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What is an integrated ERP system? Benefits and features

What is an integrated ERP system? 

An integrated ERP system pulls together data and functionality so you can use one software system to manage your entire business.

With ERP modules integrated into a single system, everyone works from and updates the same data.

This also facilitates workflow automation, streamlined processes, more accessible, timely and accurate reporting and better decision-making.

With an open platform, you can also integrate additional third-party applications and services to extend the functionality of your ERP.

When do you need an integrated ERP system? 

When you need an integrated ERP system depends on your business operations, goals, size, reporting requirements and complexity. 

Here are some signs that it's time to think about ERP migration:

Too many errors

Mistakes mean staff don't trust their data and clients or suppliers get incorrect information. 

Time wasted on data entry

Your people spend far too long on what should be simple tasks like processing payroll, sending invoices, reordering stock, or generating reports.

Stricter auditing and reporting requirements

You have strict industry compliance requirements that you need to meet, which are hard to achieve when maintaining manual processes. 

Management, finance, sales and marketing are less effective

These departments don't have the data they need or the ability to automate basic functionality and customer communications.

Systems that integrate with ERP software

If an ERP has an open architecture, you can integrate third-party applications and services to extend the ERP functionality.

Here are some examples of common integrations, although many ERPs will have these functions already built in. 


Ecommerce businesses can benefit from integrating their online store with their ERP system, so data flows seamlessly between the two.

For example, online sales will update stock numbers in the inventory management software. The system integration will ensure your customers always see the correct price if you're using dynamic pricing. 

Project management software

Project management software gives managers a complete view of your project details, including real-time field updates.

Integrated with your ERP system, your project managers, back-office and management get an instant flow of information, making it simple to track everything from activities and changes to job costs.

MYOB Advanced Business has a project management workflow built in. 

Business intelligence software 

Business intelligence (BI) software lets you slice and dice information to inform decisions with broad analysis or deep insight.

Linking BI to your ERP system ensures the software has comprehensive operational and transactional data to deliver more accurate and timely insights. Business intelligence is another core feature of MYOB Business Advanced.

Electronic data interchange platform 

An Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) system automates the flow of information like purchase orders, invoices and shipping notices between you and your suppliers or customers.

When integrated with your ERP platform, it eliminates many manual transactions, reduces errors and minimises data entry. 

Benefits and features of integrated ERP

The benefits and features of integrated, open ERP systems make them a must-have for high-growth, ambitious or complex businesses. Here is some of what these platforms can offer: 

Single source of truth

A single source of truth is a core feature of an integrated ERP. It means your business has one data set that people across your business access and update in real time, so everyone uses up-to-date, accurate information.

This minimises inconsistencies and errors, allows fast and accurate reporting, and enables workflow automation.

Improved efficiency and productivity 

An integrated ERP system delivers improved efficiency and productivity through its single data set and by integrating and automating business processes.

This eliminates repetitive manual tasks and errors, helps improve customer experiences and lets staff focus on more valuable work. Real-time reporting improves decision-making and highlights areas for improvement across the business. 

Reduced costs

Reducing costs is always an essential focus for businesses. An integrated ERP system can help cut overhead and operating costs by streamlining operations and minimising waste in every department. 

Real-time data 

Real-time data is another key feature of an integrated ERP platform. Staff and automated processes constantly update the central database automatically, ensuring business operations and reporting always use up-to-date and accurate information.

For example, say you receive an order through your ecommerce site. All the information relating to that sale is sucked back into the database, updating everything from your CRM and inventory levels to your profit and loss reporting.

That means the marketing team can always see what kind of products your customers have been buying and management can always get an up-to-date snapshot of the company financials.

When the inventory team reorders, they know what stock they have, what stock’s selling and what isn’t. Once new stock comes in, the database gets updated again, so your sales team can give customers accurate information about what’s available and lead times.

Faster decision-making 

Faster decision-making can have positive impacts on every part of your business. Good ERP systems support this with pre-built and customisable reports.

These are rapidly populated from your single data set, making reporting almost instant. 

Future-proofed technology

An open and integrated ERP platform lets you extend your platform in response to changing market dynamics and technological advances.

By adding on new capabilities in this way you future-proof your IT investment. With a closed platform, you may need to use additional software that doesn’t integrate with your ERP.

Supply chain optimisation 

An ERP system supports supply chain optimisation. The real-time visibility into inventory levels, production schedules and order status significantly improves everything from customer experience to inventory management

Automation can handle tasks like order processing, invoicing and shipping, while an optimised production reduces lead times.

Your ERP system can also track and manage your suppliers and let you spot risks and opportunities for improvement in the supply chain

Integrated ERP system FAQs

What are the three most common types of ERP? 

The three most common types of ERP are cloud, on-premise and hybrid. 

  • Cloud ERP systems store all your data online or in 'the cloud', so users can work from anywhere and on any device, accessing their data and software via the internet. 

  • With an on-premise ERP, your software and data is on your server, so users may need to be onsite to access it, depending on whether the company has the infrastructure to allow remote access. 

  • Hybrid ERP is a mix of both, giving companies a balance between the flexibility of the cloud and the security and control of in-house servers.

What's the difference between an integrated and non-integrated ERP system?

The difference between an integrated and non-integrated ERP system may come down to whether it is an open or closed platform.

Open platforms let you seamlessly integrate with a marketplace of third-party apps and services, so you get all the functionality you need in one system. 

A closed platform doesn’t allow for this easy integration with other applications as a single provider fully controls it.

If businesses do need extra functionality, they may have to use third-party solutions alongside their ERP, resulting in data silos and inefficiencies for the business.  

Make integration your must-have

An integrated, open ERP system is essential for most larger, complex or ambitious businesses.

It enables digitisation and automation of business processes, which reduces errors and improves operational efficiency while giving your people access to deep, accurate and timely reporting. 

Unless you manage legacy systems or have strict security requirements, an open cloud ERP system like MYOB Advanced Business will be your best option.

It powers your whole business by connecting projects, accounting, payroll, financial management, inventory and more.

You can also extend the functionalities of MYOB Advanced Business with third-party applications and services available through our app marketplace. 

Learn more about how MYOB ERP solutions could help you succeed at scale with specialist industry ERPs for construction, manufacturing, wholesale distribution and professional services  –  get in touch.

Disclaimer: Information provided in this article is of a general nature and does not consider your personal situation. It does not constitute legal, financial, or other professional advice and should not be relied upon as a statement of law, policy or advice. You should consider whether this information is appropriate to your needs and, if necessary, seek independent advice. This information is only accurate at the time of publication. Although every effort has been made to verify the accuracy of the information contained on this webpage, MYOB disclaims, to the extent permitted by law, all liability for the information contained on this webpage or any loss or damage suffered by any person directly or indirectly through relying on this information.

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