High levels of responsiveness are essential to the success of any sales-focused business. Data suggests 35-50% of all sales go to the vendor that responds first. However, when sales processes are slow or inaccurate, it can seriously hamper a company’s ability to acquire new customers or upsell to existing ones.

That was the case for one of Africa’s leading systems integrators, sparking a first-of-its-kind implementation project that has achieved outstanding results.

“As a business we needed a radical simplification of our lead-to-cash value stream through a centralised solution for configuring, pricing and quoting, and chose SAP CPQ,” says Julian Liebenberg, Chief of Cloud Platform Solutions at BCX.

BCX is one of Africa’s leading premier ICT solutions and service providers with the technology, capability and skills to deliver end-to-end digital solutions for large and medium enterprises. BCX is a digital transformation partner for enterprises and public sector organisations across various industries and sectors within South Africa, Botswana, Mozambique, Namibia, Tanzania, the UK and Zambia.

The company is headquartered in Centurion and employs more than 2 000 engineers working from multiple locations.

Missed opportunities and inaccuracy

According to Liebenberg, the new flexible quoting tool had to address several challenges.

“Our use of multiple quoting tools across the business led to inconsistent quoting, and sometimes inaccurate billing. A lack of integration and automation also resulted in  missed opportunities and lost customers to due to delays. We implemented SAP CPQ to enable our sales and pre-sales teams to configure and quote complex ICT solutions, with an integration to our CRM system allowing for greater automation in the quote process. We also integrated to our SAP back-end for order processing.”

SAP CPQ is a cloud-based software-as-a-service offering specifically targeted to help sales teams perform complex product configurations and create and manage sales quotations.

The implementation was managed by the BCX SAP Centre of Excellence, with expert guidance from SAP Services. “The SAP Services team assisted with knowledge transfer and skills, enabling our Centre of Excellence to build expertise with the CPQ solution and enabling us to provide the services to other companies in the Southern Africa region,” says Liebenberg .

Unlocking sales success and standardisation

Following the implementation, BCX is enjoying streamlined configuration, quoting and pricing, contributing to increased sales effectiveness and freeing up the sales team from manual processes. In addition, the new solution has improved the quote and order processing turnaround time with automated approvals, leading to increased revenue and a better customer experience.

“We have increased our win-rate across the various business units within BCX and more than halved the time it took us to go from qualified opportunity to solution design, from 52 days to less than 25 days,” says Liebenberg.  “This has helped us improve our customer experience and defend our existing customer base while also unlocking new opportunities for digital marketing and customer engagement.”

In addition, other benefits that have been unlocked since the implementation include:

  • New opportunities for digital marketing and customer engagement
  • Enhanced capabilities to crowdsource services for customers
  • Increased operational efficiency in sales through automation and the shortening of sales cycles
  • The use of AI to guide sales teams in combining products for improved customer solutions
  • Improved configuring, pricing and quoting workflows and the streamlining of the remaining manual processes
  • The elimination of quotation errors
  • Consistent quoting from up-to-date catalogues and pricing information
  • Increased productivity and a lower learning curve for sales teams and technical architects.

“We now have established selling, eligibility and compatibility rules that have enabled a unified quoting process for cross-product portfolio solutions and have achieved sales process harmonisation through gaining a 360-degree view over quotes and commercial subscriptions,” says Liebenberg.  “Overall the project was a resounding success with the added benefit that we can offer the solution to our own customers too.”

Cameron Beveridge, Regional Director for Southern Africa at SAP, adds: “Modern organisations need to be engaged in a process of continuous innovation to drive improvements and efficiency gains across the business. As one of the foremost technology services companies on the African continent, BCX plays a leading role in guiding enterprises in their digital transformation efforts. The success of this latest project bodes well for the region’s prospects, as BCX can transfer their knowledge and expertise to the benefit of other innovative companies.”