In a highly competitive, high-volume sales landscape, deals are made and closed quickly. The pace of business is accelerating, and so are sales cycles. To gain and maintain a competitive edge, sales teams and sales leaders need streamlined, efficient processes. Yet many businesses have complex sales scenarios that make the quote-to-cash lifecycle difficult to navigate efficiently without making costly errors.
Quote-to-cash: An approach for workflows
There are challenges when it comes to quote¬-to-¬cash workflows—most of them related to the manual steps required to push the quote, sales order, contract, and invoice out the door. These non¬-revenue generating activities eat away at the profitability and efficiency of sales operations.
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Automating these activities gives ‘selling days’ back to your sales teams each month. The end-to-end process of going from quote-to-cash is more of a minefield than many business leaders realize, and can take significant cycles away from your sales teams’ productivity. Understanding the hazards can help you and your company negotiate the process more effectively.
Let’s take a look at one way the sales process can be automated and how it can streamline the quote-to-cash process:
Generating proposals, quotes, contracts and invoices
There are several customer-facing documents — such as proposals, quotes, contracts and invoices — used to manage the customer lifecycle. A company’s sales team may configure deals that are complex, with dependencies across products and pricing. That sales team can start by automating document generation directly through Salesforce. Salesforce CPQ provides automation while also giving control to key members of the sales organization to ensure that discounts and packaging make sense. This way, it’s guaranteed that salespeople will be able to sell a workable combination of products within set price windows.
Combining solutions for a customized workflow
Every organization has a variety of needs and requirements that must be met through a unique combination of solutions. By leveraging multiple solutions in a “technology cocktail” , a company can:
•Automate the administrative data, document, and contract tasks related to even the most complex business scenarios
•Create a new way to interact with Salesforce data, turning any list view in Salesforce into a spreadsheet experience, making it easier to view and act on the data that drives business
•Produce multi¬-format, enterprise ¬grade documents to support pre-to post sales activities, like proposals and marketing collateral with rich text and images
•Deliver redlining capabilities that ease negotiations and speed up the sales cycle
•Provide automated rich reporting for clean and actionable insight on our activities in Salesforce
•Set up and maintain pricing rules, product features, options, and bundles through inline record editing
When a company chooses a templated document solution that is highly customizable, sales leaders can easily modify documents to create a consistent brand experience. They can also leverage the technology to send quotes, contracts, and invoices all at the same time.
Since each company’s quote-to-cash situation is unique, when it comes to finding solutions, one size does not fit all. Each company must take the time to step back and study its quote-to-cash needs so they can formulate the right mix of solutions to drive efficiency, and ultimately, sales.