information and scheduling. Innovative field service solutions make this possible with self-service apps which allow customers to schedule their own appointments, share information about devices, and submit requests.

5. Better inventory tracking

Missing parts and low inventory are a major reason for delayed repairs and multiple service visits. Maintain happier customers and improve first-time fix rates with real-time inventory tracking tools that allow you to view which resources are where at any time. Create alerts that will automatically notify a worker if inventory levels drop below a certain threshold. Integrate inventory information with drag-and-drop scheduling so it’s easier to find and send the needed parts to the right place.

Learn more about innovative field service solutions

OTT, Inc. is proud to offer cutting-edge business management tools like Dynamics 365 Business Central, Dynamics 365 for Field Service, and Microsoft Azure Cloud that have the power to transform customer experiences. If you’d like to learn more about using connected applications to provide innovative service and help your business thrive, contact us today

By |2021-02-18T15:09:52-06:00November 10, 2019|

Can Cloud Solutions Integrate with On-Premises Solutions and Files?

Cloud and On-premise Integration

This is a common question we hear at OTT, Inc. and the answer is yes—it’s absolutely possible to integrate cloud and on-premises systems and data! This popular approach is often called a “hybrid cloud” system. There are many reasons businesses do this, including:

  • Security requirements: keep sensitive or highly regulated data on-premises, while sending workflows and other less sensitive data to the cloud.
  • Speed advantages: reduce latency by having a mix of on-premises and cloud systems.
  • Facilitating a transition: support a long-term switch from on-premises to cloud systems.

This is a process that’s often highly customized to the needs and situation of each organization. Because a wide variety of businesses integrate cloud and on-premises solutions or files, there is an infinite array of examples and options for your business to gain ideas from.

Integrations might be based on simply sending data between your on-premises and cloud solutions. Or, an integration might connect applications to enable interoperability between cloud and on-premises tools.

Although it’s impossible to cover the full set of opportunities for creating a hybrid cloud approach within your business processes, here are some examples of options for this strategy:

1. Use on-premises solutions and processes, but keep data storage, backups, or service replication in the cloud

If on-premises solutions provide exactly the functionality you need, there still might be some advantages to storing certain files in the cloud. Businesses sometimes choose to host their data in the cloud or provide backups of key services/processes.

This approach can offer many advantages for businesses, the top two of which are disaster recovery and minimizing data storage costs. Essentially, by keeping data in the cloud your business can eliminate the risk of downtime in case of server failure. Servers can fail for many reasons – ranging from hardware or software problems to a natural disaster. Additionally, if you store the bulk of your data in the cloud to begin with, you’ll reduce the expenses related to purchasing and maintaining your own servers.

2. Use hybrid cloud as part of longer-term transition

Transitioning from on-premises business solutions to cloud-based applications is a major process that can upend a business from the ground up, so for many organizations a phased approach is best. For those in the midst of moving from purely on-premises systems to a fully cloud-based approach, a hybrid cloud can help keep the transition smooth and systematic, without reducing business efficiency or creating data silos.

3. Use some cloud-based apps, but store data on-premises in order to comply with certain security requirements or regulations

For organizations in highly-regulated industries such as finance or healthcare, keeping data on-premises is often necessary in order to comply with stringent security requirements. More and more of these businesses are choosing to adopt a hybrid cloud approach in order to gain the mobility and scalability of cloud-based applications, while maintaining compliance with security and privacy regulations.

However, it’s worth noting that for businesses with a different emphasis on data security, cloud-based applications are often more secure than on-premises systems.

Should you integrate on-premises systems with the cloud?

So these integrations are flexible and common – but exactly how do they work? Are they a good idea for your business? The answer depends on several factors, including what solutions you currently use and what your business goals might be. If you’d like to talk to an expert to help you figure it all out, contact us at OTT, Inc.  We’d love to share our decades of experience in business management and intelligence solutions.

By |2021-02-18T15:10:00-06:00October 10, 2019|

Can You Customize a Cloud Application to Meet Specific Business Requirements?

Yes, you can develop custom functionality within a cloud application – and in many ways it’s easier and less expensive than customizing traditional on-premises software.

However, creating custom functionality within the cloud works a little differently than developing customizations for a traditional on-premises system. This is because cloud applications are designed differently than on-premises systems and include regular automatic updates. Custom functionality needs to be compatible with the application regardless of future updates.

Luckily, cloud ERP applications such as Microsoft Dynamics 365 or Oracle NetSuite are built with customization and flexibility in mind. They both include architecture and tools that make it fundamentally easier to develop functionality for your specific business requirements.

There are 4 basic ways you can customize functionality within a cloud application in order to meet your unique business needs:

1. Business-specific configuration

The best cloud ERP solutions are scalable and flexible, and they allow you to extensively configure settings for your business needs. When properly implemented, many businesses find that their need for developing additional customizations is minimized or even eliminated.

Understanding the configuration options and leveraging them to get the most from your software is a key reason to work with an expert solutions provider during the implementation of a new cloud application in your business.

