Cutting corners to implement CPQ quickly might be tempting for you, but we urge against it. We find that lack of prep-work prior to a CPQ implementation plays a major role in projects going awry. Being unprepared for CPQ can not only cause delays in your implementation project, but may lead to mistakes, or failure in adoption later on.
According to Accenture’s recent study, Empowering your Sales Force, 56% of sales reps felt that tools that were rolled out to their team weren’t customized for their needs. Adding technology and tools for your sales team shouldn’t be a light-hearted process. Take the time required to bring your sales and manufacturing organizations together and document the essentials for your CPQ project.
What documentation do you need for a CPQ implementation project?
1.) UI fields
What options do your customers have to configure your products? UI fields demonstrate just that. CPQ allows you to build an interface that includes user interface elements such as:
- Yes / No questions
- Drop-down lists
- Text fields
- and more…
If your products can be customized in numerous ways, they will likely require many UI fields to understand price and timeline impacts. Map all of the customizations that can be made and determine what UI fields you need to provide customers with their purchasing options.
2.) Data Tables
Determine what data tables you need in order to build your configurator logic. This may include current versions of:
- Pricing calculators
- Product spec sheets
Ensure the data is clean and laid out correctly for integration with your CPQ software of choice. If you’re unsure of how to layout such data, then ask an implementation expert from your chosen tool which file formats and data formats work best with their tool.
3.) Product Configurator Logic
Once you have all UI fields documented and all data tables built with accurate data, then you’re ready to start thinking through your product logic. Document what logic is needed for product configurator(s) so that your technical teams can get to work.
In the configurator, technical teams can set-up logic that becomes the backbone of your CPQ program. Building in all UI fields, building in various product specifications and managing variation capabilities can all be done within your product configurator.
4.) Pricing data and rules
Your technical teams will not just need product logic, they’ll also need to understand how that product logic relates to pricing. Does a certain product variation increase price? Does set-up or installation increase price, or timeline?
Determine the pricing data and rules that your configurator needs early and document them so that technical teams have everything they need to implement accurately.
Once a quote is ready to be generated, your customers will want to see their product, price estimates, and other agreements. Creating templates that map to your customer experience can help reduce the time to quotes by automating much of what a sales rep might otherwise need to do manually. Document what you would like the following to look like when generated from your CPQ tool:
- CAD templates
- Excel templates
- Word templates
By documenting examples of how you’d like the end result to look for each of the above you eliminate confusion for implementation teams.
6.) CAD files
A CAD file, or computer-aided design file, works to illustrate the technical details of your products. Gather all CAD files to be imported into the configurator scenes so that you can visually display your products in 2D/3D to the world.
In order to best document everything needed from all teams, gather your sales and manufacturing organizations and all other project stakeholders to review documentation and ensure accuracy.
It is best to speak with implementation teams at your software of choice’s organization to understand what the requirements of their configurators are.
Not sure if you’re CPQ-ready? Read our implementation guide to understand where to start.