What is an ERP Module?
Over the past few decades, enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems have been a crucial tool for businesses. ERP software solutions automate critical business processes and serve as a shared database that stores all financial and operational information across the company. This data is pulled from various modules that are designed to assist different departments in their respective functions, such as accounting, supply chain, and human resources.
All employees have access to ERP solutions that allow them to answer critical questions about the department's performance, plans, and potential areas for improvement. The single source of information reduces data consistency and accuracy issues. It also ensures that everyone can see the same numbers, regardless of their position. This allows for better decision-making, which leads to cost savings and more efficient processes. ERP also automates many tasks, which reduces errors and allows employees to concentrate on strategic work.
Standard ERP modules can support both front- and back-office functions such as finance, accounting, manufacturing, inventory, order management, and warehouse management. They also provide support for procurement, workforce management, and customer relationship management (CRM). More functionally advanced solutions include professional services automation (service management), human resource management (ecommerce), and marketing automation.
What are ERP System Modules?
Each module of the ERP software has a specific purpose and is used to support employees in their jobs. Each module can be connected to the ERP system. This ensures that the ERP system has a single source for accurate data. The system can also handle new modules. The modules, which are all used for specific purposes, can be compared to the ERP system as a toolbox.
ERP Modules and their Features
Because it allows businesses to see their financial status and forecasts, the finance and accounting module of an ERP software for retail businesses is essential. This module includes the ability to track accounts payable (AP), accounts receivable (AR), and manage the general ledger. It creates and stores important financial documents such as balance sheets, tax statements, and payment receipts.
Financial management modules can automate operations related to cash management, vendor payments, and billing. This module helps the accounting department close the books quickly and adhere to current revenue recognition standards. It also contains the data required by financial analysis and planning employees to prepare critical reports such as board reports and profit and loss statements.
The purchasing module, or procurement module, is a tool that helps organizations secure the products and materials they need to make or sell goods. This module allows companies to keep track of the approved vendors and link those suppliers with particular items. This helps with supplier relationship management. The module will enable you to automate the request for quotes and track and analyze all of them.
The procurement module assists the purchasing department in preparing and sending purchase orders once a company accepts a quotation. The module can track the purchase order, which is then turned into a sales order by the seller. Once the order arrives, it automatically updates inventory levels.
Material requirements planning (MRP), the earliest ERP version, was designed for manufacturers. Today, manufacturing is still a core component of ERP. ERP systems often have a manufacturing execution system (MES), or production management. The manufacturing module assists manufacturers in planning production and ensuring they have the suitable materials and machinery to complete designed production runs. It can be used to update the status of goods-in progress and assist companies in tracking actual output against predicted production. It can also provide a live view of the shop floor and capture information about finished goods. It can calculate the average time it takes to make an item and then compare that amount with predicted demand to determine the best production plan.
Inventory management modules allow inventory control by tracking individual and item locations. Through integration with the procurement tool, this module provides a comprehensive picture of both current and incoming inventory. This software allows businesses to manage inventory costs and ensure sufficient stock while storing only a little cash. Inventory management software can help companies compare sales trends to determine the best way to increase margins and increase inventory turnover (the amount of inventory that is sold in a given period). It can prevent stock outs or delays and improve customer service.
The inventory management application can be used by businesses that do not have other modules for supply chain management. It can be handled by the sales team for orders, purchase orders, and shipping. This version is best suited for larger organizations that have multiple locations and need to track inventory.
Management of Orders
An order management module tracks all orders, from receipt to delivery. This module of the ERP follows all orders from customers to warehouses, distribution centers, and retail stores and tracks their status. It also tracks when they are prepared, fulfilled, and shipped to the customer. Order management modules prevent orders from getting lost and increase on-time delivery rates. This helps customers be happy and reduces unnecessary shipping costs.
Advanced order management software can be used to help companies determine which option is most cost-effective for fulfilling orders. This could include a store or a warehouse, depending on the availability of inventory and the location of the buyer.
Businesses that own their warehouses can reap the benefits of a warehouse management module. The application will guide warehouse workers through every step of the warehouse process, from picking up shipments to packing them and shipping them. This application can help companies plan labor according to their expected order volume. Warehouse management modules allow for different picking strategies, such as wave picking, batch picking, or zone picking. Some modules also provide information that can help employees determine the best pick path.
Employees can quickly locate the right product and have shipments sent out quickly when the warehouse management module integrates with order management and inventory management applications. Customer satisfaction is increased by faster delivery.
