Everyone is talking about the cloud, especially manufacturers who are evaluating a cloud ERP solution for their business. However, if you don’t quite follow what they’re saying, it comes down to this—using the cloud is using data and systems through the Internet.

How You Already Interact With Cloud Technology

While The Cloud may seem like an abstract idea, you likely already interact with and use cloud technologies every day.

  • Do you update a Facebook profile?
  • Do you check your bank balance from your phone?
  • Do you stream movies or music?
  • What about playing games online?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, you are using cloud technology.

Cloud technology has truly permeated into our everyday lives. Now ask yourself, is it as simple for businesses to leverage cloud technology? The answer is yes.

Businesses leveraging cloud technology improve operations in a number of ways. Examples include improving your cash flow, increasing business capabilities, and simplifying processes for their workforce. All these benefits are realized through the use of an access-from-anywhere platform that is more reliable than traditional ERP deployments that place hardware on-premises.

How Cloud Makes Innovating Easier

By enabling cloud technology at every level of an organization, businesses remove the anxiety associated with security, backups, and verification of backups. Offsite storage becomes a thing of the past and maintenance of hardware and software can be done away with completely. Troubleshooting and upgrades can all be handled with a fraction of the effort.
Perhaps most importantly, connectivity is more reliable in the cloud. This means teams can remain connected and productive anywhere and anytime they need.

Manufacturers questioning whether now is the time to move to the cloud, the answer is a resounding yes. Cybersecurity, IT projects, maintenance activities and more can be removed from the equation with a cloud ERP solution. This leaves your businesses to take care of the business, make time for customers, employees, and partners.

Simplicity And Dependability of a Cloud ERP Solution

On-premise ERP deployments give businesses a sense of confidence that their data is safely stored just down the hall. While that peace of mind and control is reassuring in theory, in practical terms it can be quite a drain on your IT staff. Maintaining both hardware and software is a headache most IT departments would gladly do without. Cloud enables businesses to shed the tether of physical systems in favor of a more agile and simple solution. With a cloud ERP solution, your teams can focus on running your business more efficiently and taking better care of your customers’ experience.

Cloud ERP solutions operate under the safety of redundancy. Cloud technologies store data securely in multiple data centers locally, regionally, and even globally. This dependability is designed to help businesses maintain system uptime and access no matter what adverse conditions may befall a specific region. These data centers are managed by industry professionals whose sole focus is keeping systems up and running at optimal levels. This frees up resources and capital for your business to focus on growth and improving user experiences across departments. As a result, collaboration among internal teams gets better, the complexity of your information technology resources is reduced, and overall business performance improves.

“The rise of the collaborative workforce and workspace is underway. Increasingly, tech-savvy mobile users are ready for collaborative workspaces with deep integrations to the software they use daily. Collaboration is a key element that helps create the future of work.”

– Worldwide Team Collaborative Applications Forecast, 2019–2023: Collaboration Growth Impacts the Future of Work, IDC, Doc #US44662619, August 2019.

If your business is in t he progress of growing or you want to grow, adopting a cloud ERP solution could be an easy way to increase capacity and output without taking on additional software, hardware, or IT personnel. A cloud ERP solution can be scaled up or down with ease, as well.

Savings found in the Cloud

Cloud ERP Solutions are a cost savings component of business that reduces overhead.

What’s overhead? simply put, overhead is what doesn’t make you money. This includes things like accounting, insurance, and rent.

Antiquated approaches to IT can be a huge source of spending for businesses with maintenance, update tasks, and utility bills, not to mention the extra space servers take up. When working in the cloud, the costs of doing business are driven down. Here’s how.

Reduced Cost of Ownership

Cloud computing removes upfront hardware costs, and the pay-as-you-go subscription model eliminates large initial layouts for software. Easy setup and cashflow-friendly monthly payments make it even easier to see why cloud deployments are so popular—especially when you add the fact that Epicor cloud business software deployments typically cost 25–40% less* than on-premises deployments.

Competitive Advantage

Technology allows your employees to turn on a dime. The cloud provides access to data at a user’s fingertips, ensuring that no matter your company’s size you are able to compete with enterprise-class technology. The time and money cloud computing frees up for your business translates into a lean, nimble, and competitive advantage.

Employee Productivity and Loyalty

With cloud ERP solutions, you can run your business from anywhere there’s an internet connection. Give your employees the ability to produce wherever they happen to be. This enables better work-life balance that translates to greater loyalty and output. With improved employee loyalty and buy-in, talent turns over less often, this further improves your savings in retaining talent versus having to train new employees more often.

Minimize Downtime With a Cloud ERP Solution

Downtime can cost a company dearly. Cloud ERP solutions can ensure your apps are up and running when you need them most. Cloud-based SaaS applications are proven to minimize downtime, reduce the costs that go along with it, and keep your people productive. Epicor ERP has a service level agreement of 99.5% uptime, but performs well beyond that promise with a historical uptime of 99.98%.

