Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) is an integrated business management solution that provides financial management, Customer Relationship Management (CRM), and Supply Chain Management (SCM) functionality. This integrated design means that business processes and information are shared across applications and visibility is increased across the organisation.
ERP normally operates through a graphical user interface and is usually modular in design so people can easily use the functionality required to meet the evolving needs of the business. Data is gathered in a central database that can be reported against, and used by analytical tools to generate business intelligence.
In an ever more competitive business world, organizations need business management solutions that can be expanded beyond core functionality and integrated with other applications and data stores. This not only gives executives and other users an optimal platform for operating their business, but also provides deep insight into the business to help guide operations and strategic initiatives through rich reports and analytics.
Organizations typically generate a lot of disparate information, but often do not have a clear view into the business. Integrating functionality and data sources that traditionally have been stored in separate applications and databases is essential for organizations that want clear insight into data from across the business.
ERP solutions need to integrate processes and data to help break down the artificial barriers of information silos, and information entered into one application must be simultaneously available for use in other applications. Integration can also better connect everyone in the organization with customers, suppliers, and trading partners including across the Internet and from intranet collaboration portals.
Integrating data across applications can boost productivity by freeing users from the burden of having to pull information from separate sources, and enhances business management by unlocking data for what is rapidly becoming one of the most important areas of business management, business intelligence.
Business intelligence, combined with other reporting and analytical solutions, helps inform and speed up decision-making. It enables an organization to respond more quickly to new competitive challenges and proactively take advantage of new market opportunities.
Organizations want business management solutions that are robust yet easy to use. They require solutions that are flexible to accommodate customization, and expandable to meet future business needs and accommodate growth.
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