Distributors: How to Connect Your Quote-to-Cash Process
Encompassing a number of business functions, the quote-to-cash (QTC) process involves every step your sales team takes from configuring a quote to when payment is received for a product or service. It links sales, order fulfillment, account management, billing and accounts receivable activities. When these functions are disconnected, inefficiencies can result. Fortunately, an ERP system like Acumatica ties them all together in a single platform, which helps improve reporting, customer service and accuracy.
What Is the QTC Process?
All functions related to an organization’s sales activities are covered under the quote-to-cash process. Marketing functions such as inbound sales activities, cold calling and prospecting can be considered sales activities. Nonetheless, the QTC process begins when sales personnel deliver a quote to a customer or prospect. It continues all the way until the order has been placed and delivered-and the cash revenue from the sale has been received and can be included in an organization’s analysis and reporting system.
Key steps in the QTC process:
- The firm gets the opportunity to deliver a quote to a prospect
- Software is used to configure an offer, during which:
- Upon approval, a proposal and agreement are drafted (the prospect “converts” into a customer/account)
- The customer places the order
- Your organization processes the order
- An invoice is generated
- Once the customer pays, the cash is collected
- Data are collected, analyzed and reported
With data analysis, opportunities to improve the sales process may emerge from all the information gathered during the QTC process. This is where you need a centralized platform to manage all associated actions and enable accurate data analysis and forecasting.
ERP and the QTC Process
The first step in applying an ERP solution to your quote-to-cash process is proper implementation. You need to analyze how your business functions and deploy the software based on what works and what needs to be improved. The implementation strategy is just as important; a phased implementation can address one function at a time, such as distribution or sales management.
The next stage is to identify key performance indicators (KPIs) to measure. Shipping times, customer demand and inventory trends are just some important KPIs to look at during the QTC process. Other areas to consider include financial KPIs to track sales, cash flow and costs, while operational KPIs measure inventory, transportation schedules, customer service and on-time delivery. Identifying trends is just as important. To do this, you need historical KPIs to measure past performance and predictive KPIs to use as insights for making predictions and important organizational decisions.
Acumatica Distribution Edition brings all this information together via centralized custom dashboards. Providing access to business-critical applications from any location with role-based access control, it helps manage and streamline financial, sales and other processes. Real time updates mean changes can be made, seen and analyzed from any location, improving visibility, accuracy and productivity.
We work with companies that want to improve their QTC process with ERP software. If you want to see how ERP can help you convert more prospects, turn more quotes into orders and bring more cash in the door faster, let’s talk.
Additional Distribution Industry Resources
Top 3 Challenges Facing Distributors and How ERP Solves Them Best Practices for Implementing Distribution ERP Software How Distribution Firms Can Use KPIs to Improve Performance and Grow
Originally published at https://www.cortekx.com on November 15, 2019.