Having a Continuity of Operations Plan is very important for businesses to continue to perform essential functions under a broad range of circumstances. The term Continuity of Operations Plan (COOP) is mostly attributed to the Federal Government which mandates a plan to keep the government running when faced with different crisis (financial, war, terrorist attacks, natural disasters, even nuclear attacks).
In the business world, we hopefully don’t have to worry about things like nuclear attacks, but we still need to be prepared so that we can be operational when “disaster” strikes. This could be any number of things: loss of key personnel, data loss, hacker breach, regional natural disasters (hurricane, earthquake, etc.), or what we have today with a global pandemic that is forcing businesses to shut down offices, implement work at home orders, and reduction of staff.
When you have less support staff to do your day-to-day processing of AR, AP, and other tasks, it becomes difficult to get paid by your customers and pay your vendors. Utilizing automation can help reduce your risk of downtime during crisis times. And it can increase productivity when you aren’t operating in crisis mode.
In the Accounts Receivable realm, Catalina Technology has automation tools that allow businesses to create customer portals so that the customer can login, view their statements, pay invoices, apply credit memos, and other AR functionality. Account Central also allows your remote workers to login and manage their customers, send out invoices, and pay for their customers without having to be in the office.
Because Catalina’s tools are web based, your infrastructure needs are minimal. You don’t have to have complex VPN’s setup, access to terminal server, or the SL thick client. All the user needs is a web browser. Security also insures that payments captured are PCI compliant to protect your customer’s identity and payment information.
Catalina also has other integration tools that allow you to integrate with best of breed cloud based solutions for procurement, ecommerce, CRM, human resources, time tracking, and many more. This will allow you give your employees and customers access to cloud based tools and apps no matter where they are working. Catalina’s integration tools will then make sure that the data synchronizes between SL and cloud.
Regardless of what you do to plan for crisis, having a plan is important. Most businesses get caught off guard even from the smallest of emergencies. Creating a plan, understanding your weak points, and having ways to maintain operations during an emergency is very important. The federal government also has some pointers and planning ideas here on ready.gov: https://www.ready.gov/business-continuity-plan
|Brian Wharton founded Catalina Technology (www.catalinatechnology.com) to extend enterprise systems to the web over 20 years ago. Catalina is a leader in integration and API development for ERP solutions.
Catalina Technology is a developer of an extremely comprehensive software API which enables the back office ERP to integrate to many 3rd party and custom solutions for CRM (Dynamics CRM and Salesforce), helpdesk and support, time and expense management, 3PL integration, EDI replacement, and more.