Insanity: “doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”
It can take time and resource to create accurate quotes for customized products. If the organization lacks the time and/or resources with detailed product knowledge, it is very tempting to take risks to try to quickly produce a good quotation. However, this approach risks can lead to misunderstandings between the customer and your employees in sales and engineering when the quoted solutions sometimes cannot be manufactured or options or prices have changed. In some cases, the costs of supplying the solution exceed the estimate and will not yield any profit (or worse). So stop doing that over and over again…
Create a winning quotations quickly
When it comes to selling customer-specific products and solutions, there are many things to take into account. One or more quotations have to be made for the customer which he will use to base a purchase decision on. Drawing up a complete and error-free quotation places high demands on your organization. A great deal of knowledge is needed to interpret all the customer’s requirements, to look for the right solution and to calculate or configure the correct selling price, cost price and specifications. It is precisely this knowledge and experience that is so scarce. Only a few people in your organization will have it. It is risky to rely on a few individuals for critical business information that is often not documented, but it is also inconvenient; because it means that you cannot respond to prospect enquiries as quickly as the customer would like.
Modify your winning quotation quickly and reliably
When, after a while, your customer responds to your proposal with some remarks, you want to respond quickly with an altered version. It is very tempting to make some changes in the Word document of the proposal and send it to the customer. In many cases, this is where the costly mistakes are made. Since the original proposal was created, products may have changed, new options may have been introduced, new rules may have been drawn up, and prices may have changed. The changes the customer requested may also impact other parts of your proposal and, therefore, the altered proposal must be thoroughly checked.