CPQ or Configure, Price and Quote tools are mostly cloud-based platforms to enable the business automate their commercial activities like responding to customer inquiries and RFPs. The success of such CPQ platforms depends a lot on the Functional Leaders who can ensure these platforms meet business need and deliver business requirements as well as on the business sponsors for long-term sustainment. The most common benefits of rolling out & sustaining a CPQ platform include:
- Productivity savings (Shorter cycle time, commercial throughput increase etc., less keystrokes/quote)
- Improved winning ratio (more purchase orders, more closed deals)
- Quality of our proposals/documents (configuration accuracy, pricing integrity, marketing materials etc.)
- More revenue (may not be directly, but definite impact on revenue)
Now, with all the benefits of a CPQ, big question comes up is that where does CPQ fit in the world of Commercial Digital Thread?
CPQ belongs to the Supply Chain Network of digital thread. CPQ is an integral part of digital thread, for:
- CPQ enables the digital data transfer between CRM (Or Customer network) & CPQ, CPQ & ERP and CPQ & Analytics engines; eliminating duplication of data entry, improving accuracy of data and taking advantage of existing digitized platforms
- CPQ streamlines the configuration & pricing across the globe, and can tap into Industrial Internet to make the digital thread even more robust
- CPQ standardizes proposal (customer facing document) & contract management (may need different platform integration) across the globe, while keeping the sales forecasting always up to date
However, the success of CPQ platform’s ability to deliver fully digital commercial systems depends on several factors:
- Getting the right CPQ platform to meet specific business need (key for CPQ success itself)
- Integrating the CPQ with all other digital platforms (key for digital thread success)
- Design the digital thread with CPQ in it (key for enterprises’ digital journey)
As we move more and more towards industrial internet, value of data transfer digitally is crucial for our success and CPQ can help us out for sure!