There’s a lot of confusion going on around EAM and ERP — enterprise asset management and enterprise resource planning software. While they do often have similar functions and features and help companies in the same way, they aren’t completely similar. A slew of differences separates them.

The part of the problem lies in the fact that rarely which corporation uses and implements them effectively. Add to that their rarity, and it’s easy to see why so many entrepreneurs misinterpret both terms. In this post, we’ll try to remove these misconceptions and discuss how they differ in functions and business usage.

What is EAM

EAM is an acronym that stands for Enterprise Asset Management. Basically, it’s a software that manages the life cycle of material assets, inventory, vehicles, machines, and equipment. All in the goal of maximizing their lifetime, lowering expenses, improving quality and efficiency, asset health, and sustainability.

Corporations implement enterprise asset management systems to develop more complex plans, begin, optimize, and monitor maintenance tasks according to inventory, workforce, assets, tools, and data.

Moreover, EAM systems allow you to schedule preventive maintenance on your company’s assets. Preventative maintenance is based on the idea that you change the oil in your automobile on every certain number of miles, instead of when it falls apart. EAM utilizes this idea on a much larger scale for different kinds of assets.

The Difference Between EAM and CMMS

While some refer to enterprise asset management as CMMS — Computerized Maintenance Management System — these two systems are different, even if they have the same goal. Businesses predominantly utilize CMMS to manage activities during the life of assets. What we mean by this is it manages assets while they’re up and running. The principal features of CMMS include:

  • Planning maintenance
  • Monitoring asset data
  • Handling spare parts inventory and work activities

On the flip side, enterprise asset management systems are way more complex and robust since they supervise the complete life cycle of assets. In essence, the EAM platforms enable C-level executives to look at a much bigger picture when we compare them to computerized maintenance management systems.

Enterprise assets management systems outline the company’s objectives and let executives view how they can complete those objectives by including account budgets and finance, worker skill set, human resources, spare equipment, and assets data.

“Enterprise” stands for the scope of asset management across corporative locations, departments, plants, and supporting operational functions such as human resources, procurement, equipment, etc. These assets may be fixed as well — facilities, buildings, machines — but also moving assets such as vehicle fleets and ships.

The Difference the EAM and QMS

Yes, enterprise asset management systems do manage environmental safety, manufacturing, distribution, and quality. Yes, companies implement to increase manufacturing quality and efficiency. However, enterprise asset management software is not the same as QualityOne quality management software.

Corporations use EAM systems to increase productivity, automate, and consolidate manufacturing processes. For example, cost analysis, product management, and to account for capacity requirements. However, only quality management systems can make you audit-ready, anytime an auditor comes.

QMS enables you to adhere to CAPA — Corrective and Preventive Action — a necessary part of any quality management procedure. CAPA is especially important for the health sector and even the electrical sector, including pharmaceutical and medical device industries. In the United States, companies that fail to adhere to rules under CAPA may violate federal regulations regarding acceptable manufacturing processes.

However, CAPA is also a timely process brimming with errors and expensive tasks. This is where quality management software differs mostly from enterprise asset management software as it cuts hours or employee labor and business risk through data and document integration in a single location with all audit trails.

EAM takes a more holistic approach and isn’t viable for health-intensive industries like pharma. QMS can also let you :

  • Present CAPA reports at an instant.
  • Lower costs of quality management with dashboards and workflows.
  • Immediately discover and repair quality problems.
  • Implement corrective operations with accuracy.
  • Make sure your suppliers also meet your quality regulations.

Defining ERP

ERP is an economese word for enterprise resource planning. However, even this doesn’t explain the term and what enterprise resource planning software does. For this, we’ll need to take a step or two back and remember all the different processes that are necessary to run your company:

  • Management of purchase orders
  • Inventory management
  • Accounting
  • Finance
  • Human resources
  • Customer relationship management

At its simplest, enterprise resource planning programs integrate all these different operations under a single banner — or system — in order to streamline them and data collection and usage across your entire business.

The key characteristic of all ERP platforms is that you have a shared database that helps several organizational functions that various company departments utilize. Leaving the theory behind, this means that your workers in various departments — for instance, finance and human resource — can use and share the same data for their particular needs.

C-level executives employ enterprise resource planning platforms in order to manage and control a wide range of day to day activities in an even wider range of industries.

Some businessmen say the enterprise resource planning system is the jack-of-all-trades in the computing world, and for the right reasons. It covers a broad range of business processes and has various management tools for managing your complete business data. Such features have a broad umbrella of capabilities that you can implement or integrate with numerous other types of software.

However, keep in mind that you should always implement an ERP platform with the help of consultants that specialize in your particular industry. For example, if it’s a food and beverage industry, then you should find help from Food and Beverage Industry ERP Specialists.

The Difference in Scope of EAM and ERP

Regarding the scope of both platforms, enterprise asset management software is more narrow in scope and sometimes is a part of enterprise resource planning software. When EAM works as a separate platform from ERP, this often indicates that the business needs to concentrate on more particular activities and tasks, control them deeper, improve their operational time, effectiveness, and sees asset management as a crucial process that requires more plans.

On the other hand, enterprise resource planning includes business processes across a wider range of business functions. ERP is also often harder to implement, integrate, and deploy. This is because it is bigger in terms of platform deployment, software development expenses, implementation costs, and onboarding.


Now that we have a clearer sense of what both enterprise asset management and enterprise resource planning platforms do, their main differences should be obvious. The first is much narrower in scope — concentrating only on the management of maintenance and life cycle of your assets. On the other hand, ERP is much wider in scope. It can cover a wide range of features and business processes that are usually managed by various separate programming systems. And ERP does this all in a single platform.

While ERP often does have the same capabilities of EAM when it comes to asset management and financial plans, it doesn’t have all the capabilities. Yes, a lot of ERP platforms even come equipped with asset management modules. However, ERP can’t compete with EAM when it comes to small and complex details of assets monitoring. ERP can only do basic functions.

ERP is able to do some EAM operations, but not all of them. EAM is compatible for more particular, nitty-gritty operations than ERP. However, it also doesn’t come with any features outside of asset maintenance and supervision.

Guest writers and carefully selected for Career Enlightenment. Thanks for reading!

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