NEW REPORT: The State of CLM and AI-Powered Contract Intelligence

Customer, Configure, Contract, Close: The Cs You Need to Accelerate Digital Sales

By Peter Boit

Efficiency is clearly a priority for all areas of business, but when it comes to closing new business for the organization, the ability to accelerate sales cycles and cash flow is critical. An inefficient sales process coupled with today's unprecedented market disruptions can introduce risks, delay revenue, and add costs that can stifle even the most successful organizations.

The Case for Digitization

Many organizations have seen revenue disruptions during COVID-19, and sales leaders face increased pressure to recapture revenues quickly by delivering a personalized sales experience where customer needs are uniquely understood.

At the same time, many customers are shifting away from a growth mindset to a focus on cost optimization, and as a result, competition for revenue is tightening. In order to be successful in this business climate, organizations will need to demonstrate their understanding of each customer's priorities and the ability to rapidly respond to meet those needs throughout the sales process. This requires a digital transformation.

The Keys to Acceleration

By accelerating the lead-to-cash process, companies can stay out in front, now and into the future. Our research shows that through a seamless, unified workflow companies can reduce sales cycle times by up to 92% and deliver a frictionless buying experience to customers. This compelling point underscores why innovative sales leaders are now implementing integrated digital solutions that improve the speed, agility, and effectiveness of the entire sales process.

So, where does one begin on the road to digitizing the sales process? Start with careful consideration and integration of the systems that power the customer, configure, contract, and close processes. Each of these processes is powered by cloud applications that can integrate together for a faster, easier sales process.

  1. Customer (CRM)

In the increasingly complex sales environment, sellers need to take action based on insights, build strong relationships, and increase sales performance, all while maximizing productivity. Modern customer relationship management (CRM) platforms are built to empower sellers to better understand customer needs, engage more effectively, and win more deals. As these systems help organizations expedite sales performance, they are an ideal starting point for accelerating your entire digital sales process.

  1. Configure (CPQ)

As deals advance through the CRM system, your team will need to be prepared for the critical stage of delivering pricing proposals. Customers today expect fast quotes that demonstrate an understanding of their individual needs—from product and service offerings to pricing and delivery of documents for each deal. By automating the configure-price-quote (CPQ) process, sales teams are empowered to respond to customer quotes, bids, and RFP requests within minutes. Sales efficiency is also increased through the ability to provide analytical insights, deliver optimized price recommendations, and eliminate long price approvals.

  1. Contract (CLM)

Once the configure-price-quote process is complete, you have all the pricing data you need for a quick and seamless progression into the contract management phase. Contracts form the foundation of commerce and define how a business runs. Yet if your team has to double-enter all the pricing information that already exists in another system, you are introducing delays and risks to the process. By digitizing the contracting process with intelligent contract lifecycle management (CLM) software and connecting to the CRM and CPQ systems that it touches, organizations can speed up approvals, reduce paperwork, and simplify the sales contracting process.

  1. Close (e-signature)

The "last mile" of this entire process is when contracts are reviewed and signed, often by many individuals, across all involved parties. "Wet ink" signature processes are time-consuming, inefficient, and result in a higher risk of a step getting missed. By moving to an e-signature solution that's integrated with a cloud-based CLM, organizations can transform manual signatory processes into all-digital experiences and speed up every transaction in every department.

The current unprecedented times have accelerated the adoption of digital and self-service channels. Organizations now, more than ever, need a digital sales process that will enable them to respond extremely quickly to their customers' shifting priorities; deliver the right products at the right price, easily manage contracts under rapidly changing conditions; and make it easy for customers to sign documents from anywhere.

To make this seamless sales process a reality, Icertis has partnered with Microsoft, PROS, and Adobe. By uniting Microsoft Dynamics CRM, PROS CPQ, Icertis CLM, and Adobe Sign, we are delivering a complete lead-to-cash solution that enables organizations to improve the speed, agility, and effectiveness of their entire digital sales process.

To discover how we have come together to help sales leaders rapidly recognize revenues and deliver exceptional purchasing experiences for their customers, watch our on-demand webinar and read our eBook: Accelerating the Digital Sales Process.