Introduction to Acumatica
Acumatica is both the name of a leading Cloud ERP company and the name of their leading software product, Acumatica. This is one of the first ERP suites completely written for businesses looking for cloud-based accounting and ERP software. There are several factors that help Acumatica to stand out in an ever-growing field of business software touting cloud capabilities.
Unlimited Users, Web-enabled UI, Modular Editions, and their xRP Architecture are all incredible features that are standard in their solutions. The topic we’ll be discussing today, however, is their unique licensing model that allows customers to deploy their Acumatica Edition one of 3 ways while providing the flexibility to switch that license when needed.
The Difference Between Editions vs Licenses
We’ll define the 3 license types in the next segment but first we need to differentiate between a License and an Edition. For Acumatica, the license purchased determines how the software edition will be hosted whereas the edition is which modules and features the software will provide. Acumatica will always be accessed by the user (from admin to clerk, executive to operator) via a web browser. This is key to how Acumatica functions so well across all platforms from computers and laptops to mobile devices like smart phones and tablets. In addition, this allows the user to access their system as long as they have access to a browser with internet access and can remember their log in credentials.
Every Acumatica license is built around their Core Financial functions and allows the customer to add editions for Distribution, Manufacturing, and more recently, Construction.
Types of Licenses Available with Acumatica
Acumatica has 3 versions of licensing ranging from Public Cloud to installing the system on your own servers. Note that this does not change how Acumatica is accessed by your users. It will always be accessed via a web browser (or application in the case of some mobile devices).
Software as a Service (SaaS). This is also known as Public Cloud and is the most popular licensing option of the 3. In this case, the customer’s Acumatica environment is hosted in an Amazon Web Services environment that Acumatica maintains. This means there is no IT management required to ensure the operation of Acumatica. This is the most popular for the ease of use to the customer as they don’t need to maintain their own private cloud or servers to operate their software while still taking advantage of the leading enterprise datacenters of Amazon.
Private Cloud Subscription (PCS). This allows the customer to have Acumatica installed in their own cloud hosting service. This is ideal for organizations that already have standing agreements in place with a cloud provider like Microsoft or Amazon.
Private Cloud Perpetual (PCP). This licensing option is identical to PCS technologically speaking but provides a lower annual fee after year 1. The customer can still install this license in a public cloud that they maintain or even in their own server environment. This is most like the legacy model of software purchasing where the customer will buy the software in year 1 and be charged a maintenance fee annually.
Which License Public vs Private Cloud Licenses
Acumatica has different licensing models to meet the needs of different customers. Here is a closer look at some of the top reasons customer’s pick different licensing options.
Compliance: Some industries have very specific requirements for where their accounting software and data are stored and they need the flexibility to install a modern solution in a private server environment.
IT Strategy: The IT needs and strategies of every customer will be different. Many organizations are pushing all of their business applications to a Public Cloud to focus their IT groups on technical improvements. Others are moving all of their software to a unified private cloud for ease of management.
Company Growth: A startup will likely start with the fastest and least complex software possible to focus on growth. After they hit a certain point, it may make sense to evaluate alternative licensing depending on the IT resources available and the overall strategy. They may also reach the point to go public, in which case they now need to consider the compliance that goes with that move and where their data needs to be housed as per financial regulatory obligations.
Acumatica’s unique licensing and architecture makes changing where you host your software a non-issue. The process is as simple as informing your partner of your change to start the process with Acumatica. Then they do some testing to make sure any customizations will operate and then the change is made a pre-determined time to ensure limited disruption to the business.