ERP is an acronym for Enterprise Resource Planning. It’s a modular software system designed to integrate the main functional areas of a company’s business processes into a single integrated system. Essentially, what an ERP software system does, is to standardize, simplify, and integrate business processes, to increase an organization’s efficiency and productivity – critical to a company’s growth and profitability. Business processes include finance, human resources, procurement, distribution, and many other departments.
ERP is often referred to as the “glue” that holds a company together. Before ERP came onto the scene in the 1990s, company departments worked independently, each managed by a standalone software system, such as a spreadsheet (Excel), where company information was recorded manually. This made it challenging for larger companies to efficiently manage and control their business with reams of management, operational, and logistics-related data.
Today’s ERP systems are becoming exceedingly easier to implement and use, although successful system onboarding does have a learning curve and requires user training. In addition, modern ERP systems are scalable, with the ability to grow as your business grows – and because of the system’s flexible nature, it can also be customized to suit individual business needs.
ERP has one fundamental goal – to optimize the organization within a company, end-to-end. An ERP system offers tremendous short and long-term benefits for companies of varying shapes and sizes and across all industry sectors. Here are some of the most common ERP use cases:
Integrate Financial Data
Manage Orders & Inventory
Standardize & Accelerate Production Processes
Manage Human Resources
Built-in BI & Analytics Tools
A CRM system is designed to help businesses manage information related to customer interactions.
CRM systems can generate sales projections, nurture prospects through the sales funnel, manage invoices and communication efforts.
A CRM improves efficiency, increases sales, helps deliver accurate customer data, improves customer service quality, and enhances customer satisfaction and interaction levels.
When it comes time to replace your legacy business management systems with an ERP, it’s essential to first understand your company’s actual business needs, and only then, shop around for the best possible ERP system. While ERP can be a costly upfront investment, implementing an ERP system will save valuable time, resources, and costs down the road.
Following are real-life business scenarios that suggest it may be time for your organization to consider implementing an ERP, or upgrading your current ERP system:
While ERP systems streamline and automate processes, creating leaner, more accurate, and more efficient operations, there are several critical reasons why a company should consider ERP. If your organization is faced with any or all of the issues listed here, then it may be not only a good time but the best time to invest in ERP software.