Supply Chain Management
Every stage of the supply chain movement is monitored by the supply chain management module, from suppliers to manufacturers to distributors. And retailers to consumers. It can also handle any returned materials or products for replacement or refund.
Supply chain management can encompass a variety of modules, such as procurement, inventory management, and manufacturing. It may also have additional functionality that is not available in the core modules.
Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
All information about prospects and customers is stored in the customer relationship management module (CRM). This includes information about the company's communications with prospects, such as their call and email histories and purchase histories. Because staff can access all data when they work with customers, a CRM helps improve customer service.
CRM is used by many business models to manage leads and business opportunities. CRM can monitor communication with prospects and recommend which customers should receive cross-sell or promotional offers. Advanced CRM modules can support customer segmentation, which allows for more targeted marketing processes.
Automation of Professional Services (Service Resource Management)
An organization can plan and manage projects with professional services automation (PSA), also known as a service management module. This module is often used by service-based businesses. This application allows you to track the status of your projects and manage human and capital resources. It also allows you to approve timesheets and expenses. The application facilitates team collaboration by sharing all documents. Additionally, the PSA module may automatically create and deliver bills for clients based on rules related to the billing cycle.
The workforce management module, which is similar to the human resource management module, is for companies that have more salaried workers than hourly employees. It can keep track of employees' hours worked and attendance as well as gauge absenteeism and productivity.
The workforce management module could also include payroll. The payroll module automatically distributes paychecks to employees according to a schedule. It also handles expense reimbursement and deducts the necessary taxes. It can provide reports on payroll expenses and overtime hours, as well as other KPIs.
Human Resources Management
A module for human resource management (HRM), or human capital management, usually includes all of the features of a workforce management app and adds additional capabilities. The HRM module could also be called a CRM for employees. This module is viral and keeps detailed records of all employees. It also stores documents such as performance reviews, job descriptions, and offer letters. This module tracks hours worked, as well as paid time off (PTO), sick days, and benefit information.
The HRM module stores large amounts of information about every employee within the organization. This eliminates duplicates and inaccurate data that many organizations keep in different spreadsheets.
Read More: The Full Guide to CRM 2022
For businesses who Some ERP providers offer an ecommerce module for those that wish to make online sales. This module enables companies to quickly launch an ecommerce site for business-to-business-to-business (B2B) and business-to-consumer (B2C). The best commerce software has easy-to-use features that let staff members add new products and change the content of existing ones (item titles, descriptions, specifications, images, etc.). Adapt the website's layout and appearance.
All information about inventory, payment, and order data is automatically imported when the ecommerce application interfaces with other ERP programs and data is transferred from the ecommerce module to the shared database. This makes sure that all transactions are recorded in the ledger, that any items that are out of stock are taken off the website, and that orders are shipped promptly.
Certain software companies have created a marketing automation module, just like ecommerce. Marketing modules manage promotions through various digital channels such as email, social media, SMS, and the web. It can automate emailing based on campaign rules. Additionally, it has advanced customer segmentation capabilities that ensure customers receive only relevant messages.
Marketing automation software can be integrated with ERP systems or used separately. It provides detailed reports about campaign performance to help you plan and budget for future marketing. These software applications can increase leads, customer loyalty, and sales over time.
CRM Software: What Does It Do?
Customer relationship management (CRM), a technology that manages all of your company's interactions and relationships with customers and potential customers, is called customer relationship management. It's simple: to improve business relationships. CRM systems help companies keep in touch with customers, streamline processes, improve profitability, and stay connected to their customers. CRM is a term that refers to a platform or system for managing contacts, sales, and productivity.
CRM software allows you to focus on the relationships within your organization with individuals -- customers, service users, and colleagues -- all through your relationship with them. This includes finding new customers and winning their business. It also provides support throughout the relationship.
A CRM solution allows sales and marketing teams to track and follow the customer's interactions with your company. This will improve the customer experience and enhance their customer journey by enhancing each touchpoint.
Read More: Describe CRM: The entire CRM manual.
CRM Software Is For Whom?
Everybody involved in sales, customer service, and business development can use a CRM system to manage their external relationships and interactions better. CRM software allows you to store the contact information of prospects and customers, track service issues and manage marketing campaigns. It also makes it easy for anyone in your company to access information about each customer interaction.