2. Third-party apps

As businesses increasingly rely on specialized tools to increase their success, the variety of apps that have already been developed to meet specific business needs is growing exponentially. Before you consider developing customized functionality for your cloud application, it’s worth checking to see if someone else already did the work for you.

For example, for Microsoft applications, you can purchase apps from AppSource, and for Oracle NetSuite, you can shop in SuiteApps. These apps are designed to fully integrate with your primary cloud application and typically run inside the main application. They’re guaranteed to not break when automatic updates are applied to the primary cloud application, and often include their own automatic updates as well.  

2. Custom workflows

One traditional need for customizations was derived from a need to increase efficiency by automating common business processes. Cloud-based applications make it possible to do this by developing custom workflows. For example, Microsoft Flow or NetSuite SuiteFlow are both platforms that allow you to develop custom workflows within your business management system.

Common workflows might include automatic email alerts for inventory thresholds, purchase order approvals, lead nurturing, or data sharing between applications (such as your CRM and your accounting solution).

4. Custom applications and extensions

If the three previous methods don’t provide your business with the specific functionality it needs, it’s also easy to develop custom applications and extensions for your cloud solution. For example, tools within NetSuite SuiteCloud and Microsoft PowerApps make it easy to build your own apps on top of the pre-existing cloud architecture of your system.

Common examples of custom apps might include employee-facing apps, customer-facing portals to share data, or integrations between your cloud applications and on-premises tools you might use.

Want to learn more about using cloud applications to help your business thrive?

Here at OTT, Inc., we help businesses analyze their needs, find the right solutions, and implement them using our proven 5-step methodology. Contact us today to chat with one of our solutions experts about which technology solutions would best meet your unique business requirements.

By |2021-02-18T15:10:25-06:00October 3, 2019|

Connecting Dynamics 365 for Field Service and Azure IoT Central

Exactly how does Dynamics 365 for Field Service connect with an IoT network? We’ve discussed before the ways in which Dynamics 365 for Field Service can help you achieve automation and improve your first-time fix rate in the field. In this article we’re going to dive deeper into how Dynamics 365 for Field Service connects with Azure IoT Central to create a connected field service system.

The integration between Azure IoT Central and Dynamics 365 for Field Service helps your business attain:

  • Proactive field service
  • Remote fixes
  • Improved resource assignments

What is Azure IoT Central?

Azure IoT Central is a SaaS solution that leverages the power of Microsoft Azure to help you create a custom, cloud-hosted IoT solution for your organization. IoT Central improves connectivity and visibility for your network of devices, allowing greater automation and integrating with Dynamics 365 for Field Service.

Azure IoT Central takes care of the usual complexities of building an IoT network by making things easier and more scalable. You pay simply based on the number of devices you have connected, and get the security, flexibility, and power of the Azure platform. No extensive coding skills or cloud-development experience are needed to get an IoT solution up and running.

Pre-built application templates within IoT Central offer no-code and low-code options for managing your devices. You can easily configure rules to create automatic actions for device issues. For example, if a device overheats, you can choose to send an email alert, integrate with an external system, or trigger workflows within Dynamics 365 for Field Service to automatically create service tickets or schedule proactive maintenance.

What is Connected Field Service?

Connected Field Service is a direct integration between Azure IoT Central and Dynamics 365 for Field Service. This makes it easy for your organization to create cases or work orders triggered by device problems or warnings. Connected Field Service has the ability to work within Dynamics 365 for Field Service to schedule technicians for proactive maintenance or rapid fixes.

Basically, you can use Connected Field Service to multiply the power of Dynamics 365 for Field Service with the complete functionality of Azure IoT Central. Customize these integrations and applications to create any level of functionality that you want for your business, whether it’s fully automated proactive service appointments, email alerts so your own people can do the scheduling, or simply sending extra device information so you know what’s really going wrong before you send resources.

Ready to Connect Your Technologies?

Are you ready to learn more about how to transform your field service organization with top-of-the-line solutions for cloud-based automation? In addition to the capabilities of Connected Field Service, Azure IoT Central and Dynamics 365 for Field Service also have the power to integrate with any other applications within the Microsoft Dynamics 365 and Microsoft Office 365 suites.

There’s no doubt that finding and implementing a new software solution for your field service is a major step that deserves plenty of research and advance planning. That’s why OTT, Inc. uses a 5-step methodology to help customers choose, implement, and succeed with the perfect software for their needs. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help your business move forward into the era of cloud-based field service management.

By |2021-02-18T15:10:25-06:00September 16, 2019|

How to Accelerate Your Sales Funnel with CRM and Real-Time Dashboards

How do you know if your business is consistently finding the right prospects and turning them into good customers? Understanding the movement of leads through the sales funnel has traditionally been more of an art (and a best guess) than a science, but a modern sales and marketing software solution such as Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Customer Engagement offers amazing tools to transform your strategies and boost your success.

Turning marketing and sales into a science

Nowadays, it’s easier and easier to gain visibility into the marketing process. It’s possible to know exactly who downloaded that whitepaper from your website, or when they opened the article you offered in that email. As gathering information becomes simpler, is your business making the best of the data you have? If you want to improve the success of your marketing and sales efforts, you should be using CRM software to track, visualize, and share information about leads as they move through the funnel and convert into opportunities.

