Most of the time, the standard quote manager in SuperOffice is enough to satisfy your needs when creating an offer. However, some users may have trouble streamlining this process as they have specific demands and requirements that create friction when putting together their quote. i-Centrum has developed a tool to simplify this process – Quote Management (QM).

The background.

Creating and administering the actual quote or order is some of the most time consuming, and often most frowned upon, stages of a sales process – and we see time and time again SuperOffice users lacking proper routines to do this. We often run into customers who use different templates for the quote, the contract and then for the final order –  they will use one word template to populate the initial quote, then when agreed upon another to put together the contract for their customer to sign. Finally, once everything is agreed upon, they need to navigate an equally complex ERP system to create the order. Its no wonder people feel the pressure when they need to administrate three separate documents in order to complete the sale.

Our aim with QM is to simplify and create an effective workflow regarding the work with quotes, contracts and orders. Regardless of what the user in SuperOffice is selling, QM should be able to be a flexible platform for adoption to support this. As such, it is very important for i-Centrum to create solutions that build upon the standard functionality of SuperOffice in order to minimize implementation complexities. Therefore, the administration of QM is primarily done in the same manner as you administrate quote. We use the same fields, lists, et., but use them slightly differently and with added logic for the user interface.

The Process

The diagram below is a simplified sales process that shows you how the link between hand-over from sales to “service/delivery”. Highlighted are also where the different solutions or tools come into play. Quote Management is built to handle generating the quote, and GetAccept to engage the customer and collect the signature. Once signed, this will trigger an order in the ERP system automatically while the client facing delivery process is initiated.

Standard Quote Manager In SuperOffice

What’s in it for you? Should you adopt Quote Management from i-Centrum? We have identified a few key pain points our customers experience when working in standard quote manager that are of great importance and that the system currently has no support to.

“KIT´s” or packages of bundled solutions/products:

Certain products (example: cash register) are comprised of several groups of sub products. They could be hardware components, software, accessories and consumable goods. Some articles are mandatory and have to be included, others are optional add-ons.

When you add your products and “packages”, you will see a summary to the right in the QM tool.

Multiple addresses:

A common workflow is for a company to send an invoice to their customer at one address and deliver the goods or services to another. It is a tedious process to add two addresses every time and QM allows you to store and easily select which address is relevant for each stage. As the transition to delivery and customer service is key, i-Centrum has created a solution that seamlessly connects with the ERP system to minimize the administrative load.

Financial partners:

It is becoming increasingly common for customers to rely on a financial partner to allow for monthly instalment payments on the full cost, more commonly known as leasing.

For example, you use a financial partner to split up a quote for $100,000 into 36-month payment. While the quote you register is for $100,000, the customer will be invoiced for $2777 each of the 36 months that the lease is active. While the financial partner receives an invoice for the full amount, they will handle the monthly payments (and most likely an extra fee for financial services) – meaning the customer is billed accordingly. This multilevel relationship needs to be handled at the Quote creation phase, and QM supports this.

Recurring sales:

Different sales have different invoicing intervals that vary with contract duration, which is usually determined by the customer. A contract for 24 months may be requested to be split into monthly or yearly payments – which will generally also incur extra costs for more frequent invoicing. QM supports this and creates the amount of quotes requested by the customer and weighs in any extra costs.

Discount:

Handling discounts is a science in and of itself given how many ways there are to do it, and we understand this. One common example is when a discount is applied and you want the same total amount, even though the articles in the quote may change. Another might be to mass update all quote rows with a certain percentage. QM is designed to be able to support these types of specific discount cases.

Quote statistics:

Quote Management has a feature that summarizes all quote articles sold to a particular company and groups them in an overview, to allow for a historical oversight of how many articles a particular customer has purchased. This is a significant upgrade over standard quote manager where you need to summarize each quote individually and tally the results.

Business rules:

Quote Management supports advanced rules and logic for handling specific articles – for example you can’t save the quote and move to the next step unless certain fields have been filled out or parameters have been satisfied. This could be as simple as a customer choosing Article X, prompting a script that forces them to fill in information about Article Y. While this can be done in standard quote manager, it quickly gets messy and requires a lot of clicks and upkeep.

Default settings is a business rule that simplifies the experience for users, and in “additional settings” in the QM module we can have a lot of different rules and parameters set.

Use MORE field:

The more field on the company or sales card can interact with Quote Manager to minimize the number of clicks by auto populating information from there. You can, for example, define a fiend on the more card for invoice interval or invoice type or other quote related information, and then Quote Management will automatically write those parameters when creating the quote.

Sum up of the quote

Quote Management will summarise all parts of the quote to ensure a more complete overview.

Quote documents:

Quote Management excels at how we handle and produce the actual quote document. A few features:

  1. Not all articles need to be listed on the quote, only those that are “toggled” by the user.
  2. Support for MS Words, PDF or other file types. As PDF does not work all the time, MS Words allows for making adjustments on a document once it has been created.
  3. SuperOffice uses a “table” that you can not control for placing information and data. With Quote Management you can specify for example that certain data should come on page 4, other parts on page 8 etc.
  4. Full control of the tables on how data is displayed. Depending on what you are including in the quote you might want to separate the data using a variety of different labels. One table is “nr of users/licences” but when listing services, you want other data and headlines to be there, example “nr of hours”.

Simplify approval process:

Quote Manager gives the possibility to simplify specific rules for approval and is not limited to the standard SuperOffice rules. One case might be that you give the customer 45 days payment terms, with an additional three months for free. Not only can you have custom rules, but we have also designed a solution where it will be very easy for the management department to approve. In SuperOffice Pocket (mobile app), we have added a feature that exposes the quotes that need approval, making it easy for the decision maker to take action.

There are more things that can be done, but most of them are also available in standard quote. The central idea of Quote Manager is that you have one tab/interface for the entire process in a more easily digestible digital package.

Administration

Our goal is to use standard SuperOffice CRM as much as possible to make the administration of different solutions easier. However, some specific rules and logic must be handled by the programming in the Quote Management module.

Pricelists

We store all pricing information in the same lists as standard SuperOffice CRM, meaning customers should be familiar with how to administer the tool.

Different lists

Use the standard quote and product lists in SuperOffice admin to maintain data.

Import of products

Use SuperOffice admin to import the products into the different pricelists.

Update old articles that are stored in several places. This is a highly relevant question, as the above import example won’t solve this and you will need to make 39 individual imports – and is one that Quote Management aims to provide a more efficient workflow for. The idea is that if you update an article in quote admin, all products with the same article number should automatically be updated. How well this works is dependent on your setup and settings, requiring a more detailed dialogue with us.