ERP Software

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With an integrated system that includes ERP, financials, commerce, inventory management, HR, PSA, supply chain management, CRM and more – NetSuite enables fast-growing businesses across all industries to work more effectively by a...Read more about NetSuite


FrontRunners 2022

ERPAG is a cloud-based enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution. It is suitable for small and midsize businesses in various industries, including automobile, retail, education, information technology and more. Primary features ...Read more about ERPAG


Odoo Point of Sale (POS) is part of Odoo’s integrated suite of business applications. The module is available both on and offline and provides unified data across stores and has an integrated inventory management function. Od...Read more about Odoo


Voiro simplifies work for media sales, operations, and finance teams, making them more efficient and productive. We enable faster and better decisions across teams, with a razor-sharp focus on data. We draw sharp insights from rev...Read more about Voiro

4.20 (5 reviews)

Aptean Industrial Manufacturing ERP Made2Manage Edition

Aptean Industrial Manufacturing is designed for manufacturers in job shops and dynamic "to-order" and mixed-mode environments. It's suitable for SMB manufacturers in industries like industrial equipment, electronics and fabricated...Read more about Aptean Industrial Manufacturing ERP Made2Manage Edition

3.42 (67 reviews)

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ICIM ERP by Metasystems offers small and midsize discrete manufacturers a comprehensive ERP that brings together order management, engineering, manufacturing, CRM, financials and warranty management. It supports the business needs...Read more about Metasystems

4.20 (15 reviews)


FrontRunners 2022

SAP S/4HANA Cloud is a cloud-based and on-premise enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution. It is suitable for small, midsize and large businesses in industries such as automotive, engineering, construction, mining, research an...Read more about SAP S/4HANA Cloud

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IFS Cloud

IFS Cloud is a composable enterprise software application that orchestrates customers, people, and assets to reduce complexity, cost and risk as you plan, manage and optimize critical asset availability, strive for operational exc...Read more about IFS Cloud

3.81 (27 reviews)

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Cetec ERP

Cetec ERP is a cloud-based manufacturing enterprise resource planning solution that caters to midsize and large businesses and helps them to manage various components of the manufacturing process i.e inception of a job, procuremen...Read more about Cetec ERP

4.46 (40 reviews)

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Iptor ERP

Iptor (formerly known as IBS Enterprise) offers cloud-based solutions for supply chain managers and distributors of all scale and size. It provides integrated ERP solution with built-in capabilities for supply chain management, in...Read more about Iptor ERP

3.00 (1 reviews)

Blue Link ERP

Blue Link is a cloud-based ERP, inventory management and accounting solution that caters to small and midsize businesses. The solution helps businesses handle the back-office needs as well as logistical and operational requirement...Read more about Blue Link ERP

4.18 (33 reviews)

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Aptean Process Manufacturing ERP Ross Edition

Ross ERP by Aptean is a hybrid enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution that caters to process manufacturing organizations in the food and beverage, chemicals, pharmaceutical and biotech industries. It helps organizations to in...Read more about Aptean Process Manufacturing ERP Ross Edition

4.46 (13 reviews)


PolyPM was created by Polygon Software, a provider of technology solutions for apparel manufacturers and textile mills since 2001. PolyPM is a 2-in-1 enterprise resource planning (ERP) and product lifecycle management (PLM) solut...Read more about PolyPM

4.58 (37 reviews)

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Aptean Food & Beverage ERP bcFood Edition

bcFood by Beck Consulting is an enterprise resource planning system designed specifically to meet the needs of both small and large food manufacturers, processors, and distributors. bcFood is built on Microsoft Dynamics NAV a...Read more about Aptean Food & Beverage ERP bcFood Edition

4.13 (4 reviews)

Datacor ERP

Datacor ERP (formerly Chempax) is an integrated enterprise resource planning (ERP) and customer relationship management (CRM) application designed specifically for chemical process manufacturers and distributors. The solution can ...Read more about Datacor ERP

4.17 (46 reviews)

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Base Builders

Built for ARCHITECTS and ENGINEERS that design and draw BLUEPRINTS. is developed specifically for architecture and engineering firms by a veteran of the industry. It handles everything from time tracking to invoi...Read more about Base Builders

