Guest Blog: Hector Villasenor, Director of CPQ at Canpango
Running a sales-focused organization successfully is difficult, and in a lot of cases feels downright impossible if the proper operational workflows aren’t in place or automated. The truth is, without the right Configure Price Quote software in place, you’re putting your sales team’s performance at risk.
Here are the six telltale signs that your sales team could benefit from Salesforce CPQ:
Companies that utilize Salesforce or a legacy CRM, but choose to lean on Google Sheets as a quoting tool, are deliberately encouraging a black cloud (pun intended) of pricing inaccuracies and decreasing levels of user adoption.
If a business fails to invest time and resources into systems that allow for single data entry and capture, they are (probably unknowingly) forcing their salespeople into an unnecessarily complicated multi-step process that is bound to provoke a downward trend in operational productivity and an increase in revenue loss. Without a proper CPQ solution in place, sales reps create an opportunity in Salesforce (or an alternative CRM), then generate a new quote in a spreadsheet external to the CRM by re-entering that captured CRM data manually. After the quote is completed within the spreadsheet, the user is expected to create a record of the product purchase in the CRM, update the deal amount and incorporate any other relevant data within the CRM.
This not only increases the risk of human error, it means your sales team is spending time on non revenue-generating activities.
Without reporting, there’s no way to rationalize future investments that improve sales operations through new software solutions or hiring sprees. Not to mention, if managers or C-level executives have no single source of truth to provide insight into each salesperson’s quoting stage, it becomes extremely difficult to forecast individual product (or service) sales numbers or accurately predict and solidify the calendar for upcoming discounts and promotions.
You can’t manage what you can’t measure.
Salesforce CPQ reporting provides transparency into how many quotes were converted into orders and how many upsells and cross-sells occurred within a given period.
In order to maintain a quoting system, an organization needs to be able to add or retire new products to or from their product catalogue seamlessly. It’s also natural for pricing structures to fluctuate, especially in the professional services industry, so if a business wishes to update a pre-existing pricing framework and/or apply tier-based pricing to specific products, a CPQ solution that’s native to Salesforce and houses all pricing data in one centralized place will make quoting system maintenance effortless.
In the event that a company wants to scale a quoting system due to international footprint expansion, they are required to sell within the bounds of a multi-currency pricebook. In addition, scaling a quoting system is commonly needed because specialized pricing is needed to account for unique customer relationships or account requirements. Finally, if a business is tasked with growing a quoting system but are in the process of transitioning from a legacy CRM to Salesforce or other mainstream cloud-based tools, it’s commonplace for that legacy quoting system to cause integration issues with the new CRM, which puts sales operations at risk.
Unlike the vast majority of legacy-built quoting systems, Salesforce CPQ has the ability to support volume-based discounting in an efficient way. For instance, in legacy quoting systems, salespeople are usually forced to create a massive amount of product records to accommodate an unnecessarily complex tiered-pricing matrix. Additionally, product configuration attribution is also limited, so sales reps are again forced to generate even more product records in order to accurately identify a product type.
The importance of streamlining a profitable renewal process is critical for businesses that occupy the software & technology space (as mentioned above). But in reality, a weak renewal process can stunt growth and decrease overall revenue potential for any company in any industry.
Here are some instances where companies are practicing poor renewal process practice and need to consider re-engineering renewal operations and translating and embedding those workflows within Salesforce CPQ:
If you have a poor renewal process in place, you’re probably suffering from:
The best salespeople are good at closing deals that provide their customers with the right solutions, but even the best salespeople can be downright terrible at managing renewals. With Salesforce CPQ, you can limit sales rep involvement and make money for them and the organization while doing so.
Pre-built templates like account statements, delivery notes, credit memos, reminders, finance charge memos, sales invoices, quotes, order confirmations and purchase orders are just a few examples of output documentation that salespeople rely on in their daily communications with customers. If sales reps aren’t able to easily generate output documentation quickly, the potential to lose deals (as well as retain sales employees) sky rockets.
Here are some examples of obstructed output document generation:
Approval processes are the gateway to officially reach closed-won status, which is why it’s a bonafide guarantee that any salesperson will have zero issue with expressing concerns about roadblocks that are obstructing approvals. My advice for leadership? Listen to their feedback.
If criticisms are similar to the below, consider a CPQ solution:
To learn how a preferred consulting partner can help you pin-point and execute a custom CPQ solution that meets your selling objectives, product catalogue development needs, promotions and discounting strategies, output documentation requirements and approval or renewal process flow, download and share this Salesforce CPQ data sheet.
Have more questions about CPQ solutions and how they can help grow your business? Connect with one of our consulting experts today.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Hector is an experienced Senior Salesforce and Configure Price Quote (CPQ) Consultant having spent 8+ years in the information technology services space. Applying his web development skills and strong software acumen, Hector offers his clients and internal team members with progressive ways to help organizations overcome complex business challenges through dynamic CPQ solution design and implementation strategies.
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