Enterprise systems are software applications that have cross-organizational capabilities as opposed to department or group-specific programs. They allow for collaboration and communication across the organization through collection of data that is accessible and usable by multiple departments.
Enterprise system software solutions evolved in the late 1990s and into the 21st century with innovations in database technology. Databases allow for efficient collection, storage and retrieval of limitless amounts of data on many contacts. This allows for information and process flow management in many areas.
Customer relationship management (CRM) is one of the most popular examples of an enterprise system. It is a popular marketing system that is used to optimize the customer experience and improve marketing efficiency. It relies on software tools and cross-organizational work teams for improvements in sales, service, marketing and support.
Enterprise resource planning (ERP) is often a component of CRM, but it is a glowing example of an enterprise system. It is software-driven and allows for cross-organizational management of resources, which reduces waste and improves timely utilization.