It doesn't happen often, but on occasion a new customer will ask us to implement our Renewals Management Platform without integrating it into their other systems (e.g. CRM, ERP, Product Management, Marketing and other data systems). We appreciate that they don't want to waste any time getting their Renewals up and working for them. Yet we always suggest they reconsider and integrate our Renewals Management Solution with the others.
Our experience has proven that the time and effort their staff—and ours—spend in "Whole Data" Integration is more than time and effort well spent. Not tying renewals into everything else you do handicaps the data management program they're paying us to implement. As our success depends upon yours, here we'll explain why it's in everyone's best interest.
Renewals—and Most Data-Based Systems—Are an Ever-Changing Management Challenge
Once a customer fully understands the value of your products as it relates to the changing nature of theirs, they may discover many reasons for new plans. If, for example, a customer originally signed on for a one-year contract, then decided to purchase three years, anything outside your Renewals Management System would have to be adjusted manually—as would every other data point in your ongoing relationship with that customer.
Changing to a wholly integrated process automatically feeds modifications to your billing engine, sales and follow-up, et cetera, from day one. One point of data entry. All data points change.
Multiply the work it would take to implement the same revision manually across all relevant data classifications and you'll spend more time and effort across the life of our contract than you would spend on upfront Whole Data immersion.
Changing Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP)
Today's successful companies are light on their feet. Changes in product, pricing and account information along with fluctuations specific to your industry and individual accounts are not only common, but needed and expected.
Without proper data assimilation, a Renewals Management System will not be automatically updated with new products, pricing and entities.
Unilateral procedures will always require repetitive manual alterations. To stay ahead of today's robust Global Markets, anything less than Whole Data Integration can require adjustments so frequently that it isn't sustainable. Before you know it, it can morph from one employee inputting as part of their job to a full-time position.
Duplication and Flawed Effort
When systems aren't fully integrated, companies typically entrust data entry to a single employee. No matter how well-trained and conscientious that employee is, manually transposing data from one point to all others is time-consuming and monotonous. If your sales, product development and other teams have been especially busy, this person may be inputting change after change after change, system after system after system.
As we all know, this is a scenario ripe for confusion, unintended omissions and errors.
Transposition errors are the most common. Hours spent gazing into the monitor is numbing on the eyes, body and soul. Going from screen to screen, the brief lapses in-between hardly add up to a much-needed break. It's no wonder, then, how easily numbers can get mixed up, how lines and columns merge, how a comfort stop can change everything a person has been working on upon their return.
Multiply those possible, even probable, errors across all categories. It's not just a customer relations embarrassment. It's a time-eating, stress-feeding nightmare.
All of that adds up to lack of control. Try as you may, across-the-board manual data manipulation has virtually no controls to mitigate the impact errors have on your business, your customers' business, or your relationships.
New Renewals data being inputted should be the Control. If it's flawed, all bets are off. You'll end up with incorrect data reporting, billing, and even flawed or delayed delivery of your services.
A Fully Integrated Renewals Management System Exists in Part to Eliminate Human Error
Without Whole System integration, any business process improvement will fail. Your Renewals Management Platform will disintegrate into merely a Quoting Tool. Managing a Renewals business is much more than that. The Quote is important, but it must be part of managing the lifecycle of all your products and services.
A successful implementation minimizes manual manipulation, resulting in complete workflow automation—the direct opposite of what segregated, manual intervention creates. Renewals, which are high-volume and dynamic by their very nature, lend themselves to end-to-end automation. This is impossible to achieve without fully incorporating all other data groups with your Renewals Management System.
Incorporating renewals data with others needn't be complicated or time-consuming. It can be as simple and painless as using existing data extracts and reports prepared for other purposes. Refresh on a daily/weekly/monthly basis. Fully customize the what-should-be-automated task as per your systems and business rules and unique data requirement. Commit to business process optimization.
Save that employee for something you can't automate.
iasset.com helps companies build and optimize profitable maintenance renewal and cloud programs. Behind every profitable renewal or cloud business is a robust process that minimizes manual inputs, streamlines and automates repetitive tasks, deploying across a network of global Channel Partners.