Enterprise resource planning (ERP) is a type of software used by organisations to manage procurement, risk management, supply chain operations, project management, accounting and other day-to-day business activities. On the other hand, customer relationship management (CRM) is the set of strategies, practices and technologies that organisations adopt to analyse and manage customer interactions and data across the customer lifecycle. Both solutions are mainly developed to streamline and automate business processes. Despite their similarity, CRM and ERP still come with respective differences. Continue reading to learn how to better distinguish between the duo.
1. Focus of activities
A CRM system is geared toward front-office activities, while ERP prioritises back-end process management. The goal of a CRM system is simple: ensuring constant connection between companies and customers, while paving the way for standardised front-end processes. Specifically, the system is used to manage front-office activities like the search for potential customers and new deals, as well as support for customer relationships. Meanwhile, an ERP solution like Sage 300 software supports multiple functions across the enterprise, regardless of small or medium-sized businesses. It is deployed to keep track of all back-end aspects, including logistics, financial services, production and others. An ERP system integrates a multitude of business processes and facilitates data flow between them.
2. Main objectives/ goals
The main reason for adopting a CRM system is to boost sales. Often integrated with marketing cloud, sales cloud, service cloud and other applications, the software serves as a centralised platform for sales teams to deal with customer interactions for better customer experience (CX). Close interactions lead to more deals and greater customer loyalty. Acsolv Consult’s Sage CRM solution helps to shorten sales cycles and build more profitable relationships across all channels. It provides sales force automation by allowing sales users to instantly access to accounts, reports, calendars and other sales information, for storing, reporting and tracking purposes.
On the other hand, an ERP system’s prime objective is cost reduction. Eliminating the need for separate software in each department, a single ERP solution cuts recurring costs related to licensing, updates and training of software. It also helps organisations to save up by eliminating data re-entry, errors and redundancy. For instance, the Sage 300 ERP offered by Acsolv Consult in Singapore provides material Permit to keep track of the entire sales period and minimises return/ repair costs.
Sales representatives/managers and customer service executives are individuals who usually leverage a CRM solution. Typically, the software is used to store sales data centrally, and for presentation in an easy-to-follow format. To provide greater clarity, here are two common reasons of why sales managers and customer service personnel deploy a CRM system:
• Rationalises sales moves
CRM helps salespersons to close deals and achieve sales targets faster by streamlining the entire sales cycle. This is doable as order processing and preparing quotes are automated in the system.
• Improves customer satisfaction
Customer satisfaction is of top priority when it comes to sales and marketing. With a different service purpose from Sage 300 cloud, Acsolv Consult’s Sage CRM solution resolves customer issues efficiently by providing user-friendly tools to customer service professionals to access relevant customer data.
Meanwhile, an ERP solution is frequently used by project and inventory managers. A systematic inventory management is made possible through the deployment of ERP. Instead of using manual implementations and spreadsheets that may result in human error and data inaccuracy, an ERP solution helps inventory managers to update and balance inventory more easily. The solution automatically consolidates all aspects of your operation from planning through production, operations and accounting. This enables you to manage your entire operation from a single system in a more organised manner. Below are some benefits an inventory manager can gain by adopting ERP:
• Better tracking of inventory turnover
ERP categorises inventory in many ways and analyses useful inventory assumptions. Distinguishable in-system inventory management features included in Acsolv Consult’s Sage 300 solution in Singapore enable users to track inventory from the location itself, while ensuring timely delivery of orders from more than one site.
• Accurate forecasting
Accurate forecasting is essential for a business. An ERP system can be a valuable tool to ensure optimal profits by precisely gauging demands, orders and other factors. This in turn allows an inventory manager to make a profitable and strategic decision with scheduling, procurement and labour management.
While both ERP and CRM systems may differ in terms of fundamentals, purposes and functionality, they are equally essential in ensuring a business’ efficiency. We hope you find the comparisons above useful in helping you better differentiate the two solutions. Feel free to reach out to a professional software provider if you need more clarity.
Acsolv Consult is the only award-winning software company specialist in Sage 300 Accpac. We provide ERP, CRM and other software to improve operational and financial efficiencies. Get in touch with us now to find out more about our solutions.