So how do you use a solution such as Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Customer Engagement to track your funnel and improve your marketing?

Set up customized dashboards for your team members

Modern CRM dashboards make it possible for everyone in your team to gain real-time information about every single lead that interacts with your marketing content. Each dashboard should contain helpful, engaging visuals that are relevant to the user.

A dashboard should show leads as they enter each part of the funnel. For example, somebody downloading a whitepaper can trigger an event in your CRM so they appear at the top of your funnel (TOFU) in real time. That means everyone on your team can use their dashboard to see that new lead and take the next steps. 

Measure the metrics that are most relevant

Using integrated CRM, you can track variables such as the average time for each lead to move downward towards a sale, the average attrition rate of leads over time, and the conversion rates of different marketing strategies.

Automated dashboards based on performance metrics make it easier for everyone in the company to quickly understand trends, successes, and failures in your marketing and sales efforts. This gives you the information needed to focus your efforts and optimize your marketing and sales strategies over time.

Set definitive goals, then check in frequently

Monthly sales goals simply aren’t frequent enough. Set weekly or even daily goals for each of your sales development reps, and show progress towards these goals on your dashboards. For example, you might set weekly goals for each of your team members to move 10 leads from the middle of the funnel (MOFU) to the bottom of the funnel (BOFU) by making a phone call or sending a personalized message to each lead.

If Thursday rolls around and one of your team members hasn’t helped bump a single lead to BOFU, it’s time to check in and see how things are going – have they been assigned to a particular marketing strategy that isn’t working out? Are they distracted by problems at home? Are they feeling unsuccessful and discouraged? Do they need additional training?

Weekly goals make it easy for your leadership team to quickly see which employees are thriving and which ones might be struggling. Armed with this knowledge, you can quickly adjust strategies, troubleshoot, train, or encourage as needed.

Want to learn more about using CRM to improve your sales?

These are just a few examples of how your business can use software such as Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Sales and Dynamics 365 Customer Engagement to measure and optimize your marketing efforts and help move leads through the funnel.

Here at OTT, Inc., we use our proven 5-step methodology to assess your business’s needs and find the right software solution to help you succeed. Contact us today to learn more about upgrading your CRM solution and improving your customer experience, beginning at the very top of the sales funnel.

By |2021-02-18T15:10:25-06:00September 12, 2019|

Is Cloud ERP Secure and Reliable?

Here in the Midwest, we’re proud of our culture’s reliable work ethic and our emphasis on integrity. In the modern era of big data and digital finance, this extends to the security and reliability of our software applications as well. Many businesses who are considering switching to a cloud-based ERP solution understandably have questions about the safety and security of a cloud-based system.

Download our new eBook, The Midwestern Skeptic’s Guide to Cloud ERP, to explore this topic and more. In this blog, we discuss some of the most common questions clients ask regarding the safeguards and reliability of cloud ERP applications.

1. Data Security

How does security work when your data is in the cloud? How does this compare to the security of an on-premises system? When your data is stored in the cloud, it can technically be accessed from anywhere, but only if attackers first gain access to passwords and other private information. However, a cloud-based provider is likely to have more sophisticated safeguards because they can dedicate more resources towards security than your business may be able to afford for any on-premises infrastructure. For example, cloud infrastructure is monitored 24/7 to detect and ward off potential security threats.

2. Reliability of Access

With cloud-based software, you don’t have to worry about your servers going down, because infrastructure maintenance is the cloud-service provider’s primary specialty. Also, due to the way the cloud works, you’re accessing your data on numerous servers rather than just one. That means no down time and no physical limits to where you can access your data. All you need to worry about is having a reliable internet connection.

3. Continuity of Data

One of the great benefits of the cloud vs. managing your own infrastructure is business continuity. You have the peace of mind that you don’t need to worry about losing all your data in case of some kind of disaster. Natural- and human-caused disasters are a big deal in other ways, but at least you can simply log on to your cloud-based solution from a different device and continue to access all of your information and keep the business running.

4. Continued Compliance

In the constantly changing world of technology and financial regulations, it’s critical for your business’s accounting to remain compliant. Cloud-based software will automatically apply important updates on a regular basis. That means that when laws, technology, or security changes, you can rest easy knowing that your software is going to be up-to-date and compliant.

5. Ease-of-access

Being able to easily access all your data in the cloud means that you don’t have to worry about the security of saving files on a home computer, or trying to keep track of thumb drives with sensitive information. All you need to do is log in and start working.

More Questions about Cloud ERP?

This is just an introduction to one specific topic you should research regarding cloud-based solutions, but there are other important considerations as well. To learn the 18 questions you need to ask about cloud ERP, read our eBook – The Midwestern Skeptic’s Guide to Cloud ERP. If you’d like to chat with the team of experts at OTT, Inc., contact us to learn more or request a free cloud assessment of your business’s readiness for cloud ERP.

By |2021-02-18T15:10:25-06:00July 10, 2019|
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