4.17 (21 reviews)

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Aptean Process Manufacturing ERP ProcessPro Edition

Aptean Process Manufacturing ERP ProcessPro Edition is a complete Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) solution for small to mid-sized batch process manufacturers to manage their business operations through manufacturing, sales, inv...Read more about Aptean Process Manufacturing ERP ProcessPro Edition

4.50 (10 reviews)


About SYSPRO SYSPRO is an enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution that is industry-built and provides last-mile capabilities for manufacturing and distribution businesses. SYSPRO provides the solutions, processes, and tools to...Read more about SYSPRO

4.19 (98 reviews)

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PENTA is an enterprise system that manages every aspect of accounting, project management and service for construction, engineering and service firms. Delivered via cloud hosting or on-premise, PENTA provides functionality fo...Read more about PENTA ERP

4.00 (4 reviews)

Ramco ERP

Ramco ERP on Cloud is an enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution. Businesses can access real-time data related to their manufacturing, financials, supply chain, customers, personnel and more, including built-in business intell...Read more about Ramco ERP

3.75 (12 reviews)

Buyers Guide

Last Updated: November 12, 2022

What is ERP software?


Enterprise resource planning (ERP) software offers a set of tools that share a common process and data model, covering end-to-end operational processes, such as accounting, analytics, inventory management, customer relationship management (CRM), and human resources (HR) management.

Put simply, ERP software unites otherwise segregated processes into a central data network, helping businesses better track information while gathering insights from across the departmental spectrum.

Here's what we'll cover:

Benefits of ERP software

It might be a mouthful to say, but an ERP software system has plenty of benefits for businesses to chew on. Let's discuss a few of these.

  • Streamlined business operations: An ERP solution stores and tracks data across an organization, from warehouse management to benefits administration. Many ERP packages provide these functions as built-in software modules, but some also offer users the option to integrate stand-alone third-party tools, thus consolidating disparate applications into a single, unified ERP system.
  • Workflow automation: By leveraging advancements in artificial intelligence (AI) technology (e.g., machine learning, natural language processing), an ERP solution can automate routine business processes and free up human capital to focus on tasks that require human intervention.
  • Advanced analytics: ERP software offers greater analytical depth than other stand-alone systems, pulling a wealth of data from across your business into detailed and easy-to-decipher analytics dashboards that provide both big-picture insights and granularity.
  • Enhanced accessibility: With an increasing number of cloud-based options and internet of things (IoT)-enabled functionality such as smartphone access, ERP applications offer businesses unprecedented visibility into day-to-day operations. And all that information is accessible in real time, giving users the ability to retrieve and modify data on the fly.

Competitive advantages of using ERP software

In a rapidly evolving technology landscape, businesses that utilize an ERP software solution to streamline operations will reap benefits such as:

  • Increased operational efficiency: Through process automation and lean workflow management, an ERP platform can significantly boost operational efficiency and productivity.
  • Better data management: Data mismanagement and disorganization can stagnate a business, preventing it from reaching its full potential. But with ERP software, individuals across a business can find the information they need in a single system, rather than juggling multiple tools and risking duplicate or inaccurate data.
  • Informed business decisions: With advanced analytics comes deeper insights, giving decision-makers greater breadth of detail and a better understanding of business initiatives. The reporting capabilities of ERP software empower leaders to make more informed decisions and better position their business for success.

Business sizes using ERP software

Because of the costs and resources necessary to implement on-premise systems, ERP software has been traditionally associated with large enterprise businesses. But with the increasing availability of cloud computing solutions and Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) ERP subscription models, the typical buyer profile has expanded to include the following:

  • Small-business buyers: These are companies with two to 100 employees that make less than $50 million per year and have no IT department.
  • Midsize-business buyers: These companies also have two to 100 employees and make less than $50 million a year, but they have an IT department.
  • Enterprise-business buyers: These are large companies that have more than 100 employees, make over $50 million a year and have a dedicated IT department.

