An approval workflow is a formal procedure that outlines your company’s steps to approve anything related to sales. Some examples include invoice approval, discount approval, volume discount approval, loyalty discount approval, and more. Approval requests will go through multiple levels of the company and across different departments.
They will route documents to various parts of the company in order for them to be reviewed. Approval workflows should involve all relevant stakeholders from the marketing team to business owners. Amongst many business process workflows in an organization, the sales approval workflow is one of the most necessary workflows.
Your sales team should focus on closing deals, not filling out forms. They shouldn’t be chasing down people in different departments to get things done. tasks like these are a waste of your employee’s time and can create bottlenecks that hold up the whole company. Creating a structured approval system can fast-track multi-level approvals and help secure time-sensitive sales. Some qualities of a good sales approval process are simple, efficient, and consistent.
Table of Contents
- Types of sales approval workflows
- How to create an efficient sales approval workflow process
Types of sales approval workflows
Sales Approval workflows allow you to assign specific parts of the formal sales approval workflow to different salespeople in your organization. Some examples of tasks that are part of the sales process workflow include getting approval for sales quotes or signing off on proposals.
Discount approval workflows help you keep track of all your deals in one place. Keeping things organized will help your company maximize profits while keeping customers happy. Your process should let you review all of the approval details before sending them out to clients. The workflow will help streamline sales processes and improve employee productivity.
Lead Management Workflow to Manage the Leads Efficiently
Lead management workflows are essential to any sales organization. They generate new potential customers and help identify which leads are most likely to close. An effective lead management workflow will include data mining capabilities that capitalize on the latest market trends and research. Your workflow should help your sales team manage leads by separating them into different categories. It should also help you prioritize certain leads over others based on background information and historical data.
Creating custom sales offers to high-value leads can be the difference maker in securing big deals. Custom sales offers will boost customer loyalty and conversion rates by making clients feel good about their purchases. Offering a custom solution to clients shows them that your company values their business and is willing to put in the time and effort to get a deal done.
Sales Quotation Workflow To Close Leads Quickly
A sales quote workflow could save you money and increase profits by helping convert leads into profits, without underpricing your products or services. Your sales team should be able to easily enter data in and quickly get the quote to the customer without having to send an email or call anyone back. A good sales quote workflow will help you avoid losing deals to competitors, many customers will go with the most responsive company.
Creating standardized forms allows you to control what types of information will be collected by using custom fields with validation rules, and they ensure that everything is in an easy-to-process format. A form builder will help you have customized automation without all of the special technical experience that making something from scratch would take. Sales approval workflow software like Jetdocs helps salespeople manage quotes and close deals faster. Getting deals done fast by making the approval process more efficient will increase revenue and expand your customer base.
Sales Invoice Workflow to Bill the Closed Sales
Sales invoices should always be sent in a timely manner. They should also clearly state when the payment or payments are due. A clear due date ensures that your company gets paid on time. Invoices should not have any additional surprise charges that your customer does not know about. Your customer should know approximately how much an invoice will be for before they are billed. Discounts and additional fees like interest should be clearly outlined in an invoice as well. This can be controlled by improving your sales quotation workflow to provide clear pricing to your customers.
Calculations like sums and additional fees should be calculated with 100% accuracy. Tax rates should match local regulations for the transaction. They should also be in an appropriate currency. If you make a mistake once, your customers will not be able to trust you in the future. Companies that process dozens of invoices a day are bound to make a mistake if done manually. Computers can calculate invoices much faster and with complete precision.
Sales invoices are confidential documents, it is important that they are only sent to the right person. Even at the correct company, your customer may prefer that only a specific person or team can access invoices. If this is unclear, it is best to reach out to the customer before sending anything. The invoice should include the correct name, with the correct spelling. This lets your customers know that you respect and value them as a client.
Errors with invoices may lead to missed income or unhappy customers. A sales invoice workflow will help your team avoid missing any steps when billing your customers. Automated workflows can immediately send invoices without your team having to send them out manually. Invoice management is an essential part of any company’s operations.
Sales Discount Approval Workflow to Efficiently Approve Discounts
Sales discounts are a great way to attract new customers, quickly boost sales numbers, and boost your company’s reputation. It is also a great way to clear out excess inventory while increasing the loyalty of your existing customers. Some examples of sales discount strategies include seasonal discounts, referral programs, or demographic-based discounts such as one targeted at students, military, or first responders (sheerid.com).
