06 May 4 benefits of Salesforce CPQ for the warehouse industry
by Shane Howard
Around the world, warehouses are riding a surge of growth as they race to keep up with global manufacturing. In the United States alone, warehouses have expanded 20 percent over the last decade, representing a $22 billion industry that now employs over 600,000 people. With so much at stake, there isn’t a lot of room for human errors and antiquated systems that result in the loss of reputations, earnings, and customers.
As your warehouse looks for ways to stay competitive and profitable, you’ll quickly find that automating your CPQ (configure, price, quote) processes with Salesforce CPQ can help you meet the needs of your sales reps while ensuring customers receive a high-quality experience. You can improve the speed and efficiency of your warehouse, stay better connected, enhance inventory accuracy, and lead the competition by using Salesforce CPQ.
Give customers confidence
Every time a customer invests time and money into placing an order, they are also expressing their trust that you will be able to deliver those products efficiently according to specification. Making sure your sales reps have a comprehensive, up-to-the-minute snapshot of your inventory will protect you from having to deliver impossible product configurations. As customers configure orders, Salesforce CPQ ensures that your warehouse is in a position to fulfill quotes for complex products accurately and on time.
As a result, you will find an increase in customer loyalty and a smoother running business that provides quick and reliable turnarounds.
Questions often arise over contracts, approvals, or special instructions after an order is placed, which can slow warehouse productivity. From the front office to the back office, Salesforce CPQ uses the cloud to connect every channel in real time with authenticated, user-friendly order details. Enabled through Lightning, you will be able to instantly access all vital information right on your smartphone or tablet from anywhere in the world. This eliminates the need to waste time trading messages and chasing voicemails to confirm important details. Meanwhile, you will welcome a reduction in order mistakes, resulting in deeper customer satisfaction and a happier sales force.
You can also use Salesforce CPQ to manage warehouse logistics and shipping options better. For example, many warehouses are using hundreds of shipping and freight options—juggling multiple contracts, wishes, and expectations. With CPQ, you can present the best option for each partner based on a wealth of data: price, weight, destination, volume, discounts, etc.
Too much of a good thing
One of the most common—and costliest—challenges that warehouses face is storing surplus inventory. In addition to taking up valuable space, excess inventory drains valuable resources and negatively impacts the bottom line. Another common inventory challenge is the inability to identify appropriate product substitution options. You may have products that meet the same specs on an order that could be pulled in as an alternative, getting rid of older inventory and improving revenue—you just don’t it.
By connecting your team with Salesforce CPQ, you can rely on a wealth of analytics to provide insight to detailed, year-over-year customer buying trends. This data intelligence will help you forecast with confidence and avoid stocking products with longer, unnecessary shelf lives, or identify product substitution for increased order fulfillment. Giving your senior and middle managers reliable and predictive intuition will enhance their ability to take a proactive role in reducing costs and increasing measurable performance.
Staying ahead of the competition
Like many companies, you may find yourself in a position where you are deeply invested in imperfect and time-consuming manual tools to manage your sales and fulfillment processes. The thought of replacing these complex and expensive systems by engaging the Salesforce CPQ solution may be a difficult choice. However, it is the logical next step if you want to remain competitive. With a 20 percent annual growth rate predicted through 2020, CPQ is being adopted by forward-thinking companies that want to streamline their operations and stay ahead of changing economic and industry trends. Instead of watching others succeed from the sidelines, Salesforce CPQ can help you lead the way.
Experience the difference
Is your company still using primitive CPQ systems that leave your warehouse battling human blunders and inventory inaccuracies? If so, then your warehouse deserves the advantages of incorporating Salesforce CPQ into your workforce to better serve your customers, become instantly informed, manage your inventory, and stay ahead of the competition. You stand to discover a new level of satisfaction as you evolve to meet the needs of your customers more fully.
Shane is the VP of Global Operations at Simplus. With his expertise in Professional Services, Operations, PMO, and Software Development and his experiences in partner, C-level, VP, and Director positions in a variety of industries, Shane thrives in operational excellence. He solves complex internal and client-facing problems with scalable solutions.