Digital transformation is everywhere in the modern age of business.
Despite the possibilities, we’ve seen high-profile digital transformation efforts fail time and time again. Therefore the term ‘digital transformation’ can often be met with apprehension when enterprises begin the process.
At Nintex, we believe digital transformation is a destination, not a never-ending journey. By investing in an Intelligent Process Automation (IPA) portfolio, your enterprise will be well-equipped to digitally transform itself and stay ahead of the competition.
In this post, we will look at a real-world example of how to take full advantage of IPA solutions, which combine AI capabilities like machine learning and natural language processing with workflow automation, forms, and document generation technologies to automate, orchestrate, and optimize almost every business process. We’ll dive deeper into the role IPA can play in bringing new levels of intelligence to a sales process – specifically contract lifecycle management (CLM).
Automate the Sales-to-Cash Process
Sales processes are collaborative in their very nature. Multiple interactions between people need to take place to get a deal from opportunity to close: from the prospect/customer to the salesperson, to the finance and legal teams, and more. Every step along the way, there’s a chance that a manual process will delay ‘the close,’ a human error will risk compliance, or a missed opportunity will arise.
What becomes clear is that leveraging machine intelligence within quoting and contracting processes allows your sales team to save valuable time and focus more on selling, rather than pushing paperwork or chasing down signatures.
There is an opportunity for automation in every step of a sales process. Below we look at how each step can be streamlined and improved using IPA:
Intelligent Contract Lifecycle Management Scenario
The key to automating opportunity management is to put your CRM data to work. A salesperson can reduce his or her manual administrative tasks by utilizing workflows that monitor and manage leads and contacts within a CRM system, bypass an email inbox by auto-assigning tasks, and triggering actions, alerts and follow-ups.
2. Auto-Generate Sales Proposals
Quoting is a key part of the sales cycle, and for many sales representatives, preparing a sales quote can involve dealing with mass amounts of unstructured data that is passed around internally before going to a prospect or customer. With IPA, the sales team can auto-generate branded sales proposals that include all of the required documentation, legal terms and conditions, product information and cover letters. The seller can also regulate and control access of these quotes to and from CRM systems, cloud data repositories and EDM systems – ensuring that the right people have access to the right information.
3. Intelligently Route, Approve, and Archive Contracts
Once a lead is captured and the quote is approved, a sales contract must be generated, approved, signed by the customer, and archived into the company’s system of record. With intelligent technologies, it is possible to automatically route, approve, and archive a contract in the fewest number of steps possible, and with the lowest potential for human error.
Once a salesperson signs off on an auto-generated sales contract, intelligent routing actions can utilize machine learning to automatically route a contract to the member of the legal department most likely to respond and review in the shortest time — all based on the contract type, dollar value, time, and day of the week.
Upon receipt of the document, legal will notice that natural language processing (NLP) technologies have already highlighted the changes to the agreement deemed pertinent for review and approval – like a change in pricing or contract length. This accelerates the legal review and approval and automatically returns the approved contract.
When the sale is complete and the contract is signed, NLP can analyze the metadata and text on the document to determine the type of file and where to archive it in the appropriate location in Box or other content repositories.
This intelligent CLM process is one example of the power of adding intelligence to your automated processes to help streamline work and positively impact the bottom line of your enterprise.