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What is the difference between an ERP and a CRM?

Every self-respecting company should know the differences between an ERP and a CRM, two solutions that can significantly help achieve the long-awaited goal of increasing the overall profitability of a business. 

Although they have certain similarities, these two types of business management software respond to different concepts: 

ERP (Enterprise Resources Planning): refers to enterprise resource planning.  

CRM (Customer Relationship Management): refers to customer relationship management. 

The implementation of these systems, which are increasingly diverse and functional, seeks to adapt an organization to digital transformation by improving productivity, control and efficiency, although their fields of action are different. 

Although some of the specific tasks for which these business management programs were designed can be performed by the others, it should not be forgotten that both have been designed to achieve specific objectives. 

Be that as it may, it is ideal for companies to have both systems to carry out a better management of the processes, since combining them maximizes the efficiency and profitability of the business. 

Therefore, it is essential for companies to know the main differences between an ERP and a CRM. However, first it is necessary to know what they are and what are the advantages of each of these business management programs. 

What is an ERP: 

An Enterprise Resource Planning system is a software that serves as a support to organize all the key information of all the departments that are part of a company. 

Its specific functions perfectly address areas such as sales, inventories, production, finance, human resources or accounting, among others. Its main utility is to facilitate communication between areas and teams to make better decisions.

A great point in favor of ERP is that it is scalable, since it has different modules that can be added little by little to a company as it grows. Let's see it better with an example: 

If a business is only a few years old, perhaps at that time it only requires support with management in the area of sales and finance, but if it grows in staff and departments, it could integrate a human resources module to maintain a better organization and increase team performance. 

This is one of the big differences between an ERP and a CRM, although there are others as we will see below.


What is a CRM: 

A Customer Relationship Management system serves to improve an organization's business relationships with its customers. It is a strategy used to manage interactions with both customers and potential customers. 

A CRM builds bonds between customer and company to increase sales, improve service and experience, and increase profitability: 

As a strategy: it is the way in which customer relationships are managed. 

As a process: it fosters and manages that relationship. 

As a technology: it is used to record, report and analyze the interactions that users have with the company. 

What are the 5 main differences between an ERP and a CRM:

Both are focused on maximizing the resources and profitability of companies, it is important to know how to differentiate them because each one has unique characteristics that help identify which one best suits the needs of a company: 

ERP

CRM

It allows to organize, manage and control the business processes carried out in the company.

Ensures the recording of every transaction and interaction with current and potential customers.

It is designed for companies.

Is customer oriented.

It focuses on reducing costs.

Focuses on increasing sales.

It helps to plan business resources and control aspects of production, logistics, inventory, accounting and distribution.

Provides information about any customer to meet their needs and to create market research to improve business strategies.

Ensures better business management if the company grows.

It guarantees the continuity of the company in its beginnings.



Can a company use an ERP and a CRM at the same time? 

Although a priori it may seem that they are incompatible systems that cause different frictions in the intra-departmental management of any company, the answer is yes. Because solutions such as Microsoft Dynamics 365 are designed to offer a comprehensive response in the cloud for all operations and traceability in any area of the business. Its portfolio of intelligent applications will allow you to respond in real time to any query or management related to your customers, operations, finances and much more.

In this way, all areas of your company will be involved by having the same information, avoiding misunderstandings and increasing knowledge sharing. 


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