5 Reasons to Integrate ERP and CRM
Too many manufacturing organizations are operating ERP and CRM software separately. Usually, this is because they don’t realize the revenue and possible growth they’re missing by refusing to pay out the short-term investment needed to connect the two. In fact, the initial cost of committing to an ERP and CRM integration pales in comparison to the benefits of interconnecting your enterprise platforms. With an integration syncing data between your software applications in real time, your enterprise enjoys greater accuracy, deeper insights and higher productivity. Here are five signs that you are overdue for a CRM and ERP integration.
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1. Your Customer Base Is Growing
When you are still a nascent business, you don't have too many customers to track. You may be recording client information in a collection of notebooks, spreadsheets and email folders without a problem. However, using a rag-tag collection of desktop applications and papers to maintain your business operations just isn’t sustainable. Eventually, you’ll pass your threshold of customers and leads and start noticing data and processes fall through the cracks.
Don't invite error into your business processes by simply assuming that your current method of data tracking and analysis is sustainable—integrate your software before it becomes a problem and you start losing clients. Having ERP and CRM data stored in a single source of truth provides a total view of customers and processes, so you can always have key information at your fingertips.
2. Your Sales and Floor Teams Don’t Communicate
An organization that doesn't integrate its manufacturing data is often filled with information silos, which create a significant barrier to growth and invite missteps in day-to-day operations. It will often result in double entries of data that will get magnified as they pass through different applications. Multiple sales people may follow up with a potential lead, an annoyance to your lead and not a good look for your professionalism. Departmental silos create disjointed processes and prevent your front and back offices from operating on the same page.
With an ERP and CRM integration for manufacturing systems, you’ll find your sales and floor teams communicating better than ever. A fully integrated solution facilitates greater collaboration, helping your entire organization work together to fulfill business tasks and deliver excellent customer experiences.
3. You’re Not Achieving Desired Process Efficiency
If you’re running both pieces of enterprise software already, it just makes sense to bring them together to cut down on current inefficiencies. There’s the time spent on entering quotes, orders and ship-tos into both systems separately. Plus, there's the potential of human error, resulting in orders sent to the wrong customers and other costly mistakes. With an integration platform syncing these kinds of fields automatically (and on a schedule that you determine), you can take human error out of the equation and free up time for other mission-critical tasks.
4. You’ve Made Promises to Clients You Can’t Keep
When your ERP and CRM systems aren't connected, your business is at risk not only of annoying customers with inaccurate orders or wrong shipping data but also of failing to fulfill orders at all. This is all too likely when there’s a lack of communication between the front and back offices in a business.
Imagine a sales person is at an on-site visit with a potential client, impresses with the sales pitch and makes a blockbuster sale. However, when they return to your office, they come to find that all your lines are busy for the next few weeks and there’s no product in stock. This debacle could have been easily avoided if the sales person had easy access to your inventory and manufacturing data. CRM and ERP integration can eradicate these kinds of errors and help you carve out a strategy to leverage data to grow your business.
5. You Don’t Have an Inventory Strategy
Demand planning and inventory strategy are the key to unlocking new growth. If you’re just jumping between enterprise applications and trying to hold all your data together by a thread, eventually that thread will be stretched too thin and break. Your sales people will see growth in a certain aspect of your business and regression in others, but your manufacturing team won’t be able to see or plan for these fluctuations. The result of that strategy will just be your team manufacturing to order without strategizing new ways to support and automate output growth. Plain and simple—if you don’t have crucial business data being synced daily between your CRM and ERP, it won’t be noted, resulting in missed opportunities.
Too many businesses think that an ERP and CRM integration for manufacturing operations isn’t necessary or worth the cost of the project—but they couldn’t be more wrong. Aside from removing the labor involved in dual data entry or the uncertainty that can come with having a technical barrier between your front and back offices, an integration project can light a match that fuels aggressive new growth and innovation in your business.
For more on the benefits of CRM and ERP integration for manufacturing success, check out Unity, Datix’s landmark integration platform built to easily integrate Epicor with your CRM software—with no specialized coding or technical knowledge required on your end. Datix is an Epicor Gold Partner renowned for integrations. Our certified consultants have completed countless integrations for manufacturers and distributors of all sizes and across multiple industries. Get in touch with us today to set up a consultation for your business!