Sales discounts can sometimes take weeks or months to approve. This process is often overcomplicated and streamlining it can prove to be very beneficial. A good sales discount approval workflow will help ensure that the customer’s needs are satisfied without any delays. Delaying sales discounts may lead to losing profits if deals fall through. Establishing a clear multi-step approval process for discounts will prevent approvals from being held back and get your deals closed.
Salespeople should be able to access all the information they need about the status of an order directly from the CRM (customer relationship management) software. Creating an internal approval process in Jetdocs will ensure that all sales opportunities receive the attention that they require.
How to create an efficient sales approval workflow process
A sales approval workflow process must be accurate and efficient in order for your company to receive the most benefits possible from it. A good workflow will not only make your documents easier to create and use but will also improve their quality. Customers hate wasting time waiting for approvals on your end; an efficient approval process helps speed things up.
1. Create the sales documents
Sales documents guide your employees through the sales process and showcase your products and services to potential customers. Types of sales documents include business proposals, case studies, sales decks, and contracts (betterproposals.io). Professional sales documents will give your clients a great first impression that will make them look forward to working with your company.
Using pre-built templates is a great way to streamline your sales process and save valuable time. Sales approval workflow templates allow sales managers to approve requests with speed and efficiency. Standardized templates will help track all of the steps throughout your company’s sales pipeline.
2. Establish responsibilities for everyone
Establishing clear roles and responsibilities will help keep everyone focused on achieving your company’s shared goals. This will ensure that all relevant stakeholders fully understand what their role is in the approval process, Making sure that the right people are involved in the decision-making process will help everything run smoothly. Poorly judged approvals or rejections can cost your company a lot of money.
When each role is assigned to a specific person in your organization, accountability and motivation are increased. These roles must be configured before a process is put into place; it is impossible to connect the dots together when your team does not who should be doing what. Once your team members are assigned their responsibilities, they can decide how they want to approach their tasks in order to conform to workflow timelines.
3. Set permissions, Get the Hierarchy Right
Set permissions allow you to define which roles will have editing access to specific files. Your company may decide that sales managers have special rights such as overriding parts of the approval process in time-sensitive situations. There may be times when securing a deal is more important than following processes to a tee. Making executive decisions comes with a level of responsibility regarding any issues that stem from the overridden process. It is important to only give these permissions to employees you highly trust. Misusing the override feature can lead to big issues for your company. Users can be assigned different levels of authority based on their role.
4. Create a timeline & Keep it Realistic
A set timeline for your sales approval workflows can help keep things on track at your company. Creating a reasonable timeline can be done by observing the workflow being completed in an efficient manner and basing your expectations on that. A good starting point is to first understand the scope of the project and break it up into milestones. Each milestone will have a list of tasks that must be completed in order to reach the milestone. Each task should have its own estimated duration. These tasks should then be assigned to your team in an equal manner so that no one is overworked while others wait around. This should all be mapped out using a timeline software so that your whole team knows what’s going on.
Just like setting goals and clear expectations, a timeline will motivate your team to get things done in an efficient manner. When creating timelines for workflows, always set reasonable expectations for your team. While you want your team to always do their best, a timeline should not make them feel like are always behind.
5. Set up proper alerts and notifications
Setting up automated alerts and notifications across all channels ensures that you and your team do not miss any important information. Alerts are only sent to the appropriate person based on factors like the document type or the stage of the sales process that it is in. Keeping alerts to only relevant employees means your team’s productivity is less likely to be impeded and that employees who do receive alerts are more likely to take action in a timely manner.
Automating an approval email template allows you to send emails without manually logging in to Salesforce each time. As long as your entry criteria have been set up correctly, your approval process should be good to go.
When your team creates a new approval process, it is important to put it through thorough testing before going live with it. If your company does not have a dedicated approval manager, you are likely missing out on opportunities to improve your sales process. An approval manager can use approval management software which will help you keep track of all of your client’s information, including details about approvals.
Creating a sales approval workflow will help you get the most out of your leads. Workflows can create documentation for you based on actual approval status. Jetdocs allows you to create a sales approval workflow right in Slack or Microsoft Teams. You can use the workflow rules to automate these approval tasks, freeing up your employee’s time while increasing workflow consistency.