All-in-one ERP systems – or end-to-end ERP systems – are systems that provide a breadth of functionality within a single solution. In other words, you don’t have to integrate them with third-party applications to obtain key features.
These robust systems are beneficial to many organizations, even if they don’t need all this functionality at the current moment.
Why implement a more robust system than you need? Well, no one said you must implement it all at once. Many of these systems are modular, allowing you to implement functionality over time.
What functionality can you generally expect in these all-in-one solutions? Here are five important features of ERP systems that you can often obtain within a single, integrated solution (this list is by no means exhaustive).
The 2023 Top 10 ERP Systems Report
This report is relevant to organizations across industries and outlines the best ERP vendors that we believe will help organizations prosper in 2023.
5 Important Features of ERP Systems to Look for in an End-to-End Solution
1. Business Intelligence
Many ERP systems are equipped with advanced business intelligence that enables strong data management. These tools display real-time data in interactive charts and customized dashboards, allowing organizations to identify trends and make predictions.
ERP business intelligence gives you full visibility into your company’s operational, financial, and business-related data. With a few clicks, you can access that data and use it to develop reports, create forecasts, and make informed business decisions.
If the platform that you’re eyeing doesn’t come equipped with these business intelligence capabilities, then there’s a good chance that your data will become siloed and go unused.
2. Financial Management Tools
Some ERP tools are simply nice-to-have or are best suited for specific industries. Financial management, on the other hand, is much more universal.
These tools help automate much of the work that your in-house accounting team handles. With the right tools, you can use ERP to:
- Manage assets
- Track business income
- Make more informed spending decisions
- Plan for future growth
- Create detailed financial reports
3. Sales Tools and eCommerce Features
One of the main benefits of ERP software is that it makes it easy for companies to personally target and connect with prospects, and then quickly close deals.
Before a sale occurs, users can access the platform to analyze historical data and recognize customer behaviors. In partnership with the marketing team, they can then brainstorm campaigns that appeal to these buyers.
Some ERP systems even include point-of-sale capabilities that facilitate both online and in-person checkouts.
Speaking of online, many systems also include essential eCommerce functionality, such as order processing and customer support.
4. Customer Relationship Management
A customer relationship management (CRM) system allows your sales staff to store and organize every single detail about past, current, and future deals.
When CRM functionality is native to an ERP system, this can result in a range of benefits, including:
- More effective prospect identification
- Reduced costs associated with customer information management
- Opportunities for customer upselling
5. Supply Chain Management
Modern ERP systems, as we know them today, actually began back in the 1960s. At that time, manufacturers were the primary adopters. They used early supply chain management software to track inventory and manage orders.
Decades later, you can still find these functions, but instead of being exclusively available in standalone solutions, they are also within end-to-end ERP solutions.
Before you begin ERP selection, we recommend making note of your must-have supply chain requirements. These might include:
- Purchase order management
- Demand planning
- Supply chain planning and execution
- Inventory control
- Sales forecasting
- Vendor and supply chain management
- Warehouse management
- Approvals management
- Real-time order tracking
Is a Single ERP System Right for You?
Implementing a single, integrated ERP solution, gives all employees access to the same data. As a result, you can reduce the risk of data inaccuracies, duplicate data, data silos, and all the consequences that could befall your customers as a result.
As you review the important features of ERP systems, start thinking about your current business processes. Which ones absolutely need to be automated and integrated? With a list of your most unique and highest-priority requirements, you will be well-equipped to evaluate ERP vendors.
Our ERP consultants can help you assess your current state to determine what functionality you need in an enterprise system. Contact us below to schedule a free consultation.