Features guide

Common features of ERP software

To adequately compare ERP software solutions, it's important to understand the functionality each vendor has to offer. Here are the most common features found in ERP software systems:

Accounting Manages financial transactions with general ledger, accounts receivable, accounts payable, and payroll functionality.
Business intelligence Uses analytics to analyze and report business data and help companies make smarter business decisions.
CRM Tracks interactions with prospects, customers, clients, and/or partners across departments.
HR management Manages traditional HR activities, such as personnel tracking, benefits administration, talent management, and employee training.
Inventory management Helps companies track up-to-date information about their product supply and maintain optimum stock levels.
Supply chain management Monitors goods as they move from manufacturing facilities through distribution centers to retail stores.

Feature details and examples

Accounting: Accounting is one of the most basic yet the most developed functions of ERP software. It helps businesses manage and automate core accounting operations, including payroll, fixed asset tracking, and other financial management processes. Because ERP software consolidates disparate business processes, users can analyze financial data from across their organization in a single system.

Accounting dashboard in Odoo (Source)

Business intelligence: To assess business performance, companies need detailed and insightful analytics data, and ERP software provides exactly that. ERP software's business intelligence functionality includes customizable dashboards that illustrate operational data from across an organization, giving leaders the insights they need to analyze performance and make informed business decisions.

Business intelligence dashboard in Sage Intacct (Source)

CRM: The CRM module manages customer data, ranging from client information and prospective leads to help desk resources and live chat interactions. It not only gives businesses a more comprehensive and accurate view of their customer data but also allows for the automation of client-related activities, such as order processing, so you can anticipate their needs before they even contact you.

Sales pipeline forecast in SAP S/4HANA (Source)

HR management: ERP software broadens the scope of HR management by automating core HR functions, such as timesheet management and benefits administration. With employee data and advanced reporting capabilities at its disposal, it also aids in more strategic initiatives such as employee evaluation and recruitment.

Employee details management in ePROMIS (Source)

Inventory management: With features such as AI-assisted inventory tracking, ERP software helps businesses maintain optimum supply levels while avoiding overstock and product outages. ERP software’s predictive analytics capability can anticipate any spikes or dips in demand, and if inventory levels get low, the software can send out alerts and even automate replenishment.

Inventory management in ERPAG (Source)

Supply chain management: The supply chain management module in ERP software helps streamline supply chain processes, from procurement through production to distribution. It includes functionality such as demand tracking, cost optimization, and delivery efficiency, with assistance from ERP software’s real-time inventory monitoring capabilities and process automation.

Purchase order entry in Microsoft Dynamics GP (Source)

ERP buyers' top-requested features

Among the buyers we've spoken to, the most sought-after features are pretty evenly distributed. Financial accounting functionality is the outlier, with 84% of buyers desiring this particular feature.

Pricing guide

For an accurate snapshot of what ERP software costs, download our Pricing Guide.


What are the key functions of ERP software?

As discussed in the "Benefits of ERP Software" section above, ERP software provides several key functions for your business, including:

  • Streamlined operations: Store and track data from across the organization—including third-party integrations—to consolidate and streamline business functions.
  • Workflow automation: Automate routine processes and free up human capital with AI and machine learning. Order management, inventory control, financial management, human resource functions, and sometimes even basic project management tools can be automated.
  • Advanced analytics: Get big-picture insights and gauge the success of business initiatives with detailed reporting and analytics dashboards.
  • Enhanced accessibility: Utilize IoT-enhanced platforms, such as cloud-based software and mobile apps, for better visibility into daily operations.

What should I ask vendors when evaluating ERP software?

Getting hands-on experience through product demos, while important, is not sufficient to evaluate ERP software options. You need to ensure that your preferred ERP software not only streamlines operations but also addresses business concerns. Engage with the vendor's sales representative and ask some tough questions, such as:

  • How does the system architecture leverage emerging technologies?

The ERP landscape is evolving at a pace we've never seen, with new technologies such as AI and third-party integrations becoming near ubiquitous. An ERP software system's longevity—and your investment—therefore depends on whether these technologies are baked into the underlying system architecture, rather than tacked on after the fact.

  • How much will it cost to secure and maintain access to desired capabilities?

