Deal desk is a place and a set of cross-functional workflows to help your sales team close deals (that don’t break the company) as fast as possible. We only have one recommendation for Deal Desk people. Don’t be Williamson in Glengarry Glen Ross (Warning: Graphic adult language).
Sales operations process orchestration at a high level can be seen in the picture below.
Below are the 7
Sales inquiry is the first inkling that the prospect/existing customer may be interested in your organization’s product and services. Sales inquiries can come from many sources and the key is to channel these inquiries into a consistent workflow to ensure all inquiries are addressed and appropriate action is taken in a timely manner.
Many organizations as a matter of business process (government organizations, for example) issue Requests for Information to qualified vendors. Other organizations use RFI as a way to research the marketplace and get more intelligence about potential vendors. In either case, your customer facing teams are notified. When a prospect or existing customer issue an RFI it is more or less close to being an opportunity. Time is of essence and your sales team or appropriate customer facing stakeholders need to be alert and respond (or not) to these Requests for Information.
We were surprised to discover that many sales operations systems and processes miss the RFP/RFP Response workflows. When your sales team is asked to respond to an RFP it usually means that they have been selected as one of the few vendors to provide a formal proposal. If the proposal is accepted by the customer a detailed SOW may be needed and signed off before a purchase order is issued. RFP and related MoU/SOW is the preferred approach for complex deals.
Sales Opportunity is what drives large parts of the sales processes and CRM system. We can even say that it is the object around which the whole CRM industry revolves. Many CRM systems come with reasonable approach for workflow using stages and approvals. It is also done to death by SFDC so we will leave it alone.
Sales quote is where rubber meets the road for most companies. Companies can use Configure/Price/Quote (CPQ) systems or just any method that is practical and supports your organization’s needs to create quotes. Once the quote is created there is usually need for internal approvals and approval from customers, contracts, Statements of Work, MoUs, Customer PO, and whatever your company’s and the soon-to-be-new-customer’s finance and legal teams add to the mix before a sales order is issued.
New customer onboarding is a critically important process when a prospect is becoming a customer for the first time. For many organizations it can promote and increase customer satisfaction as well as reduce revenue risk and quote-to-revenue cycle time. An example workflow is shown below. Learn more about New Customer Onboarding.
The final workflow is the fulfillment workflow. You can use this workflow to coordinate internal teams and partners (suppliers if they are directly delivering to the customers, distributors, systems integrators..) so that products and services are delivered as promised an on time.