CRM + ERP Series: Blog 2: Data Integration

ERP systems

Both customer relationship management (CRM) and enterprise resource planning (ERP) are powerful tools. But when tied together, they give your company full access to both front-office and back-office activities. In this three-part blog series, Intelestream dives into why and how you should connect these two systems.

This blog focuses on what data to integrate. Wondering what the difference is between CRM and ERP? Check out the first blog in this series. And to learn syncing best practices, check back on April 5.

If you want details on how to break down silos, improve your interoperability, and enhance the customer experience, check out this free webinar from Intelestream and Esker

CRM and ERP systems both have their places in the ecosystem of your business. But as we discussed in the benefits of integration blog, there are significant benefits to connecting your front- and back-office applications.

What types of data should be integrated?

The answer will differ, depending on the needs of your business and the end user.

The good news is there are ways to figure out what’s going to work best for you.

In order to determine what end users are asking for, check in with your team, and discuss:

  • Information your team needs
  • Data they use
  • Information you need to get a complete 360-degree customer view

In reality, all of your end users may be looking for the same data, but it needs to be presented in different ways.

Here are some common types of data that transfer between CRM and ERP systems:

  • Customer Data
  • Accounts and Contacts
  • Quotes, Orders, and Invoices
  • Payments
  • Shipments
  • RMAs and Warranties
  • Historical Sales Data
  • Product Catalogs and Inventories

Types of Integration

Beyond just knowing what kinds of information you want your CRM and ERP systems to share, you must also know how to integrate them.

There are two types of data integration: unidirectional and bidirectional. As the name implies, unidirectional integration involves information that’s moving in a single direction. Typically, data flows from ERP into CRM. Then in the second system, it’s available in a read-only format. In bidirectional integration, information travels back and forth between the systems.

To learn tips for syncing your best practices, check out the article that will be released on April 5.

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