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The successful approach to an accounting systems project should be firmly based upon the concept that you are “implementing a solution” rather than simply “installing the software.” There is a profound difference between the two that must be kept in mind. “Installing the software” is a straight-forward and simple step for most modern accounting software systems. In many cases the finance software installation follows a basic wizard process that will have no operational or organizational impact on its own. “Implementing an accounting software solution” is a much more complex undertaking that can achieve a fundamental impact on an company’s operations and strategic goals.

The key objective should be implementing a strategic accounting system solution; that is a financial system that directly contributes to the enterprise's business strategies or go to market initiatives. Some of the beginning characteristics of strategic, value added financial solutions include the following:

  • Meets fundamental accounting requirements: This seems basic, but a good system will meet a high percentage of the company's current and planned back-office functional requirements for both the business and the end users;

  • Deployed in the shortest possible timeframe: A rapid implementation will start delivering benefit sooner in the cycle and provide fewer distractions to the core business;

  • Deployed with a minimum cost; Excess implementation costs often do not translate to incremental operational value.

  • Easy to maintain: Ease of maintenance means that the system is more likely to actually be maintained and adjusted to changing business conditions;

  • Reliable in operation: In order to be fully adopted, the system needs to be bug free and produce predictable, consistent results;

  • Easy to use; and,

  • Flexible: The business and its requirements will change so the system will need to be easily adjustable.

In short, the ideal finance system will meet the company's requirements by adding value, solving problems, increasing efficiencies, decreasing cycle times and aligning to the company's most strategic objectives. There are several more detailed ways in which an accounting software system can add value to your enterprise.

  • Create Competitive advantage: competitive advantage can be created by reducing costs, adding efficiencies, or allowing the business to compete in new markets;

  • Gain market share: In a growing market, increased efficiencies can allow lower prices and decreased backlog time which will contribute to gains in market share;

  • Retain market share: In a static or retracting market, those same efficiencies will protect your margins and your existing market share;

  • Provide differentiated services or products: Better accounting, product and supply chain visibility and management can allow you to offer different, more flexible products and services than your competitors;

  • Create barriers to competitive entry: With efficiencies that maximize margins, decrease cycle times and provide decision makers with real-time management information, an effective accounting system deployment can be a significant barrier to entry for potential competitors;

  • Become a low cost provider: Reducing inventory carrying cost, improving supply chain efficiency, improving billing accuracy, and accelerated cash management all help to reduce your costs. Pass these along to the customer and you can lead your market; and

  • Increase the switching costs for the customer: By integrating your customer’s and provider’s supply chains, you increase their costs to do business with another organization and make it more convenient to do business with your company.

The financial software system you choose, and the effort to correctly design and implement that information system will vary dramatically from business to business. The fundamental strategy, however, will not differ as each implementation should always include proper consideration of how the solution will be used in the business, what training is required, preparation of user procedures, testing, and all the other steps of a comprehensive methodology.

By planning on how to use the accounting software system to solve operational problems while also focusing on how the accounting application will align in the support of the company's most pressing business objectives, the accounting system can be used to strategically advance the finance department and the organization’s mission in parallel.

On Demand ERP Systems  

Finance Strategy

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Accounting Strategy
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Competitive Advantage

Increased Market Share
Lower Cycle Times
Greater Productivity
Financial Metrics
Management Reporting


tags Tags:
erp business strategy
accounting software strategy, erp software objectives, enterprise resource planning applications, crm, accounting software best practices, sap, oracle, epicor, hosted accounting apps, on-demand accounting software, saas, infor, software as a service
















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