November 16, 2019
Looking for something to take your business to the next level? Consider examining your Quote-to-Cash process for areas of improvement.
Quote-to-Cash is your businesses process of interaction with your customers from start to finish, and is vital for both maintaining current relationships, and creating new ones. From your original service quote, to the moment you receive your payment; there are various methods and programs you can implement to make the process as fluid and convenient as possible.
Remember, convenience and cooperation are key to impressing your customers. The happier you make them, the more likely they will continue to utilize your service. Which is why integrating different features into your process could not only serve the added benefit of convenience, but could decrease the time it takes for you to complete a sale, and start generating revenue!
1. Pricing and Sales Quote
Your pricing and sales quote are the key to drawing your customer in for business. In most cases, this will be your customers first impression of you and your product. Be clear and concise about the components of your quote, and focus on finding the right promotion or discount that is attractive to your potential clients, without cutting into profit margins. The more your clients believe you are trying your best to make the product work for them at a price they can afford, the more positive emotions they will have towards you and your business; and the quicker they will feel comfortable trusting you with their money.
2. Contract Creation and Negotiation
Once you come to an agreement on pricing, always follow up with a set of terms and conditions in a professional, timely manner. Keep in mind that your contractual obligations and promises carry a huge amount of risk, and must always be tediously examined to ensure the clauses are clear and concise for both parties involved. Giving both groups easy access to the contract can remove the need for extra time spent on inquisitions about the terms. Once these terms are presented to the client, negotiations may begin. Ensure that any changes made to the contracts are explained and reiterated to you as well as your client in detail, as this will cut down on the smaller more time consuming tasks needed from expensive legal advisers and professionals. Once the contract is finalized, make it a goal to get the contract sent, signed, and received as quickly as possible. Products like integrated or stand alone e-signature software can cut down on the monetary and time costs needed to speed this process along.
3. Order Fulfillment and Billing
This is crucial to your customer's satisfaction. The time that the order takes to be received, processed, and delivered, should be as short as possible. Making sure that each order and invoice is delivered to the correct recipient every time is especially important in establishing a reliable reputation for your business. Invoices should always be sent in a timely manner; and include a break down of charges, as well as information on when payment is due in order to encourage them being sent as quickly as possible. Friendly reminder emails and calls can also be especially effective in getting clients to pay on time more often. However, many of these steps carry the risk of employees error when done manually. Integrating automated invoice and accounting services (like Armatic) in your Quote-to-Cash system can almost eliminate the risk for human error; so that you and your customers have an order and billing system you can count on. The more fluid and connected your process is, the quicker and easier business dealings become
4. Revenue Recognition and Renewal
The moment you receive your cash may deceivingly feel like the end of your endeavors, but recognizing your revenue appropriately is vital; and carries a lot of risk if done incorrectly. Ensuring that contract terms, payment, customer information, pricing, and delivery schedules are readily available to the parts of your team (like Finance) that need it will greatly minimize the risk of incorrect revenue recognition, and eliminate any extra time needed to request the appropriate information. It is also important to stay on top of current customer contracts and subscriptions; as in many cases these contracts make up a large amount of your profits. Contacting customers when their contracts are coming to an end as well as making options for renewal for these customers simple and hassle free will greatly increase your amount of loyal customers and keep your business growing and thriving.
Not sure where to start improving your Quote-to-Cash process?
The Armatic platform was built to streamline all steps in your revenue lifecycle from proposal to payment. Solutions include integrated proposals with e-signature, billing management, payments, Accounts Receivable automation and much more.
BY Alyssa LeBlanc
BY Max Golovnia
BY Alyssa LeBlanc
Alyssa is handling content development and content planning for Armatic and works closely with our product and development team.