The quote-to-cash (QTC) process encompasses many sales, account management, order fulfillment, billing, and accounts receivables functions. It considers the steps taken as your sales team configures a quote and drafts a proposal for a client, through to when payment is received for services rendered.
What is the quote-to-cash process?
The quote-to-cash process covers the end-to-end functions related to sales activity for your organization. Typically, configuring offers for a prospect is listed as the first true step of the QTC process. While there are often some sales activities that occur along with marketing functions even earlier in the buying funnel—cold calling, prospecting, inbound sales activities, and so forth—the opportunity to deliver a quote is generally seen as the first measurable, concrete QTC function.
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The process of Salesforce Quote-to-Cash involves Salesforce CPQ along with the following actions:
Configuration: The first step is to ensure that the products and/or services provided are tailored to your client’s individual needs and presented in a way that demonstrates that understanding.
Pricing: All prices are not made equal, which means you’ll have to keep the client top of mind when you begin pricing your offer. Make sure to consider specific discounts and special offers you might provide each customer.
Quoting: It’s time to wrap the last two steps up in a bow to present a cohesive quote to your client. Here’s where Salesforce implementation gears down to provide an organized, accurate and timely quote.
Negotiation: Contracts are an essential aspect of the QTC process, as you’ll want to ensure that every party involved is on the same page. It’s crucial that this is clear-cut and meticulous to prevent confusion, delays, or even the loss of the sale entirely.
Order Management: Once the contract has been negotiated and agreed upon, your team should begin cataloging invoices, monitoring the products, and handling shipping.
Invoicing: The penultimate step consists of accounting for all charges made and sending a precise bill to the client. The invoice covers all pricing components established during the sale, so be sure to refer back to the initial quote as well as anything that may have been amended since.
Payment Receipt: To wrap the process up, you’ll have to provide a receipt that is just as accurate as the steps prior.
How can quote-to-Cash and CPQ solutions benefit your business?
Quote-to-cash and CPQ solutions that are enhanced with CRM technology can help optimize your entire quote-to-cash process. By taking everything that sales managers need to see a sale finalized, CPQ solutions can effectively eliminate the downtime and inaccuracies that plague the quote-to-cash process. Here are several ways that an effective CPQ tool can improve your business:
Automation Creating proposals, quotes, contracts, and other vital documents takes time, and leaves little room for error. CPQ solutions allow your sales managers to automate these important steps. By pulling from all relevant data, CPQ tools can create accurate, professional documents at the push of a button.
Guided Selling The best sales reps are able to quickly identify which products or services would be the best fit for each customer. Advanced CPQ solutions gather and analyze client data, creating a detailed picture of who your customer is, and what they care about. This gives sales managers an edge when it comes to selling. It’s so effectives that sales representatives who use CPQ are 26% more likely to achieve their quotas.
Faster Turnaround By ironing out the wrinkles in the quote-to-cash process, CPQ tools can drastically shorten client turnaround time. Automated contracts, easy access to client and product data, and the ability to effectively manage and report on revenue all result in a sales process with no speed bumps. You and your clients can keep everything moving at the right pace.
Improved Accuracy With contracts constantly being sent, reviewed, revised, etc., there are a lot of opportunities for error to creep in. By taking advantage of CPQ solutions that draw from reliable data sources to auto-populate forms with the right information, you can take those kinds of errors out of the equation.
Personalized Service With so much riding on the quote-to-cash process, it can be easy to start to think of your clients as little more than numbers. However, by recognizing their individual wants and needs, you can improve your client relationships. Personalized offers and discounts can help incentivize leads into finalizing a sale.