ERP vs CRM: Exploring the Differences and Overlaps in Functionality

21 August, 2023 by
ERP vs CRM: Exploring the Differences and Overlaps in Functionality
| No comments yet

“Why should I get an ERP software when I already have a CRM software?” is a widely asked question by business owners. But here's a counter to ponder: “Why should you get a washing machine when you already have a dryer?”

Much like how a dryer only tends to the drying aspect of laundry, a CRM system dedicates itself to the realm of customer relationship management.

On the flip side, an ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) is a comprehensive solution akin to a washing machine that doesn't just stop at one step.

Let’s closely examine the ERP vs CRM systems and their differences in functionality.

What is An ERP System?

An ERP system, short for Enterprise Resource Planning, stands as the operational backbone of businesses. It handles a gamut of functions, from finance and inventory management to HR, CRM and production.

An ERP system doesn't confine itself to a single department. It's the conductor that orchestrates various business processes into a harmonious symphony.

What is a CRM System?

On the flip side, a CRM (Customer Relationship Management) system operates as a specialised tool for nurturing and enhancing customer interactions.

It helps you manage leads, track sales, and cultivate meaningful relationships with clients. A CRM system dedicates itself to the fine-tuning of customer connections.

History Of ERP

It is a management-level software that offers a single point of access to all enterprise data. It was first developed by Gartner Group in the 1990s-2000. Nowadays it has become one of the most widely employed operational solutions in the world, which software giants like SAP AG (Germany), Oracle (US), and Microsoft (US).

Several key trends have emerged in ERP software over the past decade which continue to drive change and growth. A new generation of ERP vendors has revolutionized the way people purchase and deploy business applications. These changes include everything from more flexible licensing models and simplified deployment to more affordable SaaS and XaaS offerings.

Cloud-based ERP software solutions are part of the new generation of SaaS business intelligence solutions. SaaS or Cloud Computing are two terms which are used interchangeably. The first mentions of Cloud Computing describe this model as “software as a service”, equivalent to SaaS.

Today, ERP systems can be found in the cloud or even in storage systems. However, Cloud-based ERP options are becoming more commonplace, with various providers offering platforms for finance, accounting, manufacturing and distribution businesses.

How Does An ERP System Work?

We are living in the age of digitalization, when almost all sectors are running business in the cloud. One of the most significant ways to automate business is an ERP. It's a piece of software that makes it possible for all your company’s departments to communicate efficiently and work hand-in-hand.

These applications support a company’s end-to-end business processes. For companies with a complex network of subsidiaries and highly distributed operations, an ERP system can play a vital role in streamlining data. It also plays a role in facilitating procurement and procurement chain management across the enterprise.

This software eliminates manual tasks and inconsistencies typically found in manual systems. The purpose of an ERP system is to alleviate some of the repetitive tasks that occupy a large portion of an employee's time and provide easy access for employees at every level of the organization.

Features of an ERP and CRM System

The comprehensive ERP system boasts features like financial management, supply chain optimization, inventory control, human resource management, and even CRM. It's the all-in-one solution that handles every stage of business operations.

On the other hand, a CRM system shines with customer-centric features such as lead tracking, sales forecasting, and communication management. It excels at focusing on the finer nuances of nurturing relationships.

Differences Between CRM and ERP System

The distinction between these two systems lies in their scope and focus.

ERP covers the entirety of business operations, acting as the cohesive thread that connects all departments while CRM focuses on weaving an intricate fabric of customer engagement.

  1. Focus and Purpose:

    • CRM: Primarily focused on managing customer relationships, sales, and marketing activities.
    • ERP: Designed to manage a broad spectrum of business processes, including finance, HR, procurement, inventory, and more.
  2. Scope:

    • CRM: Concentrates on customer-centric data and interactions.
    • ERP: Encompasses various departments and functions within an organisation.
  3. Data Handling:

    • CRM: Emphasizes customer data, such as contact information, purchase history, and communication logs.
    • ERP: Manages a wide array of data, including financial transactions, employee records, inventory levels, and supplier information.
  4. Functionality:

    • CRM: Streamlines customer-facing processes, such as lead management, sales forecasting, and customer support.
    • ERP: Integrates and automates business processes across multiple departments, enabling efficient resource planning and management.
  5. Integration:

    • CRM: Can be integrated with other systems, including ERP, to improve customer insights and communication.
    • ERP: Typically serves as the central system that integrates various organizational functions.
  6. User Base:

    • CRM: Mainly used by sales, marketing, and customer service teams.
    • ERP: Utilized by a wider range of departments, including finance, HR, manufacturing, and supply chain.
  7. Customisation:

    • CRM: Often highly customisable to cater to specific sales and marketing needs.
    • ERP: Highly customisable to adapt to an organization's unique business processes across multiple departments.

ERP vs CRM: Why Consider ERP for Your Business

When pondering the question, "Why should I get an ERP software when I already have a CRM software?" The answer becomes clear, the magic of ERP lies in its all-encompassing capabilities.

By implementing an ERP system, you're not only nurturing customer relationships, but also automating and streamlining various business processes.

An ERP system offers both CRM features and broader business automation, creating a symphony of success for your business.

Advantages Of ERP To Your Business

The introduction of a complete ERP system into a business environment can ensure that a company is able to maintain its competitive edge. The following are some of the main advantages of ERP to your business:

  1. Makes business processes transparent and automates them
  2. Provides a real-time view of the business
  3. Creates a single source of reliable information
  4. Reduces billing software costs
  5. Ensures accuracy and efficiency of business processes

What Is Cloud ERP?

Cloud ERP is a new and emerging way of getting and using ERP software. It's nothing like traditional ERP software. If you understand what cloud ERP is and how it works, you can save your company a lot of money.

Cloud ERP is nothing but the ERP which is hosted by cloud computing. It can be defined as Internet-based computing in which software, platforms, servers etc. are hosted by third parties and service providers rather than the organization itself. Cloud computing has its roots in both hardware and software technologies. This means no limitations on data transfer speed or data storage capacity. The features of cloud ERP that attract most of the users are - real time data access, on demand & scalable services, flexible payment options etc.

Advantages Of Cloud ERP Solution

1. An Easy and managed solution

2. Increased flexibility- Bring your company everywhere and anywhere

3. Lower cost and no need for any new hardware

4. Cloud ERP solutions save you from overhauls and system crash

5. Innovative ways to solve all kinds of business problems

ERP Implementation

When a company takes the decision to implement an ERP system, a huge amount of tactical planning and work is required in order to make sure that organisations use this system to its full potential.

No doubt ERP implementation is a complex process. However, thanks to our extensive experience in this field, we have streamlined it considerably. erpSOFTapp has turned one of the most time-consuming processes into a pleasant collaboration.

ERP leads to better business results, a higher quality of service and a substantial reduction in costs. The implementation process, however, is one that needs to be approached with caution. An understanding of the value that can result from a successful implementation is needed as well as a full appreciation for all the requirements necessary to make it deliver those benefits.

Getting Started

Paperwork and manual data entry that has been a standard practice in businesses can now be avoided by using the ERP system. Businesses today need not spend time and effort in gathering and processing information and data and doing paper-based billing and payrolls. With the help of an ERP system like Odoo, all these processes become automated.

Odoo is one of the easiest ERP or specifically, Enterprise Resource Planning software that you can implement in your business. It specializes in doing business in various verticals including services, manufacturing, distribution, retailing and others. Odoo enables its users to handle their business functions through an automated platform which also helps to run the organization smoothly.

This leads to increased productivity, enhanced revenues and decreased costs.

How can you get started with Odoo ERP?

Visit to tryout the Odoo system and begin your business transformation. Good evening

Final Takeaway

In the business world, the ERP vs. CRM debate isn't a competition, it's a call for integration.

Integrating an ERP system into your business means embracing the power of both CRM features and broader business automation.

So, when deciding to empower your business, remember that an ERP system not only offers customer relationship finesse but also the strength of comprehensive business management, bringing together the best of both worlds for holistic success.

ERP vs CRM: Exploring the Differences and Overlaps in Functionality
Webmaster 21 August 2023
Share this post
Sign in to leave a comment