Safety, Stability, And Access

Backups are an integral part of any IT department. However, when your backups are stored on-site, you are vulnerable to all manner of internal and external compromise. This can include natural disasters, fire, rogue employees, malicious actors, and the list goes on. any one of these mentioned exposures could cost you irreplaceable data.

The Cloud is the only truly safe place for your backups, because they are house where natural disasters, fires, and all those other potential pitfalls can’t touch them. True backup—the safekeeping of a redundant set of data—is best left to the cloud. It’s the safest, most affordable, and most efficient way to make sure that if you lose everything, all is not lost.

When it comes to stability, cloud systems are simply more stable, better monitored, and more secure than any on-premises system. Unless you have an impenetrable data center protected by intrusion detection, fire suppression, advanced power grids, backup generators, environmental monitoring, and six separate HVAC units inspected every day—all connected by multiple T3 pipelines from multiple vendors and all in a distant geographic location—you’re not as safe as you think.

Accessibility, as in who you want to have access to your systems and who you want to keep out, is a big deal in IT. Add to that lost devices and you’ve compounded the problem. In fact, lost laptops are a billion-dollar business problem. However, the greater problem is the loss and possible theft of the sensitive data stored on those laptops. When your data is stored in the cloud, you can access it no matter what, no matter where. Not only this, but you can lock out anyone when it comes to using that device and you can remotely wipe data from lost laptops at any time.

Now, are you ready to explore the benefits of a Cloud ERP solution for your business?


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Epicor has announced the upcoming Epicor ERP Cloud 11.1.100 upgrade in April 2021. Epicor ERP Cloud E11 is a major product upgrade and represents decades of the Epicor manufacturing expertise fully reimagined for today’s modern workforce and digital business. Given such depth of enhancements in this upgrade, the standard testing timeframe for customers on cadence has been extended from four weeks to seven weeks.

Epicor ERP 11 will become generally available in mid-June, 2021.

What’s New in Epicor ERP 11.1.100

More details will be released in the near future, but a few highlights include:

  • A transformed user experience
    Enjoy the fresh look and intuitive design of all your most-used screens and forms – now accessible in a web browser – as the user experience transformation is getting closer to completion.
  • Expanded capabilities of Application Studio
    Your daily users will appreciate what your power users already know – This robust low/no code toolset is more feature-rich and intuitive to help even the casual user personalize screens to work faster and smarter.
  • Improved Help & Support Panel
    With so many new features, it’s important to have quick and easy access to help when you need it. The Help & Support panel now features familiar type-ahead predictive search results and more ways to personalize your favorite topics.

Date​

Event

​Details

Tuesday, April 6, 2021 &

Wednesday​ April 7, 2021

Upgrade webinars Upgrade webinars are held, recorded, and posted as documentation in EpicWeb. Please plan to join or watch the replay so you are aware of the upgrade process. Webinar registration information will be sent mid-March.

Friday, April 9, 2021

Deadline for Flex customers 

Deadline for customers purchasing the Flex option to submit an EpicCare ticket indicating your preference to defer your upgrade to one of the alternate upgrade dates listed below

Friday, April 16, 2021 –

Saturday, April 17, 2021

Pilot system upgrade to 11.1.100.0 During this time, your Pilot system and additional environments will be unavailable while Epicor performs your upgrade, but don’t worry—your Production system will not be affected by the new release. Once it is complete, log in to your Pilot system (and other environments) to start exploring what’s new.

Friday, April 16, 2021 –

Saturday, April 17, 2021

Extended testing timeline

There are seven weeks to test in Pilot. Between the upgrade to Pilot to Production, there will be two updates for customers on cadence.

Tuesday, May 11, 2021

Pilot system update to 11.1.100.2 Your Pilot system and additional environments will be updated to include quality enhancements.

Tuesday, June 1, 2021

Pilot system update to 11.1.100.3

This will be the second and last update before the upgrade to Production

Tuesday, June 1, 2021

UBC Opt-In Deadline

  • Multitenant and Express customers (legacy cloud customers)
    If Multitenant and Express customers want Epicor to move your UBCs from your Pilot environment to your Production environment, you must submit an EpicCare  ticket to opt-in to the process. If you do not submit an EpicCare ticket to opt-in to the process, the UBCs from your Pilot environment will not be moved by Epicor to the Production environment.
  • Public Cloud customers
    Dedicated tenant customers that would like to move your UBCs from your Pilot environment to Production environment, please refer to KB0035160 for instructions, or attend the complimentary “Learn How to Manage Your Unique Business Components” course from Epicor University.

Saturday, June 5, 2021​ –

​Sunday, June 6, 2021

Production system upgrade to 11.1.100.3

Your upgrade weekend arrives! While Epicor upgrades your production system to Epicor Cloud ERP 11.1.100.3, your system will be unavailable for several hours during this time.

