Regardless of the size or segment of a business, for it to be successful, it is necessary to have agile, productive, intelligent processes that promote data-based decision-making. The achievement of these characteristics, in turn, increasingly depends on technological solutions that, together, can bring even better results. This is the case with CRM and ERP integration.
This software, capable of analyzing data, automating tasks, generating reports and assisting in satisfying customer relationships, among other features, drive best practices related to the continuous growth of organizations. NIX offers several IT integration services and can help integrate this software into your business.
Differences between CRM and ERP
CRM systems help manage customer data, purchases, and contact information, which is critical for sales and marketing teams. Companies use CRM to gain better customer insights and make more assertive decisions when selling and interacting with them.
ERP software simplifies and centralizes an organization’s business processes, including order history, planning, scheduling, and other data-driven workflows. When companies use comprehensive ERP software, it provides an easier way to manage critical parts of the operation.
In this context, it is worth mentioning that, depending on the business objectives, CRM and ERP can be integrated or implemented in isolation.
Why integrate CRM and ERP?
Both ERP and CRM offer companies many benefits. Check out some of them for any company, which are related to integration between systems:
1. Getting full customer views
When a company integrates CRM and ERP, end-to-end visibility into business processes is possible. Whether it’s sales, support, marketing, or general customer data, the organization will have all the information it needs to make more informed decisions about maintaining and improving its business relationship with customers.
2. Deduplication of data
When ERP and CRM platforms don’t work together, you will likely encounter duplicate customer data. Some of them may not be fully duplicated, so it is difficult to determine which master record should be. An integrated platform eliminates the chance of that happening, helping to improve data-driven processes across the business ecosystem.
3. Increase in productivity
Working across multiple industries with a connected and integrated team optimizes productivity. With real-time shared data, employees, regardless of their department, can access up-to-date information whenever they need to interact with or obtain information about a customer.
4. Faster sales approvals
When sales teams have access to real-time data, they can move customer contracts through the approval process much faster.
Same-day subscription now becomes a realistic goal because the necessary information is centralized and up-to-date, streamlining tasks. The results include maximized business opportunities and faster turnaround time.
How to integrate CRM and ERP?
In general, systems integration is the connection of different subsystems so that they work functionally allied. Here are some essential steps to promote the integration of CRM and ERP:
- define the scope owner and technical leader: these are two essential professionals within this project since the first is usually the sales manager, who has a panoramic view of the internal processes, and the second, in most cases, the IT executive, that helps the scope owner in decisions and relationships with software suppliers;
- contracting suppliers: when investing in certain systems, it is essential to assess the business objectives, the budget that can be made available, the features offered, scalability, and other aspects that meet the organization’s demands;
- list the data that will be trafficked: with the integration between CRM and ERP, a lot of data will be interconnected. For this reason, it is important to define internally and in detail which of the items will be integrated;
- define the PDCs: after defining the points above, it is time to define the communication ports (PDC) between the systems. This task is normally performed by suppliers or specialized professionals;
- prepare the environment: the next step is to prepare an instance for the development and testing of Middleware, which consists of software located between the operating system and those applied to it.
- develop and define the Middleware server: after preparing the integration environment, the development work by the developer begins. At this time, bugs may arise. This should be resolved so that the integration of CRM and ERP occurs efficiently;
- hire a cloud provider, such as Google or Amazon, or allocate the Middleware on the company’s own server;
- test: after carrying out all the previous steps, it is essential to conduct tests to evaluate the good performance of the integration.