The world of CRM just got more interesting. Apttus, one of the leading if not the leading “quote-to-cash” application on Salesforce, today has announced the Apttus Intelligent Cloud that will bring its functionality to Microsoft Dynamics CRM, the second most popular customer relationship management platform. B2B users of Microsoft Dynamics will now be able to utilize Apttus solutions including Configure Price Quote, Contract Lifecycle Management, Revenue Management and others.
“Our customers are leaders in their respective markets and require enterprise-level quote-to-cash applications,” said Jujhar Singh, general manager, Microsoft Dynamics CRM. “We are delighted to introduce them to Apttus’ Intelligent Cloud, which adds value to their existing investment in Dynamics CRM. Our customers can benefit from Apttus’ Configure Price Quote, Contact Management and Revenue Management solutions.
$41 billion market opportunity
According to Gartner, the quote-to-cash market has a $41 billion market potential by 2018. However, perhaps no one is in position to fully exploit it? Such was the question that Apttus faced when assessing its growth potential in 2015. Up to that point, the company had virtually sourced all its revenue as a member of the Salesforce ecosystem. But Salesforce is only 20 percent of that market, Gartner says.
“Are we just a company on one platform or can we go other places?” asked Alex Cohen, director, corporate marketing, Apttus. “We don’ want someone else to usurp the opportunity.”
Phases 1, 2 and 3
Since Apttus started in 2006, the process of automating quote-to-cash functions was simply phase 1 for having an impact on customers, according to Kamal Ahluwalia, chief revenue officer, Apttus. They also need behavioral applications. Applications for impacting the behavior of salespersons are phase 2 of Apttus’ plan for the Intelligent Cloud.
“If we can’t do (behavioral applications) for direct sales, it’s more difficult for partners and e-commerce,” Ahluwalia said.
For example, Apttus will take the best sales proposals, promotions that customers have responded to the most and commission plans that have motivated salespersons effectively and make them available in the application.
“The top 20 percent of sales brings in the most revenue,” Cohen said. “As a behavioral reinforcement (these best-in-class assets) are available in the Intelligent Cloud to make the bottom 80 percent look (more) like the top 20 percent.”
Phase 3 of the Apttus Intelligent Cloud involves machine learning to bring collective learning back into the application, according to Ahluwalia. For example, the Apttus Intelligent Cloud uses a deep-learning tool that makes dynamic recommendations based on which deals and proposals have been written. It will make upsell and cross-sell recommendations, according to Ahluwalia.
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