Cloud computing has seen huge growth over the past few years and is revolutionising the way businesses operate. Whilst many businesses have jumped on board with the new technology, there are still a lot out there who are dubious about the business benefits of moving to the cloud and have concerns about its use. We have taken a look at some of the common myths and concerns surrounding cloud computing and aim to address these.
Myth one: Cloud computing is new
Many think the cloud still needs to evolve before it is ready for full scale use, but believe it or not, cloud computing is now reaching maturity and is continuing to grow year-on-year. Cloud adoption rates in the UK reached a staggering 84% in 2016. It isn’t a new phenomenon or fad; cloud computing is here to stay.
Myth two: Cloud computing is not secure
There is a common misconception that by moving to the cloud you are opening up your sensitive data for the world to see. In fact, 49% of IT decision makers have security concerns when it comes to cloud computing. In truth, many large security breaches in recent times have been on premise rather than in the cloud. Cloud hosting companies employ state of the art security measures to ensure data is safe – firewalls, intrusion detection systems and encryption systems to name a few.
Myth three: Cloud computing is only for tech companies
There is a belief that technologies like cloud computing are only for tech companies and “not for us”. In reality, cloud computing can benefit any type of business, big or small. You’ve been using cloud computing for personal use at home without realising and you’re not a large, multinational tech company are you. When you check your email or use online banking you are using the cloud.
Myth four: It is hassle to migrate
Moving to the cloud couldn’t be easier, especially if you’re using a provider like Pegasus. We would manage the migration for you so you would have peace of mind and a seamless transition to the cloud with minimal downtime.
Myth five: The cloud will give me less control
By moving your business into the cloud you are not giving up control. In reality you are equipping yourself with more control as you will be able to access your business information and run your business anytime and anywhere (with an internet connection).
Myth six: It’s unreliable, I’ll lose my data
You can rest assured that no data will be lost through cloud computing. This is because regular backups are performed by the server provider so your data can be fully recovered in the event of a disaster. Ask yourself truthfully, how often do you currently perform a full manual backup of your data?
Myth seven: The cloud is expensive
It is often thought that with technology comes cost and that is definitely untrue. Cloud computing is flexible and can cost as little or as much as you want. It’s fully scalable so you can add to it as your business grows and often you can pay monthly to ease the financial burden. Under our latest offer you can test drive Pegasus Business Cloud completely free for three months and save 35% if you sign up after the trial ends.
Myth eight: Cloud computing will need too much maintenance
Relax! The beauty of cloud computing is the cloud provider takes care of all maintenance needed. You won’t need to worry about backups, software upgrades or equipment maintenance as they are all taken care of so you can get on with running your business.
Whilst cloud computing is growing at an increasing rate each year, a large number of businesses do still have genuine concerns, which are intensified by the many myths surrounding cloud computing. Hopefully our blog has helped to address some of these myths and reassure you on the benefits of cloud computing.
To learn more about cloud computing, or to discuss your requirements, please contact our friendly team today.
Faced with economic volatility, ever-increasing customer demands and a necessity to do more for less, wholesale and distribution businesses are in for a rough ride. The most successful players in the wholesale and distribution sector find that margins and customer service come together to create business excellence. For businesses still searching for this winning combination, a good place to start is by looking at the systems which underpin the business to help them increase efficiencies while improving customer service. When it comes to business systems, integration is key. Linking up various and often very different business processes and functions to provide full visibility into not only all parts of the business, but into all stages of the customer journey. For example, integrating sales, purchasing and stock control can automate delivery of customer orders while ensuring effective stock management. This enables a faster, more accurate and consistent response to demand for certain products, improving customer satisfaction. It also delivers a greater level of control over pricing and margins and a firmer grasp on the management of the supply chain as a whole.
