Enterprise resource planning (ERP) is a type of software designed to help a business plan with the use of its assets and resources. An ERP is an integrated system that allows different departments to exchange data and information. Functions performed by an ERP platform include financial data management, business assets management, and personnel and workforce management. Without an ERP, businesses normally have separate software for each function, and the different types of software may not be able to exchange data among them. Companies that manufacture ERP platform software include Infor Global Solutions™, Oracle™, and the Sage Group™.
One of the primary advantages to running on an ERP platform is that data are made available to people who need it more quickly and easily than in systems that do not integrate data into an ERP platform. Since ERP is itself a platform, a platform of this type is often called ERP. By definition, an enterprise is a business that is built to make a profit. This is in contrast with businesses designed simply to support the employees in the business.