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Brad Furie, iQuoteXpress

How to reduce RFP response times in D365

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With RFP responses, the thinking is the early bird gets the worm… but being early isn't a guarantee. Sometimes, focusing purely on a speedy RFP response results in a sloppy RFP response, and the early bird leaves empty-handed (or is that empty-winged?).

Getting a winning pitch in front of a client requires speed, professionalism, and the right tools.

If you’re using D365 Sales (or PSA or Field Service or any of the CE/CRM solutions) with a single sign-on CPQ solution, you have every tool you need to get a professional RFP response out quickly, and to get the sale. 

Here are a few best practices and tactics you can use to reduce RFP response times without sacrificing RFP response quality.

- Carefully review the RFP’s requirements: nothing worse than jumping at an RFP that doesn’t 1) fit what you do or 2) line up with your available resources and / or schedule.

- We already said the early bird gets the worm? Well, once your RFP response is sent, it’s the squeaky wheel that gets the grease. We’re talking follow-up, and lots of it.

And while D365 has some great tools for tracking every step that turns a prospect into an opportunity, it’s a little short on tracking once a quote is sent. Let CPQ take over at this point, and to track every interaction and iteration that moves a quote from sent to signed, and ensure you're equipped to engage quickly if necessary.

- Learn from your wins AND your losses. Use every bit of BI you gather during the closing process (on proposal formatting, product/pricing configurations, cadence of follow-up, etc.) and use it to optimize both your individual quotes and your overall sales proposal process.

- Use a single sign-on solution: D365 + CPQ? Good. Dynamics with single sign-on CPQ? GREAT. Not only does this make it easier for reps to access their quotes right out of their CRM system, it can even increase CRM adoption.

Why? Because even though every rep will tell you they're “in CRM all day, every day,” that’s not always the case. But you may rest assured that they're checking on every quote they have out there — all day, every day. And with a seamless integration of Dynamics and CPQ, the only way to access their quotes is via CRM.

- Use a proven solution: humbly put (ok, PROUDLY), I believe iQuoteXpress is the ideal CPQ solution to extend your D365 solution. It's a single sign-on solution, completely supported from implementation through everyday use.

And it works wonders: one of many customer successes enjoyed when a customer added our CPQ to their CRM included:

  • Quote creation time reduced by more than 50%
  • Errors in quotes plummeted by 95 %
  • Sales rep onboarding time reduced by 50%

(Re: that last point on onboarding — the customer shared with us that, by dropping reps into the CPQ system, rookie reps could make a professional quote in minutes that was as strong as any quote created by their veteran reps.)

Looking to improve RFP responses? Contact us to get started.

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