One of our customers, Bell Lighting, a leading manufacturer and supplier of light sources and fixtures to the electrical wholesale industry, invested in a new warehousing system to sit alongside their Opera 3 platform. By implementing a barcoding solution to enhance picking and packing across the warehouse, Bell Lighting increased efficiencies and boosted order fulfilment across the board. The barcoding system automates the entire picking process, from PO creation through to labelling and dispatch, showing what’s being picked, at what time and by whom. This increased level of visibility led to vastly improved inventory levels and reduced the number of missed deliveries to zero, which for a business with 1200 different SKUs, which processes approximately 300 POs each day, is no mean feat.
It’s not only through supply chain management that warehousing and distribution businesses can make a real difference to margins and customer service levels. The right CRM tools again integrate with the rest of the business, providing a clear line of sight of the customer from prospect stage right through to taking delivery of items. By never losing sight of a customer, businesses can ensure they never miss an opportunity to proactively manage the customer relationship, boosting customer satisfaction levels, greatly increasing the longevity of customer relationships, and ultimately paving the way for future business growth.
For wholesale and distribution businesses to increase efficiencies and customer service levels, investing in robust, scalable business solutions is a must. It’s only with such systems in place that organisations can have access to the comprehensive, business-wide information that’s key to underpinning the right business decisions, ensuring profitable margins. These very same systems also bring process automation, helping to improve accuracy and delivering real efficiency while guaranteeing optimum levels of customer satisfaction. For businesses looking to lead the way it really should be a case of all systems go, with wise investments today ensuring success for the future.
For more information on how o-a-sys can help your wholesale and distribution business, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The rise of mobile and cloud technology has made the possibility of flexible working a reality for many businesses and their employees, who would have once needed to be at their desks in order to get the job done. Cloud software and technological developments mean that employees really can now be anywhere and get on with their job as efficiently as if they were at their desk, as long as there is an internet connection. With this in mind, we have taken a closer look at some of the pros and cons of flexible working from the employer point of view.
Pros of flexible working for employers
1. More motivated employees
2. Greater efficiency if staff are working instead of commuting
3. Reduced turnover of valued staff
4. Lower absenteeism rates
5. Looks good for you as an employer – putting employees first
6. People can work when they feel most productive, even if this is outside the 9-5 hours
7. Attract talented workforce to whom flexible working is appealing
8. Promotes a diverse workforce
Cons of flexible working for employers:
1. Arranging group meetings can become difficult
2. Trust required
3. Disjointed projects can occur
4. Some people may take advantage
5. Disgruntled employees who need to be office based6. May become difficult to monitor performance
7. Communication breakdown may occur
When it comes to flexible working, there are many pros and cons but ultimately your business structure will determine if flexible working will truly benefit your organisation. Some employees might be needed in the office for meetings and to communicate regularly with other departments, whereas other employees might be fine to adopt a flexible approach. However, whatever your structure, technological developments have certainly made it possible to work anytime, anywhere.
For more information about how cloud software can help you adopt a flexible approach, or to learn how it could benefit your business, take a look at Pegasus Business Cloud .
With continually squeezed margins resulting in the ever-present need to do more with less, set against a backdrop of ongoing economic and political uncertainty, the manufacturing sector is facing some of its toughest times. In spite of this, the pressure is still on to capitalise on growth opportunities wherever possible, proactively pursuing new avenues to steal that all-important march on the competition.
Without a doubt, effective IT systems are a key enabler of growth, but where larger, less agile manufacturers may struggle to change course to chart new waters, SMEs are often in a stronger position to capitalise on growth opportunities, unencumbered as they are by restrictive legacy systems. But, with smaller IT budgets to work with, the benefit of being legacy-free can be somewhat curtailed by the pressure to make the right IT investment first time. SMEs not only need to invest in the right capabilities, but also to ensure they’re investing in capabilities that will work with what they’ve already spent money on. For example, there’s no point investing in a CRM system with a view to boosting service levels if it’s not integrated with wider business processes. Simply bolting on ill-considered solutions will only serve to add another level of complexity to operations, rather than adding value.
