What To Do After CPQ Implementation

Once you've implemented your solution, these 5 points will help the adoption and longevity of your program.
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Don’t Lose Focus After Your CPQ Software Implementation

It’s easy to feel exhausted after a CPQ software implementation project; you may begin to not remember why you got started in the first place. Implementation expert, Nikhil Karwhal, Group Head of Practice EMEA at 4C, explains this phenomenon:

“You know sometimes you go on a holiday to escape things or clear your mind? Halfway through the holiday, you forget why you started it. You fall into your daily routine, and you forget why you booked that holiday. By the time the holiday comes to an end you realize ‘wait, why did I book this holiday?’”

Don’t forget why you started your CPQ project in the first place. In order for successful adoption, it may take reminders to your team, and yourself, why you started. For example:

  • To decrease manufacturing errors
  • To streamline your sales to manufacturing handoffs
  • To decrease time to value for your customer
  • To increase the efficiency of your quoting and sales processes.

Whatever the reasons are, you need to stay positive. Here are 5 ways to ensure success after you’ve implemented CPQ software at your organization and avoid post-implementation exhaustion.

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1. Establish a day-forward strategy after CPQ implementation

It’s not enough to reach the finish line of implementation. Think beyond initial launch and about what end-users of CPQ software will need to be successful in their roles. To start:

  • Map out a timeline of your CPQ roll-out to your organization.
  • Map your training processes and build content prior to releasing CPQ software.
  • Provide information on any new sales talk tracks, and help your teams understand how to evolve in their role.
  • Plan for any internal and external support roles that will be needed to aid in the use of CPQ.

Preparing your team is essential to maintaining internal buy-in for new processes, and software.

2. Maintain executive buy-in

It’s emphasized that a c-suite champion should be identified long before your project starts. Along with your team, this executive sponsor needs to stay bought into the use and growth of CPQ at your organization post-launch. Make sure that you:

  • Meet regularly with key stakeholders in your program.
  • Provide your c-suite champion with the tools and data they need to prove the value of your CPQ program post-launch.
  • Schedule evaluation sessions to discuss wins and challenges with your c-suite champion.

3. Train your teams

Without proper training, asking your team to adopt the use of CPQ software is a lot to ask of them. Your training shouldn’t begin post-launch but instead, it should be delivered in small chunks throughout your implementation timeline to get current team members involved early and not overload them with too much information.

You’ll also want to establish a training process for onboarding new employees into your CPQ software as well. You may consider:

  • Creating training documentation and handbooks by role
  • Scheduling regular refresher training sessions for all CPQ users
  • Creating a broken-down training timeline for all employees to onboard into CPQ

4. Account for Maintenance Costs and Resources

When creating budgets post-launch of CPQ there may be line items that you need to maintain. Don’t assume that a CPQ tool will be a “set-it-and-forget-it” asset. You may need technical support teams to manage to make modifications to the configurator and maintain the product(s).

Technical support needs for CPQ are both internal and external; you may need to add both support roles depending on the complexity of your products and how often changes are made to them.

5. Measure, and Optimize

Lastly, in order to remember why you started and avoid post-CPQ blues, you’ll want to measure against the goals you set out to accomplish. Whether the goal was to reduce manufacturing delays, or decrease production timelines, or to increase sales, you should think about how you’ll measure against past performance.

You are sure to see the benefits of a successful CPQ software implementation if you stay proactive with preparing and training your team, maintain executive buy-in, and account for maintenance. Ready to implement CPQ at your organization? Read our full implementation guide to understand where to start.

Posted in: CPQ