Our Prior Manual Proposal Process
Not unlike many of our clients, until a few years ago we managed our proposals and contracts manually and was not the most efficient way to keep track of our sales deals won and lost. We would get a client that would contact us and ask us for a proposal for a particular engagement. Though we keep copies of past proposals, it was still like everyone became a little project unto itself.
We would first understand the client’s requirements and what engagement or engagements worked for them. Then we would complete a customized proposal that utilized some semblance of a template but found still that every proposal ended up being very different. We would then go into our CRM and create a deal set at the proposal stage. We would wait a couple of days and then contact the client to determine if they would like to move forward. It the answer was yes, we then would send out a contract and wait for them to sign it and scan it and send it back. Next we would go back to our CRM which is HubSpot and mark the deal as closed, countersign the agreement and scan them back a copy for their files.
The Light Then Went Off
We started working with a client on the west end of the GTA, who was a manufacturing company, and they were looking for a combined configuration, quotation/proposal system. They liked the one they were using, but it did not include a configuration system which was greatly needed to improve their productivity and also help them with inventory management and planning of shipping. It was a business that had outgrown many of their current systems.
As part of this process, I discussed with one of the owners regarding the vendor they had, as I was looking for a proposal software solution at the time. She spent time explaining how they had used the software and sent me to the site for the business. I was thrilled as not only were they a cloud computing solution, but they were also Canadian.
Why We Chose Proposify
We were able to create templates for our proposals and develop content in the content library for all of the standard sections of the proposal including our contract which is added as part of the proposal. The proposals can still be customized with a section for the client's requirements, but the other sections that are standard can be pulled in from their content library and can be created once and be updated in one place. There is also versioning so you can go back and see when you have made changes.
There are quoting capabilities if you are providing prices for products or services and do not need a configuration tool. You can provide the client with multiple options for a client and let them choose the products and/or services they want and have it calculate the price based on their choice for the overall proposal.
It stores basic contact/company information that can then be embedded using custom fields and variables which makes it easy to customize your proposal and contract. You can then choose if you want a client to digitally sign the agreement at the end or have them initial important pages.
Proposify supports adding video content to your proposal if needed as well, though we haven’t used it as of yet.
Once you send the proposal to the client via email, they can then click the link for them to go in and view the document online, or they have the choice to download a PDF. You are sent notification once the proposal is viewed as well as when it is signed digitally. We then countersign and send a PDF version back to the client for their records.
The software is easy to use and understand. You can get up and running in a matter of hours. It has helped us in making our proposals and contracts to look more professional and has saved us an enormous amount of time in following up for those clients who sign off on one document.
Before using Proposify, we had to go in and manually add the deal and close it within our CRM. Since we use HubSpot, which is one of the many integrations Proposify has with third-party applications, this is done for us. Proposify creates a company and contact record and adds the deal to our pipeline in HubSpot. If the deal closes, then it will also close off the deal as well.
We also use QuickBooks Online for our accounting package. You are able to generate invoices within Proposify for QuickBooks.
The support is amazing. I tend to like to use chat support. They are very responsive and get back to you quickly which is important when you are having an issue with a document that is sent to your clients. If they are busy while you are online – it will send an email to their support, and you will receive an answer via email later.
They Are Canadian
We always try to find products and services that exist in Canada first and support our fellow Canadians. Proposify has been around since 2013 but is still small enough that it treats customers with tender loving care. If you are Canadian, keep in mind by using a Canadian company, you are not only getting a tax deduction for using the software but will reduce the amount of HST owed as well by buying Canadian.
RK Fischer & Associates