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How to Reduce the Burden of Re-Quoting

Scott Frew
Scott Frew

How many hours a week (or even a day) do you or your team spend on requoting?

It’s one of those grating tasks that can create a lot of unnecessary re-work and consume a large portion of time in any renewal specialist’s week. But, with a few simple tweaks to your processes you can significantly reduce the burden of having to re-quote for the same opportunities.

Here are some recommendations:

Make sure your customer requirements are clearly defined

Renewal contracts come with a variety of options. Verifying upfront your customer’s preference for one year or three year quotes and service hour requirements of 24/7 or 8/5 can significantly reduce your time re-quoting.  The obvious rule of thumb, quote the renewal based on the same specifications as the previous contract.

Where feasible, quote on all support offerings

In the absence of specific instructions from your customer, it is a good idea to offer all support options. For example, you can quote one year and a three year contract options with both 24/7 and 8/5 hour support. This provides your customer with opportunity to consider all the options. Furthermore, if the customer typically renews on an annual basis, showing them the three year option may be an opportunity to ‘upsell’ and promote a multi-year contract. Remember, locking in a multi-year renewal will save you repeating this exercise the the next 2 years.

Ensure correct pricing is provided first time

This sounds simple, but pricing information can change regularly (especially if dealing with exchange rate changes). Unless you’re quoting the same service all the time, it is always worth double checking the pricing quoted. Verify this information via your partner program portal (if you’re in the channel) or via internal systems (if you’re the vendor). Often vendors have pre-determined margins for distributors and VARs so refer to this documentation if it’s available.

Use a system to calculate FX

If you’re operating in an international environment, the challenge of quoting based on a foreign currency price-list adds another layer of complexity. My recommendation is to use a system to calculate the price in your local currency. Exchange rates can change literally every second so it’s much easier to rely on a system that sets a fixed rate, say, every week or month (and that introduces a buffer to the prevailing exchange rate) than to manually calculate it every quote. With a sufficient buffer, you will reduce the risk of quoting below cost simply because the exchange rate has changed.

Start with clean and accurate data

Rubbish in = rubbish out.

At iasset.com we work with customers to cleanse and monitor the accuracy of their data. We realise that starting with clean data is often easier said than done, however it will make a big difference. If you start with errors at the data entry point, it will carry through the entire lifecycle of the contract. Even if you only discover an error during the quoting process, it’s worth fixing the error at the source of the problem.  

With so many variables you’ll never completely avoid having to re-quote. However, by being conscious of the potential hurdles, the majority of issues can be resolved at the initial quote stage. This will significantly reduce the time you spend on re-quoting. Over time, with our recommendations you will significantly increase your quoting efficiency and the number of times you need to re-quote will be greatly reduced. 

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