5 Frequently Asked Questions about ERP Integration
Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system integration is often a hot topic of discussion in growing organizations. It’s obvious that a close-knit, ERP system integration solution has a plethora of benefits, such as streamlined processes, elevated business productivity, increased operational efficiency, and improved customer success score, but integrating all aspects of an ERP system across the enterprise has its own set of challenges and doubts. The fact is, companies take a lot of time and resources to perform ERP system integration successfully.
With our experience in integrating ERP systems for various organizations, we have uncovered and answered the top 5 FAQs about ERP data integration systems.
1. What Different ERP Modules Form an Integrated ERP System?
An ERP data integration system consists of many modules that help maintain the smooth
flow of information tailored to both department and enterprise-level. Companies can purchase these modules individually or lay their hands on tailored packages. Here are some common ERP system integration modules:
- Inventory Management
- Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
- Accounting and Financial Management
- Human Resource and Payroll Management
2. Why Do Enterprises Need ERP System Integration?
ERP integration optimizes business process management. It is a system of interconnected business applications that manages enterprises and automates various back-end functions, like human resources, production, shipping, financial accounting, etc. with ERP modules. Essentially, ERP system integration solution help enterprises automate business processes, thereby increasing business efficiency and offering better visibility.
Apart from streamlining business processes, these strategic solutions help meet the emerging needs and requirements of customers, reduce overhead costs, accelerate revenue, and promote healthier risk management. For example, a CRM strengthens customer relations and satisfaction, and ultimately revenue by offering a detailed look at customer relationships to foster efficient communication.
3. What Are Common ERP System Integration Challenges?
ERP integration can offer several pitfalls when not approached correctly.
Integrated ERP system is highly complex and requires specialized expertise to manage and operate. If existing integrations are tightly coupled, the complexity increases further and becomes difficult to handle and modify.
ERP integrations are costly upfront. This is because ERP integration is complex and calls for constant maintenance.
A lot of enterprises resort to customization, whether a custom interface or middleware, to expand. Customizing systems allow them to meet their department’s needs, but add a layer of complexity and risk.
Due to increased complexity, companies need to train their teams to gain familiarity with tedious integrations. Training again adds to the overhead cost.
4. What Are the Common Approaches to ERP System Integration?
ERP integration can be implemented in several ways, each with its strengths and weaknesses.
The first approach to ERP system integration, point-to-point is a quick fix for companies. While the initial hurdles of this approach are low, it is unable to realize long-term complications. This integration approach creates a tightly coupled architecture that can quickly become brittle and unmanageable with the growth of the enterprise. Enterprise’s ability to meet current and changing business demands diminishes rapidly. Over time, point-to-point turns more complex and forms tightly coupled dependencies that can burden the organization.
Enterprises can build their own custom ERP integration applications too. However, as the organizational requirements escalate, this approach incurs huge maintenance cost with enormous complexity.
Enterprise Service Bus (ESB)
A modern approach to ERP system integration, ESB integrates applications by acting as an abstraction layer and as such diminishes dependences by separating the ERP system from other applications. This approach to ERP integration can support myriad data formats in real-time.
This approach enables companies to empower non-technical business users to integrate ERP systems with data sources as well as applications. At the same time, IT is freed to focus on more strategic business priorities. With features like transport protocols, application connectors, monitoring dashboards, data translation & mapping units, and more, these modern solutions securely enable companies to self-serve, onboard, and manage ERP integration, resulting in delighted customers and faster revenue.
5. Why Modernized Enterprises Choose to Integrate their ERP Data Integration System?
The majority of companies are opting for ERP system integration technology owing to various reasons such as:
With data available in one accessible location, companies can improve internal workflows. For instance, the accounting team of a company need not collaborate with sales every month for preparing a record of revenue. Centralized access facilitates processes and alleviates employee waiting time, improving companies’ ease of doing business.
ERP integration provides higher visualization of workflows and business tasks. Therefore, employees can have access to information, such as what their peers are working on, without difficulty. This can be beneficial when assigning prioritized tasks or requesting feedback from fellow employees.
ERP integration automates processes across various departments and workflows. With the introduction of automation, the need for manual input ceases. Reduced manual input corresponds to reduced errors, thus increasing the company’s operational efficiency and productivity.
Slow onboarding impacts a business in terms of its relationship with customers and partners. ERP integrations enable enterprises to form better relationships by onboarding their business customers/partners up to 80% faster, boosting sales and revenue.
Enterprises that fail to embrace the wave of digital transformation have higher chances to die or stagnate over time. Modern ERP system integration solutions with self-service and automation capabilities enable companies to drive change by delighting their customers through improved processes and faster onboarding, thereby helping them gain a competitive edge.
Faster Revenue Growth
When companies rely on a modern ERP system integration solution to connect with customers faster, it’s easier for them to identify the needs and requirements of those customers and deliver on them. As a result, customers become happy and satisfied. These delighted customers are more likely to buy other products or services from the company and ultimately create new revenue streams.