Enterprise resource planning (ERP) and point of sale (POS) systems are both integral components of many modern businesses. These two terms are so widely used and so commonly misunderstood that they can sometimes be mistaken for one another. While POS and ERP functionality does differ in several key ways, they are both highly capable of improving the efficiency and productivity of businesses within various industries.
Today, we will be defining enterprise resource planning, point of sale systems, and why your business might want to consider integrating these two options to maximize the benefits of each!
Understanding Enterprise Resource Planning
Enterprise resource planning, frequently shortened to just ERP, “is a process used by companies to manage and integrate the important parts of their businesses…An ERP software system can also integrate planning, purchasing inventory, sales, marketing, finance, human resources, and more.”
Many companies utilize a form of ERP whether or not they realize it. Without an ERP system, organizations may have multiple separate computer systems, apps, or other software methodologies that do not communicate with one another. ERP can be thought of as the common thread between different departments, products, and technologies within any organization. The core of ERP is about making organizations run efficiently.
For businesses, ERP systems are ideal for omnichannel compatibility. This allows consistent payment processing and monitoring for purchases made in any number of ways, including:
And much more
Point of Sale (POS) Systems for Businesses
Point of sale terminals, frequently shortened to just POS terminals or POS systems, are “hardware system(s) for processing card payments at retail locations. Software to read magnetic strips of credit and debit cards is embedded in the hardware.” In other words, POS systems are the hardware that processes payments from in-person transactions, acting as a payment gateway for businesses.
POS terminals are a technological step up from traditional credit card machines. While modern credit card machines are certainly capable of processing all manners of payments quickly and securely, POS systems often have more customization, capabilities, and horsepower. To explore these capabilities, let’s explore the features of a cutting edge Clover POS terminal:
Powerful hardware: POS terminals have more than enough power to process credit cards, debit cards, and other electronic or cash payments. Simultaneously, POS systems track and store relevant data from transactions for later use from businesses.
Aesthetically pleasing and easy to use interface: Another key difference between a credit card machine and a modern POS system is the user experience. Clover POS systems feature one or more HD screens for employee/customer use.
Customization: Because Clover POS systems offer available native and third-party apps, the underlying functionality can be customized to meet business needs. Business owners can run reports in real-time, fully control their app library, and much more.
Reasons to Integrate POS and ERP Systems
Now that we have reviewed a bit about what makes point of sale terminals and enterprise resource planning products valuable on their own, what makes combining these two powerful concepts even more useful? There are several key benefits of integrating your ERP and POS systems, including:
Consistent and consolidated reporting: POS systems are the perfect front end for capturing accurate and detailed transactional data. ERP systems are the perfect back end for storing, organizing and analyzing that data. When information is cheap, organized and analyzed information becomes even more valuable.
Creating a centralized hub for your business: the days of rooms full of file cabinets and paperwork are (mostly) in the rearview mirror, but that does not mean that business organization concerns went with them. Instead, the biggest risk to business data is software decentralization. By utilizing POS systems and ERP systems in tandem, your business will have a central location for all of your software systems.
Improving business efficiency and forecasting: So far we have mostly spoken about generalized concepts, but how do these benefits truly make a difference in your company’s bottom line? ERP and POS system integration can have a major impact on profitability by increasing efficiency and allowing businesses to accurately forecast revenue, inventory management, customer trends, etc.
Much more: To understand how these two powerful tools can work in tandem to help your business, consider speaking to an experienced merchant service provider who offers these products. Native integration can make all the difference for businesses of all sizes!
True Merchant Offers Comprehensive ERP and POS Packages
True Merchant is proud to offer both point of sale (POS) and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) solutions for businesses of all sizes. With our focus on merchant services and secure payment processing, POS and ERP systems are a natural extension of our other features such as CardSecure, EBT Payment Processing, and much more. With True Merchant, you can rest assured that you will be getting the best available price thanks to our complimentary rate reviews.
If you are considering a POS system for your business, please feel free to contact us by calling 1-888-770-2018 or through our online email form. A qualified merchant service professional will be waiting to walk you through the process!