It can sometime take something very simple to make a big difference in a corporation. In this case, it involves how a Smart Process App transformed the sales review process for a Fortune 500 corporation.
Proir to turning to Smart Process Apps, an internal audit for this global industrial company revealed some process weaknesses around sales activities. Although the design of these processes was effective and compliant, the execution of these processes suffered due to user inconsistencies and a lack of transparency of the overall progress toward goals. People were often over-included or the process could take an inordinate amount of time to complete.
Since the company deals with multi-million dollar sales quotations and deals on a regular basis, it was vital to quickly and consistently produce, review and finalize quotations and contracts in order to increase profits. It also needed to ensure that contracts for current high-risk, high-dollar clients had the appropriate balance of review and service.
All sale quotations entered the approval process with an evaluation by a cross-functional group that determined the level of review each quotation needed for approval. The approval level was tiered according to the size and specifications of each quotation. So, for example, a top-tier quotation (high dollar and high priority) might involve review from a larger number of individuals (from sales, legal, accounting, etc.) than a quotation that involved a lower amount of money or services.
Prior to introducing the Smart Process Apps from Onit, the company relied on emails to navigate this approval process. The level of review would be determined. The sales rep would email the quotation to the first reviewer and that individual would then review and edit it as necessary. If more information were needed, then he or she would have to return it to the sales person. The questions would be answered, the first reviewer would approve it and then it would move to the second reviewer.
This process would potentially be repeated multiple times across many stakeholders before the quotation could be approved and submitted to the prospect or client. Even if all reviewers were contacted at once, relying on email proved to be a burden to providing a quick, responsive review.
Without room for collaboration and shared information, the same questions could be asked numerous times, information could be changed without knowledge as to why it changed, keeping track of the latest version of the quote was a challenge and the process ultimately reduced the pace of review.
How did Smart Process Apps Make a Difference?
The adoption of Smart Process Apps from Onit greatly increased the transparency and speed of the quotation review process. The easily customizable app streamlined the process by automating the workflow for approval according to each quotation and its tier of approval. When initiated with just a few clicks and keystrokes, the quotation would quickly travel from reviewer to reviewer and could easily be configured to alter that workflow as necessary.
A collaborative workspace ensured that all knowledge around the quotation – including versions, questions or edits – was stored in an easily accessible location. Users received notification of all changes and could access the app and its collaborative workspace via smart phones, tablets and laptops.
Most importantly, this Smart Process App made it extremely simple to identify who was currently reviewing the quotation and how long it has been undergoing the review process.
The Contract Review & Approval App has now been deployed to the worldwide sales force and has significantly accelerated the quotation review process. To date, quotations worth billions of dollars have passed through the App for review at a far quicker pace than email review.
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Image courtesy of Jeroen van Oostrom / FreeDigitalPhotos.net