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What is ERP?

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ERP stands for Enterprise Resource Planning

What is the simplest ERP definition?

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Think about all the core processes needed to run a company: finance, HR, manufacturing, supply chain, services, procurement, and others. At its most basic level, ERP integrates these processes into a single system.
But new ERP systems are anything but basic. They use the latest technologies – such as machine learning and AI – to provide intelligence, visibility, and efficiency across every aspect of a business.
   

Benefits of ERP

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Higher productivity

Streamline and automate your core business processes to help everyone in your organization do more with fewer resources.
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Better insights

Eliminate information silos, gain a single source of truth, and get fast answers to mission-critical business questions.
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Accelerated reporting

Fast-track business and financial reporting and easily share results. Act on insights and improve performance in real time.
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Lower risk

Maximize business visibility and control, ensure compliance with regulatory requirements – and predict and prevent risk.
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Simpler IT

By using integrated ERP applications that share a database, you can simplify IT and give everyone an easier way to work.
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Improved agility

With efficient operations and ready access to real-time data, you can quickly identify and react to new opportunities.

How do ERP systems work?

An ERP system, also called an ERP suite, is made up of different enterprise resource planning applications that talk to each other and share a database.
Each application (aka ERP module) typically focuses on one business area. You can combine different modules to meet your needs. Finance, human resources, sales, and logistics are popular starting points. There are also modules specific to industries – from manufacturing to retail.

Types of ERP

There are three different types of ERP implementations – cloud, on premise, and hybrid. Explore the benefits of each and choose the one that makes the most sense for your business.

5 signs you’re ready for an ERP system

Most businesses start out using a variety of simple, standalone tools to manage different processes – such as QuickBooks or Excel Spreadsheets. Here are five signs you’ve outgrown them.
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1. You’re spending more time on daily activities

If it’s taking longer to manage key activities, like closing the books, too many disparate applications may be to blame. ERP software integrates solutions and data into one system with a common interface, making it easier for business units to communicate and do their jobs effectively. 

2. You have many unanswered business questions

Can you easily answer important questions about your business – such as revenue per product line or number of returns? If not, segregated systems and a lack of access to metrics and KPIs may be holding you back. Enterprise resource planning software is designed to address these challenges. 

3. You have runaway business processes

Are there areas where your processes are getting away from you? Maybe it’s harder for you to manage inventory, satisfy customers, or keep costs in check. If so, your business processes may need to be restructured to accommodate growth or changing priorities – a natural fit for ERP software.

4. You have manual processes with multiple data sets

Are most of your departments using their own applications and processes to get things done? If so, chances are you’re spending too much time on duplicate data entry. When information can’t flow between systems, reporting takes longer, errors happen often, and decision making is hampered.

5. You’re missing out on fast-moving opportunities

Are you spending so much time running your business that you can’t pursue exciting new opportunities? Newer ERP systems include advanced, intelligent capabilities, like machine learning and predictive analytics, that make it easier to identify and capitalize on profitable new ventures.

Learn more about ERP from the experts

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