Enterprise Resource Planning, or ERP, is designed to manage a business through every stage it reaches and moves through. It is generally presented as a suite of applications that are all integrated with one another, and that provide real-time information on the processes that are at the core of the business (Loh & Koh, 2004). Originally, ERP was designed to be something that was for back-office use only (Loh & Koh, 2004). It helped to keep a business running, but it was not for the customers to see. It also did not provide any kind of interactive tools that could be used with customers. However, over time that changed and customer relationship management (CRM) and other functions were integrated into ERP (Loh & Koh, 2004). That made a significant difference in how companies did business, especially online, because customers could reach these companies so much more easily than they were able to do in the past. That advanced business-related technology rapidly.
The main objectives of ERP are to help a company operate more smoothly and interact with its customers in the best way possible. These software suites store information, help a company plan and implement multiple considerations, allow for customer feedback, track the success of ideas and plans that the company has provided to the public, and make sure customers are getting what they asked for from a company (Loh & Koh, 2004). As such, ERP software needs to be upgraded from time to time, in order to ensure it is still providing the company and the customers with the best experience possible (Loh & Koh, 2004). If that is found not to be the case, it becomes time to make changes in order to continue advancing the company and moving it forward, as well as keeping customers happy with their interactions.
Loh, T.C., & Koh, S.C.L. (2004). Critical elements for a successful ERP implementation in SMEs. International Journal of Production Research, 42(17): 3433 -- 3455.