It's easier to collaborate with others and increase productivity when you have easy access to the data. Every employee can see who customers have spoken to, how they bought it, when they bought it, what they paid, and many other details. Companies of all sizes can use CRM software to drive business growth. This is especially true for small businesses, which often have to work together to achieve more. The CRM Handbook provides guidance and advice on how to get started.
What is a CRM System?
Customer relationship management (CRM), a solution that organizes customer and prospect information, helps you build stronger relationships and increase your business's growth. CRM systems begin by gathering information from customers, including their website, phone number, social media data, and email addresses. It can also pull in additional information, such as recent news about the company, or store personal details, such as client preferences, when communicating with clients. This information is organized by the CRM tool to provide you with a complete record of companies and individuals so that you can better understand your relationship over time.
The CRM platform can connect with other business apps to help you build customer relationships. Today's CRM platforms are more flexible and can be integrated with your favorite business tools, such as document signing, billing, accounting, surveys, and surveying. This allows you to have a 360-degree view of your customer.
A CRM of the latest generation goes one step further. Administrative tasks are automated by built-in intelligence. like lead routing and data entry, so you have more time to do other valuable activities. Automated insights allow you to understand your customers better and even predict how they will behave, so you can plan the best outreach.
What Are The Top Five Advantages of CRM?
A CRM system can be used in many ways to help customers interact more effectively. Even the smallest tweak can improve customer retention and increase profits. Think about the five greatest CRM benefits that you can reap.
- Enhance Customer Experience: Provide a 360-degree view of customers to contact center representatives and field service technicians, so they can provide personalized customer experiences and quickly resolve problems.
- Improve Customer Retention: Improve your customer engagement with personalized services that win loyalty. Real-time analytics can be used to determine the best offers, the ideal timing, and the optimal channel.
- Increase Sales Reps Revenue: Maximize your sales pipeline visibility and increase sales - by integrating tools for sales force automation and lead management, forecasting, and cross-selling.
- Increase Process Efficiency: Let your sales, marketing, and service teams achieve more with less effort by using automated processes and scheduled follow-up prompts.
- Better Collaboration - Work Smarter Use collaborative CRM to share information between departments and business units to serve customers better.
What are The Main Features of CRM?
Modern customer relationship management systems offer essential CRM sales functions as well as advanced CRM capabilities. These capabilities go beyond contact sorting and filing. You can now streamline your customer-facing activities and strengthen customer relationship software by placing the customer at the center of sales, marketing, and commerce.
A CRM system should have contact, lead, and customer interaction management. Analytics are a must, as well as automation. But you want it all. You want it all to work together. CRM software of the highest caliber provides solutions for customer analysis, customization, cooperation, and many other features.
- Contact Management Safely stores customer information, including contact details and preferences. Your entire business team has 24/7 access to a central database.
- Interaction Management: Keep track of all customer interactions, including phone calls, emails, and social media posts. This will give you a 360-degree view of your customers and ensure consistent, cross-channel experiences.
- Lead Management Identify, score, track, and track lead through the pipeline to convert more prospective customers into purchasers. You may combine lead creation, pipeline management, and lead nurturing tasks with CRM.
- Workflow Automation Use embedded AI and machine learning to automate repetitive tasks like contact record data entry.
- Customer Analytics Get the right insights right away with interactive dashboards and on-demand CRM reporting. You can predict what customers want and personalize their experience so you can take the right actions at the moment.
- CRM Integrations: Integrate CRM. You can do everything in one spot by integrating your website, email, calendar systems, accounting and billing software, client surveys, and document management.
- Mobile CRM that is Secure: You should have access to all from any device, at any time, anywhere, using your CRM features. Additionally, your cloud CRM should facilitate security and data privacy. And comply with GDPR requirements.
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Both ERP and CRM are great tools for increasing revenue. They serve different purposes. ERP centralizes the front- and back-office manual processes, while CRM deals with customer relations, sales, marketing, and sales. The scope of your business requirements and the level of investment you are willing to make will determine which program is right for your company.
Although the whole organization will rely on both CRM and ERP systems, there is one main distinction between them. CRM is used by sales and customer service, whereas ERP is largely used by financial data and the finance department. The former is frequently referred to as the "back office," whereas the former is called the "front office."
While some ERP systems have a CRM component, others don't. However, CRM computer programs often do not contain ERP elements. For instance, Salesforce.com is not an ERP system because it manages transactional data. Although it may have access to order history and invoices, that information is integrated with the ERP and will be added.