Efficient revenue lifecycle management can improve back-end efficiency while delivering a better customer experience
The enemy of predictable revenue growth is complexity.
Organisations often get bogged down by manual paperwork and administrative tasks, only for this to hinder productivity and harm the customer experience. Similarly, operational siloes develop that make it harder to collect data, stopping firms from gaining vital insights about their businesses that leaves money on the table.
A legacy mindset can make it hard to break out of this mould. But what if you could automate and streamline your core processes? What if you could make the sales management journey smoother, freeing up valuable time to focus on opportunities that drive your business forward?
Better ‘revenue lifecycle management’ is key to meeting these goals, helping firms achieve a smoother sales management journey from the back office through to the front end.
By automating its core systems and processes, a company can more effectively sell its products and services, manage cashflow and contracts, maintain good customer relationships and stay on top of compliance and risk. By deploying a holistic enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution – rather than using multiple standalone ones – that firm can avoid data siloes and gain proper oversight of their company’s inner workings.
One of revenue lifecycle management firm Conga’s clients is global insurer Allianz, which uses Conga to enhance productivity in its health division, Allianz Care. The business was growing fast, but after about a year of working in Salesforce it realised it needed a more efficient way of transferring the data it collected into documents.
The process it had been using was manual and cumbersome, wasting time and resources that would have been better spent on higher value activities such as building customer relationships. “It was very important that we be able to absorb the growth of our business by enhancing our tools and a key element in that was Conga,” says Alexander Bender, global head of customer relationship management at Allianz.
The team integrated Conga Composer into Salesforce, using it to reconcile documentation between new proposals and business proposals in various languages in order to enhance the customer experience. It also used Conga Grid to provide searchable insight into data, quickly and efficiently.
Overall, Allianz Care was able to avoid adding to its headcount and instead reallocated resources to more valuable tasks.
It was a similar story at the global news and information business Thomson Reuters, which used Conga to enhance sales efficiency and the customer experience. Thomson Reuters provides content, expertise and technology solutions to help lawyers, bankers and accounting professionals make critical decisions. However, its customers were frustrated by the company’s slow response rate to sales queries and long quoting cycles.
To tackle the problem, Thomson Reuters used Conga CPQ to automate and streamline its quoting process. Now, the firm can process a much larger volume of products and pricing rules, enabling it to handle complex quotes more quickly. It has achieved a 90% reduction in order configuration time, a more consistent sales experience for customers, and reduced held orders by 95%.
“We needed something that’s nimble, agile, and best in breed,” says Craig Eiter, vice-president of sales enablement at Thomson Reuters. “After assessing all the vendors, we felt Conga CPQ was by far the best enterprise order capture solution; it would enable a seamless experience for our sales team while automating much of the quote process.”
Front and centre
Transforming revenue lifecycle management may seem like an overwhelming task, but Conga’s chief executive, Noel Goggin, recommends approaching it in steps.
“Start with the big picture of what you want to do in your business. How can you automate the processes you have today within the definition of your revenue lifecycle? Next, look at how you can start integrating those processes into the upstream and downstream systems. How can you build momentum within your organisation by proving concrete, tangible deliverables that bring meaning to the business?”
When it comes to revenue lifecycle management, the biggest risk to business is complacency. In a more competitive landscape, companies must be nimble and optimise every aspect of their core processes. Those that don’t face being left behind when it comes to data insights, processing and maintenance, invoicing and payment and customer support.
“There are too many unpredictable external factors today with supply chain, economy, politics, that we cannot control but running a more efficient business is one we can,” says Goggin. “Companies need to move to a customer lifetime value mindset and managing revenue as a lifecycle puts that front and centre.”
Revenue lifecycle revolution
For over 15 years, Conga has helped its clients to enhance their revenue lifecycles, serving some 11,000 businesses in sectors such as financial services, high tech, health and life sciences and manufacturing. Founded by software industry veterans, the Colorado-based company began life by offering a tool to automate business quoting and pricing, a problem its directors had struggled with personally in the past.
Since then, it has grown to encompass a suite of tools that help simplify complex business problems, from configuration to execution, to fulfilment and the contract renewal process.
“We know from experience that businesses cannot afford to be slowed down by cumbersome, inaccurate manual processes,” says Goggin. “But the level of automation we provide gives a business insight and predictability of income, a rather uncommon but highly sought-after aspect of the solution. We like to say we crush complexity and simplify your path to revenue.”
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