Behind SaaS doors
Revenue Accountant: “This data is a mess, why didn’t Rev Ops review this?!”
Rev Ops: “Lets create 50 booking rules so the data is better”
Sales: “We can’t sell services, it’s too complicated!”
Services: “Our attach is terrible, sales aren’t bringing us into the deals!”
Executives: “Why did our churn rate skyrocket?!”
I’ve worked with many finance teams who spend 80% of their manual reconciliation time on the 20% of PS revenue, complaining every month that the data is a mess. I’ve also worked with RevOps teams who create convoluted bookings policies to make sure sales doesn’t mess up quoting PS so that it “works” for the downstream systems. Thus begins the circle of data not working for anyone.
Streamlining the sales processes while ensuring financial compliance and appropriate service attach is not an easy problem to tackle…
Starting with the quoting process is key to getting streamlined data from quote to cash for PS to create a great experience for sales all the way to your finance teams. No CPQ is designed specifically for this purpose that also caters to the uniqueness of professional services products.
The accounting complexity of having professional services within a SaaS company is only complicating the quoting process.
- What can be sold on an order form?
- What needs an SOW?
- How much can we give away for free?
- What if we use a reseller?
These financial implications are too much for a seller to deal with when trying to close a deal. This makes for a very painful Quote to Cash process for everyone – Sales, Professional Services, Billing, Accounting, and A/R.
The ideal quote to cash process has data flowing perfectly from the sales process to FP&A for forecasting. Most companies think this starts with financial data and not sales data, starting at the booking or even AR step above. This is far too late! By then your data (products, pricing, billing, discounts) is a mess and will need to undergo transformation to make it work for ERP and other systems, especially for professional services.
Finance teams love WorkRails because it:
- Structures PS data: ERP and financial systems can easily receive data without manual intervention
- Connects paper to systems: No more reading SOWs and comparing sales orders
- Reduces Reviews: Revenue Accounting teams only have to review non-standard contracts, confident that the field teams can’t go off script with terms that impact accounting
- Downstream financial systems struggle to consume this data for revenue and billing
- Accounting and billing teams spend a disproportionate amount of time manually reconciling PS data because of upstream architecture
Guest Blog by Amber Milks. Amber has worked at SaaS companies for over 10 years in Professional Services, including DocuSign, Okta, and Veeva. She now owns Loop Consulting, helping individuals and small businesses scale their operations.