Both enterprise resource planning (ERP) and customer relationship management (CRM) platforms revolve around improving your company’s productivity and revenue. But, what is the main difference between ERP and CRM? They approach this goal in two distinct ways.
ERP software focuses on business process management with the intention of streamlining business operations and improving productivity across the organization. ERP uses an integrated database to share information across multiple departments, as well as providing your business with interconnected applications for handling specific business processes.
Most ERP applications address back office requirements, so the human resource department and other administrative departments benefit the most from ERP. The revenue increase that comes from ERP is generated through cost reduction throughout the company thanks to more productive business processes.
A CRM platform tracks customer data and interaction with your company for front office processes. Typically, a CRM is used to support the sales department’s efforts in converting marketing leads into sales, although marketing and support may also use CRM data.
The CRM consolidates the information that customers provide when filling out forms, browsing through your website, or contacting you. CRM platforms often integrate with marketing automation and contact center solutions. A CRM improves revenue directly by making the sales and marketing department’s job easier.
ERP vs. CRM: Spot the Difference
- ERP handles multiple back office processes, while a CRM focuses on the front office sales process. While other applications can be integrated with CRM, the base solution supports the sales pipeline, while ERP handles multiple processes.
- ERP unifies a common database across business processes. If a CRM is used together with other applications, it may or may not share a database depending on integration.
- ERP reduces costs, while CRM focuses on increasing direct revenue.
Choosing Between an ERP and CRM Vendor
When you’re ready to choose an ERP or CRM vendor, you have multiple ways to find the vendor that’s right for your company. SelectHub guides you through the selection process from start to finish. You can also check review sites and Gartner reports to determine a vendor’s reputation and product reliability.
Jumpstart your ERP or CRM selection process with a free requirements template and 30 day free trial of RequirementsHub.
When you’re finalizing your vendor choices, SelectHub helps you easily compare vendors and set up RFPs to continue your software selection journey.