By Craig Fulton, ConnectWise
If you’re a VAR, system integrator, or solution provider in the technology space struggling with quoting a large variety of products and services, you’re not alone. Quoting projects for your clients means navigating a lot of complex variables and that often includes conquering a beast of a spreadsheet lurking in your sales quoting process. Complicated costing formulas, manual upkeep, and a lack of standardization on output for clients, makes spreadsheet quoting a nuisance to your business.
Initially, you may say your spreadsheets are “working fine,” but in the long run these will cause a time-consuming, painful, drawn-out sales process full of human error and inaccurate data. Even if a spreadsheet can get a quote out the door, it’s still a disconnected island of information with no automatic, auditable flow into key internal systems.
If you’re stuck in an antiquated world of manual quoting processes, chances are you don’t have clear visibility into the history of your quotes or what’s sitting in your sales pipeline. While your sales reps will diligently create and deliver quotes to their customers, they may not be as interested in manually updating opportunities and forecast information once the quote is done. Or conversely, their forecast may contain numbers not supported by delivered quotes. Without some intense manual data entry (and someone dedicated to generating business intelligence reports), you’ll be hard-pressed to find reliable forecasts and opportunities.