Global SaaS solutions allow multinational organizations to streamline and standardize operations across multiple geographies, functions, and departments – from financials and accounting management to supply chain management and customer relationship management.
Although implementing a global SaaS solution is full of challenges, the business benefits often outweigh the temporary challenges of implementation. Here are a few things that you should consider before moving forward with a global SaaS implementation as part of your organization’s cloud strategy:
Global SaaS Implementation Considerations
1. Non-Standardized Business Processes
If you have multiple offices in different countries, you’re already familiar with the issues that can arise from running separate ERP systems or point solutions for each function at each facility. A global SaaS implementation provides an opportunity to standardize processes across locations and helps unify the entire business by enabling and simplifying the use of best practices globally. It provides a single view into operations across multiple locations – meaning fewer resources are required to manage data, information flows quicker through the organization, and the management is able to make better decisions.
2. Manual Account Reconciliation
Financial reports in most local offices are manually reconciled for global consumption. This process is time-consuming and error-prone especially when reports originate from locations with vastly different tax and legal regulations. An automated reconciliation process helps reduce the errors arising due to multiple spreadsheets and manual data processing. Using a global SaaS solution to consolidate financial and operational data also helps reduce financial close times, as finance departments no longer have to depend on local teams for information.
3. Multiple Tax and Legal Frameworks
Regulatory changes in one location can have unforeseen impacts on the global business. Compliance with local accounting and legal standards can be challenging but is necessary for successful global operations. A global SaaS solution should have strong localization capabilities to handle multiple financial and tax regulations and should provide the flexibility to manage data and transactions in local languages and currencies. It ensures that the documentation and information your customers receive always reflects the latest tax and currency updates for their location.
4. Master Data Management
Master data management is an important but often overlooked aspect of an effective global SaaS initiative. Master data including customer, supplier, and inventory information must be cleansed and migrated to the new system, and organizations need to define how it will be managed in the future. For example, will local entities have the flexibility to govern their local data, or will they require global, centralized governance?
5. Localized Training Programs
Localizing your training content ensures technical consistency and messaging that meets local needs and expectations. Coordinate with local stakeholders and adapt your training courses to meet the global needs of your organization. If your global implementation involves migrating from multiple legacy systems, each system must have its own transition process and the training of personnel must be different at each location.