Few technology businesses have a designated procurement process, or a process for ordering hardware.
Most companies struggle to streamline their approach. They aren’t using the procurement module in ConnectWise, and they don’t know where to start.
We’re here to help. This post will outline how implementing a procurement process can help growing businesses strengthen their invoice efficiency.
Why Scaling Businesses Struggle Without a Procurement Process
Companies can’t grow quickly in chaos. With that, there needs to be a systemized process every day for every type of quote that includes hardware.
Why is this? If IT businesses don’t have a process for ordering hardware, they simply cannot scale. This is because they’ll have a tough time staying organized as they gain more clients and create more sales orders.
A procurement process however, keeps everything in check. It prevents items from being ordered twice, for instance—or from not being ordered at all. Other benefits include increased cost transparency, and making sure shipments are going to the right place.
Ultimately, IT businesses need to develop a powerful procurement process to scale. This will help them:
1. Make sure the client is billed accurately and on time.
2. Create a closed loop to ensure efficiency.
3. Boost accountability.
How can you create and implement a surefire procurement process? The next section of this post will explore exactly that.
How to Implement a Procurement Process
So you’re selling hardware to a client—that’s excellent news!
Your procurement process is still essential, though. It should involve building a quote, converting the quote into an opportunity, and then converting that opportunity into a sales order.
You might choose to create a status that says “Payment Required.” Accounting would then receive an email to invoice the client, collect the payment, and then notify the procurement team they can proceed with the purchase order.
Simple, right? You can add notes or attachments—including receipts—as needed to the sales order.
Another piece of the process is to ensure the accounting team has access to all receipts and copies of the bills. After all, it would be tough to balance the books, and accurately track expenses, without visibility into procurement.
With that, we can’t emphasize enough how important receipts are. Log them. Revisit them. Prioritize them in your procurement process.
This brings us to many best practices you can use.
IT Business Best Practices for Ordering Hardware
We’ve compiled the following list of items to keep in mind while implementing your procurement process:
• Any quoting tool that integrates with ConnectWise is ideal.
If you’re buying stuff for a client—desktops, laptops, servers, or something else—ConnectWise Sell is awesome because it integrates seamlessly. But anything that integrates with ConnectWise will do. This ensures the quote can easily convert into an opportunity, and then (ideally) a sales order.
• It doesn’t matter where in ConnectWise you convert your quote.
Hear us out: If you use the procurement process in ConnectWise, no matter where that quote gets converted, you will still have access to the relevant information. This includes each individual part, the order quantity, and the cost. Basically, you’ll have everything you need to create the purchase order.
• Get at least half of your quote upfront.
The way people do their hardware billing may vary. However, if you can get at least half of your quote upfront, that’s fantastic. (The entire thing is ideal, but 50% is solid.) This will help strengthen your cashflow, while ensuring the client is committed before you move forward with the purchase order.
And there you have it. These are just some ways a procurement process can improve your invoice efficiency while you scale. Regardless of where your IT business is currently, we’d like to reiterate that streamlining your approach to ordering hardware is invaluable.