What is Quote-to-Cash
For a sales process to be accurate and efficient, it must be designed to include every aspect of the sales cycle, from the initial engagement through the final purchase.
Quote-to-cash aims to solve this by creating a cohesive, connected process that considers every step of the sale—from the sale to the transaction to the application of the transactional data. With an optimized quote-to-cash process, you minimize errors and improve the customer experience while simultaneously improving data analysis and forecasting.
Common Quote-to-Cash Challenges
Like any process that involves multiple people, systems and interactions, even seemingly minor disconnects in the sales cycle can create a number of challenges. Data entry errors on quotes and invoices can create problems with fulfillment. Manual data entry can delay order processing. Forecasting mistakes can lead to inventory problems. And in every instance the customer experience suffers, ultimately, so can customer loyalty.
This use case looks at how intelligent process automation, also called intelligent automation, or simply IA, augments the quote-to-cash solution.
Intelligent Automation for Quote-to-Cash
Quote-to-cash simplifies the sales cycle, and process automation improves it. With the bulk of the data already structured and a reliable process that can be easily tracked and adjusted, quote-to-cash is an ideal use case for Intelligent Automation.
IA can be used for the entire quote to cash (Q2C) process, from quote to order (Q2O), configure-price-quote (CPQ), order to cash (O2C), fulfillment, account provisioning, new customer onboarding, and even renewals.
Integrate existing applications you already use—like web apps, payments, CPQ, CRM, accounting, ERP and others—to make the Q2C process faster, more efficient, and flawlessly accurate. Immediately generate quotes, and trust that they are always based on the latest data and rules. Turn them into sales orders instantly, without any manual effort. Keep all customer, contract, and pricing data in sync across your tech stack to accelerate the Q2C process and convert closed deals to revenue faster.
Powerful document processing.
Technologies like Natural Language Processing (NLP) and computer vision can be combined to extract data from a range of documents—including emails, orders, invoices and more—while natural language generation (NLG) can be leveraged to dynamically generate quotes, contracts and custom reports.
Smooth connections between applications.
The EPSoft Intelligent Automation Platform makes it easy to connect, validate, map, and convert any record, object, standard or custom field between any application. And it does it using real-time or scheduled workflows, Q2C data, CPQ records, and payment processing—including Salesforce. Keep all your Q2C data across any application up-to-date to ensure every deal, contract, and invoice gets processed as quickly as possible.
Significantly reduced data entry.
With the support of automated bots programmed to perform data entry and data processing (along with virtually perfect accuracy and 24/7 productivity), sales teams are relieved of cumbersome time-consuming data tasks and are freed to focus on more value-based activities, and shortening the time to close.
Instant quote creation.
Stop wasting time on manual quote creation in spreadsheets. Instead, build workflows that automatically connect to RPA technology—which will extract your prospect, customer, pricing, and renewals data across every application in your revenue stack. This lets you apply custom logic and generate the perfect quote in real-time, every time.
Improved forecasting with better data management.
Bots can also be designed to deliver parsed data to and from management systems like ERPs, and analyze it as needed. This not only minimizes errors for quotes, orders and invoices, but also works to improve forecasting with more accurate and faster data analysis.
Improved methods for revenue recognition.
Like the accounting principle of revenue recognition, an IA-powered quote-to-cash solution does not consider the end of the sales cycle the closing of the sale. But rather, the cycle completes when that transaction has been realized and applied into backend systems, where it can be properly analyzed, attributed and used for forecasting. Because the cycle itself is optimized, so too is the process of revenue recognition, allowing businesses to better attribute revenue and ultimately improve the customer experience.
More upsell opportunities.
Intelligent process automation technology can also alert sales teams to potential upsell opportunities during the quote process. The technology can flag specific fields in your CRM, or simply add relevant expansion language to quotes, so your team maximizes every order.
Getting started with IA for Quote-to-Cash
When incorporated as part of a strategic quote-to-cash solution, IA can help improve the sales cycle with measurable impacts on key performance indicators across sales, accounting and customer experience.