If you're handing over the funds for an ERP software solution, you probably want to know how your money is being spent. Ask your vendor to detail all of the initial costs (e.g., procurement and implementation), ongoing expenses (e.g., support and subscription fees), and avoided costs (e.g., ditching your old CRM software).

  • What services are available to support implementation and deployment?

ERP implementation is often long and laborious, which is why many vendors offer services to guide you through the process. Businesses with limited or no IT expertise should inquire about such services and evaluate the vendor's response time and attentiveness before signing on the dotted line.

  • What long-term strategies are in place to improve your products and services?

Buying a new ERP solution is a long-term investment and should support your business needs for at least three to five years (likely more). To get the most out of your purchase, ask vendors what their product will look like one year, five years, or even 10 years down the road to gauge its future viability.

What is postmodern ERP?

As software integrations became more prevalent, a new "postmodern" breed of ERP systems emerged. In short, the term refers to the selective adoption of stand-alone software integrations to form a unified system rather than the adoption of a single, monolithic piece of ERP software. For deeper analysis, read our article "Postmodern ERP: What It Is and Why It’s Important."

What’s the difference between on-premise and cloud ERP software?

Traditionally, ERP systems were hosted on and deployed via on-premise servers. But today, nearly every ERP vendor offers some form of cloud-based deployment, or SaaS. A cloud ERP system is hosted on the vendor's server and accessible through a web browser or mobile app. Read about the advantages and disadvantages of each in our article "Cloud ERP vs. On-Premise ERP."

What are some drawbacks I should watch out for?

Successful implementation of an ERP software solution requires significant capital and exhaustive preparation. Without them, implementation failure and damaging financial losses are likely. Here is an analysis of 22 failed implementation projects to help you avoid a similar fate.

Given this degree of difficulty, ERP software isn't a viable solution for every business—especially small businesses that lack the necessary resources. But the barriers to entry are lower than they've ever been, with lower upfront costs and more industry-specific offerings. If you're on the fence, check out our article "When Does a Company Need an ERP?" for a list of telltale signs that it'd be a worthy and wise investment.

Tips and tools

To equip yourself with the ERP knowledge you need, give the following articles a read:

Relevant articles

Popular ERP system comparisons

Market trends to understand

Here are few trends in the ERP software market that you should be aware of:

  • Adoption of cloud-based ERP software on the rise among SMBs: Though businesses of all sizes use cloud-based ERP software, its adoption among small and midsize businesses (SMBs) is increasing. This rise in adoption can be attributed to the various cost benefits offered by cloud-based ERP, such as ease of access, flexibility to scale operations, lower upfront investment, and elimination of maintenance hassles.
  • ERP vendors to offer industry-specific customized systems: There’s a growing demand for ERP software systems tailored to meet the requirements of specific industries. In line with this demand trend, ERP vendors are expected to offer more-personalized ERP systems for each industry.
  • Growing use of mobile ERP: With organizations increasingly allowing their employees to access company resources on mobile devices, many ERP vendors are upgrading their solutions to offer mobile functionality. Mobile ERP helps users access company data and perform business operations, both back end and front end, from any location while on the move.

Software related to the ERP market

Several software categories are related to ERP, whether as a subset of the software or a stand-alone system that focuses on a core component. They include:

  • Cloud-based ERP system: Allows large businesses to manage and track resources and information across various departments and segments with tools delivered through cloud-based deployment, including business intelligence, inventory management, CRM, and HR.
  • Inventory management software: Offers features such as product categorization, sales and purchase order tracking, electronic scanning, and automatic ordering to help businesses track their product inventories through various stages of the supply chain process.
  • Manufacturing software: Provides functionality to plan and execute manufacturing projects from beginning to end by automating materials planning, production tracking and scheduling, and product lifecycle management, among others.
  • Supply chain management software: Manages the entire spectrum of supply chain activities, from sourcing to distribution. It enables the automation of time-consuming processes, such as procurement and warehouse picking, and enables a data-driven approach to supply chain management.
  • HR software: Helps business owners, recruiters, and HR departments attract, hire, manage, and develop employees. Applications such as payroll and attendance management can streamline operational needs, while performance and learning management can optimize worker engagement and productivity.