In a previous blog article, we gave an overview of the services a software solution should provide in order to automate your serviceability and costing needs. This article will focus on building upon the costing automation to apply automatic markups for any sales channel.
Many of our customers report having been told by external software vendors or other internal stakeholders that they can provide an “automated” markup solution, but those customers learned the hard way that the term “automated” has different meanings for different people.
MasterStream believes that a fully automated markup process includes:
- Determining serviceability, cost, and markup within two minutes of starting the process for one or multiple locations
- Avoiding a solution that takes multiple steps to handle each portion of the quote lifecycle or positions your sales team behind a quote interval totaling hours, days, or weeks
Basically, we believe that all of this work should be done within a few minutes.
Additionally, your software must automatically mark up the price to match each sales channel. If getting a price for your direct, agent, or wholesale channel involves multiple workflow steps or systems, you are not automated. If your sales rep or partner cannot get quotes within minutes by themselves, you are not automated.
In this blog post, we dive into the key capabilities your software needs in order to be equivalent to MasterStream’s SalesEdge product’s power and features.
The primary benefits of using software that incorporates rules-based algorithms are that your company is not using subject matter expert labor or fancy spreadsheets to produce the correct solutions. Instead, you are able to lower operating expenses and accelerate sales velocity with a software solution that incorporates rules-based business intelligence.
Using MasterStream’s product, pricing can change based upon many different factors, but the most common methods relate to the following:
- Participants: Pricing logic can change based upon the participants in the quote, including the submitter, the responder, third-party partners, and more.
- Network geography: Pricing can change based upon the relationship between your network or supplier asset as well as geographic conditions such as market, local access and transport area (LATA), state, region, distance from your core network-to-network interfaces (NNIs), and more.
A Full Slate of Pricing Methods
Your software solution requires pricing methods that allow your sales organization to segment your products granularly and price your products accordingly. The tail is wagging the dog if you are forced to price things more generically because you can’t segment your market appropriately.
Some pricing methods MasterStream supports are the following:
- Different pricing for different sales channels and within sales channels (e.g., gold, silver, platinum wholesale price tiers)
- Instant markups and pricing from underlying suppliers that have serviceability and cost dynamically created
- Individual SKU-level markup or pricing rules
- Pricing based upon underlying suppliers’ local access distance to your nearest NNI
- Markups or pricing based upon different tiers of near-net (e.g., very near, near, in region)
- Pricing based upon cross-product bundling
- Tier-based pricing is based upon achieving different quantities
- The ability to price and choose primary and secondary circuits based upon your on-net, off-net, and near-net infrastructures in real-time with markups and pricing
As you can see, pricing depends on a number of factors and being able to have a full scope of what goes into pricing can also help drive sales velocity.
With software that provides dynamic visibility, you have access to information to determine how to choose your connectivity services. Dynamic visibility provides:
- The ability to show the underlying supplier(s) to employees
- The ability to show or hide the underlying supplier(s) to partners
- The ability to disclose rating precisions such as (on-net, off-net, near-net and other descriptions of proximity to the asset)
- The ability to show or hide the cost, markup, or discount from employees and partners
With robust access control settings, you can feel confident that employees and partners are exposed to the data they need but are not able to see the data that is not meant for them.
Expandable Architectural Runway
Your software needs to have a runway that allows it to expand easily so it can handle other business-critical functions beyond serviceability and costing. This flexibility ensures that as you adopt more automation, you aren’t stuck in a framework that cannot automate the next steps in the sales process. These functions should include:
- Automated serviceability for on-net, off-net, and near-net infrastructure
- Automated costing
- Automated markups and pricing
- Proposal automation
- Service order documents automation
- Quoting portals for partner automation
- REST API Quoting capabilities
- Quote-to-order workflow for all internal and external sales channels
We understand that business grows, and MasterStream’s SalesEdge product’s software is here to adjust and help that growth along.
Robust and Reliable Automation with MasterStream
At MasterStream, when we make a promise, we mean it. Perhaps the most important step in your selection is to find a partner with extensive experience in telecom products, processes, and implementation of customized solutions across the full spectrum of the telecom industry—carriers, resellers, and agents!
Our software products allow you to subscribe to the right platform that will automate the portion of your business that needs to be streamlined:
- BandwidthFinder (serviceability)
- CarrierAccess (carrier serviceability & cost automation)
- SalesEdge product (lead to order automation for direct, agent, and wholesale channels)
Choosing MasterStream means you can expand at any time to cover other portions of your business as your needs grow and change.
If you’re evaluating software solutions that tout “automated quoting,” make sure their definition of automated matches ours. That way, you won’t get stuck in a dead-end solution with limited functionality. Request a demo today!