Understanding how to wrap up the year with great success rather than flying by at the seat of your pants is top of mind as we’ve rounded the corner into Q4. For many, the latter half of 2022 looked more like 2020 than the excitement (or at least relief) seen in 2021. Belts have been tightened, changes have been made, and everyone is hoping for the best while we’re still putting plans in place for less desirable scenarios.
It’s been a challenging few months to say the least.
In this roundtable about making RevOps a strong contributor towards organizational success in 2023, experts share their insights on trends, identify big wins, flexibility, and ways CPQ can ultimately allow your organization to flourish.
Before we dive in, let’s give a major shoutout to our sponsor and RevOps Co-op partner, DealHub. DealHub is a sales-friendly CPQ solution that consolidates the quote and contract tasks into one tool. Sales people find it intuitive and it takes just a few weeks to implement, rather than months.
We’re excited to have Saul Garcia, VP of Revenue Operations at Health Recovery Solutions; Bruce Harris, Director of Finance Applications at Torchy’s Tacos; and Eyal Orgil, CEO and Co-founder of DealhHub on the panel. Eyal candidly agrees that 2022 felt like déjà vu from 2020.
“Things were changing, all of a sudden, very quickly from the plans that we had for the rest of the year and things were taking a twist,” he says. “We’ve seen a little more belt tightening. We’ve seen some people talk about ‘let’s hold off a little bit on some of our projects’.”
Many organizations are focused on creating efficiencies in their sales teams, within their tech stack, and throughout their sales process. Through platforms such as DealHub, organizations are now able to focus on areas such as this and contract management.
“People are still looking at the right solutions to put the right priorities on the right solutions,” he says. “Going into 2023, people are still a little uncertain.”
Bruce Harris, Director of Finance Applications at Torchy’s Tacos says it was an eye-opener for a lot of businesses.
“People started realizing business applications run their whole company,” he says. “I don’t know why it took so long.”
The need for a dedicated business applications person suddenly became clear.
“It’s all about revenue and revenue velocity,” he says. “If you don’t have that, you’re not going to survive.”
In healthcare, Saul Garcia, VP of Revenue Operations at Health Recovery Solutions says the industry evolved. COVID pushed their patient monitoring solutions into the forefront across the country, but 2022 saw more of a return to normal.
“The industry as a whole has changed where industries are a bit more open to RPM [remote patient monitoring] and telehealth—we certainly expect some amount of normality,” he says. “Not all the way in terms of how it was in 2019 [though].”
“Even as a CPQ tool, we have to make sure we’re using it right; we’re providing the right approval processes,” says Eyal. “Not slowing them down as we grow, [rather] we’re changing it as we’re growing.”
Other trends he’s seeing is the increased focus on approval workflows and a constant focus on creating more efficient processes. While managers providing deal approvals is just a fragment of their typical workflows, DealHub helps them work collaboratively to discuss the process most intelligently.
Saul admitted that planning for 2023 is what worries him and keeps him up at night. But, in truth, he too sees efficiency as the key.
“It’s being realistic about our 2023 plans being data-driven, but not data-reliant,” he says. “All the data in the world in 2019 would not have predicted what happened in 2020. There’s always going to be surprises.”
While it’s safe to say his business is going to be heavily data-driven, taking failures and focusing on efficiencies is also taken into account while planning.
Improving performance and efficiencies both up and down market is a potential big win in 2023 for Saul.
“We started a mid-market team this year,” he says. “And while we’ve seen some success, I don’t think we’ve seen the success across the entire team”
He’d like to see a narrower net, a quicker sales cycle, and gain big deals that build success for the rest of the team.
Bruce deals with the business of tacos, and while there may not seem to be much cross-over from Saul, they both deal with increases to costs.
“We’ve had to do price increases,” Bruce says. “You don’t want to drive away too many customers. It’s all about efficiency, predictability, and consistency.”
He explains creating a feedback loop to constantly fine tune processes will allow for better revenue captures. For this, and a variety of other reasons, he feels business applications belong in the financial side of the business.
“Within that team, you don’t need to hire a technical team, but you need people who know processes,” he says. “Everything has that financial impact.”
Going in as a team-of-one is familiar territory for Saul. He’s done it three times now. He looks at strengths and weaknesses in himself, and hires from there based on the organization’s needs.
“CPQ has really helped us and enabled us to be a lot more efficient,” he says. “The guardrails it puts in has really helped us, but at the same time, we might need someone to help review some of this stuff before things close, so that’s potentially something we’re looking at.”
This is where DealHub comes in. As a Salesforce shop and CPQ business, scaling up comes relatively easily in-house.
“As the team grows, we do have to keep pace with a lot of different changes that are happening,” Eyal says.
This includes looking at both the RevOps team and the complementing teams such as customer success, operations, and marketing when it comes to growth.
Having implemented multiple CPQ systems, Bruce feels they first and foremost needed to be like Dealhub, developed with guided quoting as its foundation.
“[With] a sales rep trying to remember even 500 products, there’s an infinite number of combinations,” he says. “It was taking months upon months to ramp them up to try and learn the product mix. So, you need a consistent process which is guided quoting.”
The focus can be on selling with a playbook, but with the right products at the right prices.
“You have consistent, rapid, predictable results,” he explains. “They could get that quote out in just a matter of minutes.”
In addition to the playbook, sales reps are able to access the buyer-facing micro site that delivers the quote, relative content with videos, case studies, and more. With the right CPQ tool, sales reps can rely on the playbook and recommendations within the system to get things right—and quickly.
“When you have the logic built into the CPQ that just says ‘this product goes with this product, here’s the other options, here’s the upsell options that you can go in and provide as well,’ it just speeds it up for the salesperson,” says Eyal. “They can get the right quote out. They can do it all themselves.”
The proposal becomes stronger because the CPQ knows who the potential customer is and can drive the right content. It makes the proposal look sharp, the sales person look efficient, and the company ultimately look great.
“You’re putting the right information there, in front of the customer,” he says.
Plus, because of the speed of business, the system needs to be able to adapt very quickly without disruption.
“It might be a ten-minute change that makes your solution so much better by going in there and adjusting it to the way that the salespeople are working,” he says.
One of the benefits of a CPQ solution Bruce already hinted at was the ability to create a product catalog of the right size, and a pricing engine that works 100% of the time.
“Having a very powerful pricing engine allows you to price to perfection,” he says. “I can’t see any reason that you would not have a quoting tool.”
It also helps with go-to-market strategies, Saul says.
“I’ve seen companies have a go-to-market strategy that they thought they were actually going to market with, but then the reality was that things were being priced differently,” he says. “There’s inconsistent pricing, inconsistent packaging, and people actually had no idea.”
Saul is also aware that RevOps doesn’t often get the budget it deserves.
“It’s always a constant battle,” he says. “Over the past two years, teams have reduced, but efficiency had to stay at the same amount, or status quo, or increasing. We’ve actually seen a little bit more of an investment in Revenue Operations.”
His plan is to bring in larger tools, like a customer success tool, for 2023 while also integrating other tools into the tech stack.
At DealHub, Eyal will see more investment in people, but also on the tools that support them.
“We’re being smart about it, looking at what the tools are going to help,” he says. “Also, work with experts that understand those tools.”
“When it comes to planning for 2023, I would question and challenge everything,” Saul says. “But don’t try to be perfect.”
His other piece of advice is to build and improve the documentation that helps the team in terms of workflows and other processes.
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