Many SMEs have found that having a single, integrated system in place to support all areas of the business is far more practical and cost-efficient than investing in a series of process-specific systems and solutions. A single solution that sits across the business, drawing in information from all departments and areas, is a much more effective way of improving processes. This ability to offer up-to-date information about precisely what’s happening means that such solutions deliver the levels of visibility and insight that manufacturers need in order to grow.
With a robust, scalable platform in place integrating all systems and processes across the entire operation manufacturers can pursue growth, adding new capabilities as and when required. Take Bell Lighting, a leading manufacturer and supplier of light sources and fixtures to the electrical wholesale industry: having experienced rapid growth in a relatively short time, Bell Lighting recognised the need to invest in infrastructure to support this expansion. With an incumbent Opera 3 deployment already bringing together all key areas of the business, it made sense to add to it and extend its reach with the addition of a new warehouse system. Not only has the new solution boosted efficiency in the warehouse, but the fact that it’s linked to all other processes via Opera 3 has resulted in improved visibility throughout the organisation. So, by automating the entire picking process (from PO through to labelling and dispatch), showing what’s being picked and by whom, it adds a whole new level of visibility for Bell Lighting, improving accuracy, efficiency and ultimately enhancing customer service levels.
By taking a step-by-step approach, with a focus on effectively gathering and using timely, accurate business information, manufacturers can optimise basic processes while benefiting from the levels of control and visibility that are necessary for growth. Incorporating seemingly mundane yet vital functions into business-wide IT systems enables a manufacturer to build a comprehensive picture of their operation and processes, with precise data at their fingertips. It’s only with this level of insight and control that manufacturers can expect faster, more effective decision-making, increased agility and, ultimately, continued growth.
When it comes to running your business, the question is not why move to the cloud, but when? More and more businesses are moving to cloud based accounting systems and the reason is simple. In fact, there are ten of them:
All your data is backed up in the cloud regularly so you can rest assured your sensitive data is accessible should the worst happen.
As long as you have an internet connection you can work anywhere, anytime. On the train, in the hotel, on the beach and yes, even in the bar!
Paper systems are time consuming and are notorious for errors. By moving online you can quickly and easily correct mistakes, and stop them occurring in the first place.
4. Up-to-date software
Cloud based software is updated by the server provider so no more “upgrade software” pop ups and lengthy downtime needed. You’ll always be working on the newest, most efficient release.
5. Ditch the paper
Paper takes up a lot of room! Moving to cloud based software means you can ditch the paper once and for all and clear your desk at the same time. Plus it’s better for the environment.
Cloud based accounting software is scalable so you can add applications and users easily and quickly as your business grows.
7. Share information easily
With cloud based accounting software you can share information and reports with key employees across your business easily to improve visibility and speed up decision making.
8. Virus protection
You don’t need to worry about a thing when it comes to anti-virus protection as it’s all covered by the cloud server provider. Plus, they are so hot on security that you can rest assured you’ll be covered by the best protection out there.
9. Reduce total cost of ownership
No local servers are needed and there is no need to invest in hardware.
10. Flexible payment
No large upfront costs are needed; you can pay monthly with manageable monthly repayments. For a limited time you can try Pegasus Business Cloud absolutely free for three months! What’s more if you decide to sign up after your trial you’ll save 35% (terms and conditions apply).
When you look at the benefits of moving to cloud based accounting software it seems a no brainer. So, the question is when are you making the move? Contact us for more information about Pegasus Business Cloud and Opera 3.
Join the o-a-sys team on Wednesday 5th July at Wye to see how you can build your software and learn more about cloud computing and protecting your software from cyber crime. For more details and to book your free places visit our events page .
Cyber-attacks are becoming increasingly common, with some very high profile cases hitting the news recently proving that almost any organisation large or small is at risk. In fact, research by Symantec found that 75% of businesses have suffered some form of cyber-attack in the past year. When you’ve got highly sensitive business data locked away, the consequences of it falling into the wrong hands or becoming inaccessible can be dire. Let’s look at some of the key steps every business should be taking to protect themselves from cyber-crime and viruses.