*Note that dates are subject to change.

How to Prepare For The Epicor ERP Cloud 11.1.100 Upgrade

Epicor will upgrade your Pilot system and any additional environments seven weeks before Production for customers on cadence. This will provide an opportunity to explore the  functionality updates in 11.1.100 without affecting your Production system.

As a best practice, please use this time to review and make any necessary changes to your Unique Business Components (UBCs)—custom reports, BAQs, BPMs, User Interface customizations, etc.—to ensure everything continues to operate as expected. There will be more information regarding sample test plans and more that will be made available to you on EpicWeb Documentation.

Flexing Your Epicor ERP Cloud 11.1.100 Upgrade

Subscribers to the Epicor Public Cloud Flex Option can follow the same schedule, but you have the option to defer your upgrade to Epicor Cloud ERP 11.1.100. Below are the two date options for your flex upgrade. Please note the deferred upgrades still have the usual four weeks to test. If you are a Premium Flex Test subscriber, please communicate your preferences by the same deadline and process below.

Pilot ​Production
​Option 1: ​Week of June 21, 2021 ​July 24-25, 2021
​Option 2: ​Week of July 19, 2021 ​August 21-22, 2021

Pilot upgrade dates will be communicated closer to the date.

If you choose to defer, you must submit an EpicCare ticket by Friday, April 9 with your selected upgrade date (Option 1 or Option 2) and we will send you a personalized confirmation with your instructions. We must receive your deferral no later than Friday, April 9. If you do not choose to defer, we’ll keep you on cadence and automatically upgrade your system in June 2021.

Note: If you choose to defer your upgrade, you will not receive any 700.x updates after the 10.2.700.12 update. We only host the upgrade webinars on April 6 and April 7, but replays are accessible at any time afterwards as documentation on EpicWeb. If you defer, you are strongly encouraged to either attend or watch the replay so you are aware of the upgrade process.

Next Ste​​ps

Watch for additional information about the upcoming upgrade. You will be invited to join educational webinars on April 6 and April 7 to learn more about Epicor ERP 11.1.100, how to prepare, and ways to leverage the new functionality for driving business growth. Documentation will also be made available on the Epicor customer portal EpicWeb.

And as a reminder, reach out to Encompass anytime you have a question or need application support. ​​​​

About Encompass Solutions

Encompass Solutions is a business and software consulting firm that specializes in ERP systems, EDI, and Managed Services support for Manufacturers. Serving small and medium-sized businesses since 2001, Encompass modernizes operations and automates processes for hundreds of customers across the globe. Whether undertaking full-scale implementation, integration, and renovation of existing systems, Encompass provides a specialized approach to every client’s needs. By identifying customer requirements and addressing them with the right solutions, we ensure our clients are equipped to match the pace of Industry.


This month, Encompass joined the ranks of Avalara Certified Implementation Partners. We have been implementing Avalara’s automated tax compliance software and Epicor ERP for years. It was only recently that we made things official.

A big congratulations to our own Leslie Kendall for completing the certification program and earning us a place of distinction among the Avalara and Epicor partner communities. We want to thank Avalara as well for a partnership that continues to grow and develop alongside our respective organizations. We look forward to many more years empowering manufacturers with  business management solutions.

Avalara Certified Implementation Partners

Encompass Solutions achieved Partner status by completing Avalara Solutions certification training for implementation components.

As a Certified Implementation Partner, Encompass is provided the highest level of support for their Encompass-implemented clients. This includes direct access to senior technical resources.

Encompass also enhances the implementation experience through the use of unique project management templates, Avalara implementation best practices, and access to internal tools to address the needs of  data migration, tax code mapping, and more.

How Customers Benefit

The benefits of being listed among Avalara Certified Implementation are not reserved for Encompass or Avalara exclusively. Customers relying on us for Avalara-related projects enjoy many benefits of the partnership, including:

Confidence – Avalara Certified Implementation Partners pass rigorous training, have access to tools and priority support, so you can be confident when you go live on your automated tax compliance solution.

Customer Experience- Clients benefit from a single point of contact, expert in their ERP or accounting system, familiar with tier business challenges, focused on their business success.

Time to Value – ​Implementing a tax compliance solution can be time consuming and risky. Avalara Certified Implementation Partners are trained to accelerate your time to value while minimizing your firm’s time commitment.

About Encompass Solutions

Encompass Solutions is a business and software consulting firm that specializes in ERP systems, EDI, and Managed Services support for Manufacturers. Serving small and medium-sized businesses since 2001, Encompass modernizes operations and automates processes for hundreds of customers across the globe. Whether undertaking full-scale implementation, integration, and renovation of existing systems, Encompass provides a specialized approach to every client’s needs. By identifying customer requirements and addressing them with the right solutions, we ensure our clients are equipped to match the pace of Industry.