With the CPQ market rapidly saturating the antique “spreadsheet” world, it can be rather challenging to take measures as drastic as that of shifting your company’s originally manual sales process to a more automated system – challenging nonetheless profitable.
Read below to see if these benefits align with initiatives that you see across your business:
- Reduced burden on Financial teams – Irrefutably, modelling and winning complex deals with direct customer input should be easy to do without having to trouble a financial analyst. An ideal CPQ system should allow you to look at ROI rates, payback and IROR etc. thus enabling you to turn fixed assets into subscription deals; again, without having to trouble and/or burden the finance and pricing teams every time there is a complication in costing, pricing, discounting, margins and what have you. Customer collaboration on a deal enhances and positively influences and increases customer loyalty, renewal rates and retention. The ability for us to reiterate, which is essentially us being the “first to market, first to respond”, is what further facilitates us in building loyalty and increasing customer responsiveness.
- Improved Customer Retention – Did you know that it costs five times as much to attract a new customer than to keep an existing one? Having said that, customers still like options and so, with the ability to configure, customers are sure to stick around for longer; not to mention the speed with which quotes roll out and deals are filtered and signed.
- Improved Retention of Sales and Technical Resources Organization – One of the little talked about benefits of CPQ is how Configurations eliminate a lot of mundane work, and free resources like Sales Engineers and Tech Architects to focus on other aspects like launching new products faster (configuration of other complex products). Since the cost of hiring and retraining new resources impacts the organization massively, an underlying benefit of CPQ is that it allows you to better manage your sales teams by enabling them to focus on the customer, while quoting and document creation is being taken care of; resulting in salespeople staying with an organization. Additionally, a CPQ system brings productivity boosts – rapid deal flows and reduced close times, to name a few. These enable the salespeople to hit quotas like never before, thus further strengthening their relations with their companies.
- Improved Resource Planning = Improved Productivity – With CPQ handling all product and pricing rules as well as all approval processes, companies can put their resources to work executing tasks that they are programmed to execute. In simple words, Engineering, Product Management, Sales Engineers, Marketing and Management can very well stay out of the quoting process. What many organizations don’t know, or don’t acknowledge, is that increased productivity will further empower their representatives to quote and close. What’s more, eliminating errors that eat up time, an ideal CPQ system can estimate and forecast the resources (human, technical, computing) that would be required to support the deal which enables the finance teams to plan and see if they have available resources to efficiently deliver the deliverables. By easily and conveniently rolling out the asset requirements, products and services can be delivered in a timely fashion. In short, better asset utilization for the company ensures customer satisfaction.
- It’s complex decision making, simplified – The digital world is changing by the minute and these constantly changing paradigms call for agile systems to follow suit. There is no denying the fact that configurations make life easier; imagine this: You are out to purchase a vehicle. You come across one vehicle manufacturer that merely offers a static marketing brochure that lays out all of the available options in models, colors, sizes etc. where your pool of options can appear to be rather limited and there’s not much you can play around with. Then there’s another vehicle manufacturer who allows you to browse through all of the different models, personalize the colors to see which combinations you like best and try different add-ons like gear transmission systems, stereos and ground clearance configurations etc. As you mix-n-match the different options to see which end-product suits you best, the ensemble of the vehicle changes, and you can clearly see how your choices are affecting the price and appearance of the vehicle. Once you have found your perfect vehicle, you may gather all the information pertaining to the specs, and pricing of the vehicle and decide as to which vehicle manufacturer qualifies and proceed to make your purchase/conduct business with them. Vaguely similar – but technological configurations too make your life that much easier. Research shows that every twelve to eighteen months, computers double their capabilities, and so do the information technologies that use them – are you keeping up?
There are a number of CPQ providers; including Salesforce CPQ (Steelbrick), Apttus, and SAP CPQ (Callidus), that help technology companies optimize their sales processes in an environment where products are always changing and evolving. We have it on good authority that servicePath is the only one that’s exclusively focused on technology, as we shift focus away from products and more toward outcomes and solutions.