1) Set strong passwords
It goes without saying that you should never share your passwords or use any personal data such as names, addresses or important dates. Strong passwords typically contain 8-10 characters and contain a mix of letters, numbers and at least one capital letter. You should also consider refreshing your passwords every 90 days.
2) Put up a firewall
Firewalls protect your entire network by controlling the traffic that comes in and out of your business. They’re an essential for any business large or small.
3) Install anti-virus protection
Should an unwanted visitor be able to access your network, anti-virus and anti-malware software will offer some protection to your devices.
4) Update software regularly
There is little point investing in top of the range technology if you are not going to maintain it. Regular updates should be performed to make sure it’s security protection is up-to-date and ready to protect you from the most recent viruses and cyber threats.
5) Secure mobile devices
Many businesses now rely on employees working remotely on their laptops, tablets and mobile phones. This is great for flexible working but poses a significant security threat if they get lost or stolen. A simple but effective step is to encrypt your devices so the data can only be read if the correct password is entered.
6) Perform data back-ups regularly
If you lose your data, you’re in big trouble. Performing regular backups will help ease the impact if you were to lose your data. Backups should be performed at least once a week to an external hard drive or the cloud. If you’re using cloud based software like Pegasus Business Cloud this is done automatically by the cloud server provider for ease and extra peace of mind. matters.
7) Remind your employees of internet dangers
It’s easy for unsuspecting employees to click on dubious links in emails without knowing they were harmless, and before you know it, the majority of your organisation has been struck down by a nasty virus. It doesn’t hurt to send out reminder emails to staff from time-to-time recapping the dangers of clicking on links from unknown sources. Your IT department will thank you for it.
Unfortunately in today’s climate, you are never going to eliminate the risk of cyber-attacks completely, as even the largest of organisations have found recently. However by implementing some of the above steps you are making every effort to proactively manage the risk. Setting strong passwords, implementing firewalls, staying on top of updates, educating employees and regularly backing up your data are very simple, yet effective steps for keeping your business safe.
Join the o-a-sys team and J & J Systems UK Limited on Wednesday 5th July at Legoland Windsor as we discuss Pegasus Software and Cyber Crime. For more information and to book your places visit www.o-a-sys.co.uk/how-will-you-build-your-software
Pegasus CIS: Contract Costing Friday 27th October 2017 at 10am Join us in this webinar where we’ll look at how you can simply manage all aspects of Contract Costing: learn how you manage your projects profitably, spot cost overruns at the earliest stage, and chase overdue Applications and Certificates, to ensure that your projects are brought in on time and within budget.
Pegasus CIS: Subcontractor Management Friday 24th November 2017 at 11:30am Join us in this webinar where we’ll look at how you can simply manage all aspects of your CIS subcontractors: learn how you can process subcontractor invoices, applications and timesheets, withhold both CIS tax and retention, pay subcontractors and produce payment certificates and the CIS300 monthly return.
o-a-sy Customer Christmas Event Join the o-a-sys team on Friday 1st December at Port Lympne as we celebrate 2017 and look forward to 2018
Pegasus CIS: Payment Applications Friday 15th December 2017 at 11:30 am Join us in this webinar where we’ll look at how you can simply manage all aspects of producing Payment Applications: learn how you can record valuations and measurements, convert these to Payment Applications and process the related Certificates. We will show you how VAT can be processed, and how to apply for your Retention to ensure it gets paid when it’s due.
Pegasus CIS: Plant Hire Friday 26th January 2018 at 11:30am Join us in this webinar where we’ll look at how you can simply manage all aspects of your Plant Hire: learn how to manage hiring the equipment required on your projects and ensure that it’s taken off-site when no longer required to prevent incurring unnecessary costs. If you have your own internal plant, we’ll show you how easy it can be to move it onto your own projects or even to hire it out to your customers.