Get better results from your CLM initiatives using finance automation

Eren Koont
by Eren Koont LinkedIn
Oct 19, 2020 11:00:00 AM

While it may have taken grand ideas and more than a little ingenuity to build some of today’s most well-known companies (e.g., Amazon, Apple, Disney, Google, HP and Microsoft started in their founders’ garages), the long-term success of businesses these days is built on the backs of customer relationships.

CLM — a relatively simple concept with not-so-simple execution

At its heart, long-term business success comes down to better customer lifecycle management (CLM). The theory goes that if you invest time and energy into building strong and mutually beneficial relationships with your customers over their lifecycle, and you’re more likely to achieve greater long-term success.

When you focus on CLM, you’re able to maximize revenue and margin at every step along the customer journey, from acquisition to upsell/cross-sell, to loyalty and retention, expansion of services, to debt management, and beyond.

Now, while this sounds fairly straightforward in principle, it’s no simple process to execute. That’s why more companies of all sizes and types are turning to third-party SaaS providers to automate various parts of their CLM initiatives, including the all-important finance function. Some initiatives include automating recurring billing, creating unique dunning process for different types of relationships, and automating as much of the renewal process as possible.

An investment in finance automation pays dividends in customer happiness

We likely don’t have to tell you all the steps involved in reconciling your billing and revenue recognition every month. Needless to say, most organizations use some kind of accounting software to manage their financial processes; yet, the majority of “out of the box” solutions require manual workarounds to truly match the many moving (and changing!) parts of a customer’s lifecycle.

Here’s where SaaS automation comes in. Finance automation, like the technology built into Ordway’s next-gen billing and revenue automation platform, facilitates the sales-to-finance workflow, integrating with the market’s most popular marketing, sales and finance engines (including Salesforce CRM, HubSpot, and QuickBooks) to manage multi-faceted contracts, invoicing and payment schedules, dunning, auditing and reporting, along with other key steps taken by the finance function.

In streamlining some of the moving parts of the finance function, automation has the potential to eliminate hundreds of hours of manual workarounds that can seriously bog down finance teams at the end of each month and delay making decisions about the future of the business. And when sales and finance eliminate unforced errors on invoices, or are early to start renewal conversations, the organization is freed up to focus the future of the business and not obsess about the past. Benefits filter through to customers, who can expect more streamlined delivery of service, with less potential for human error that can come with too many manual workarounds in the system.

Fullstack Academy uses Ordway billing and revenue automation platform to provide “wow” moments across the customer lifecycle

As top-ranked coding and cybersecurity bootcamp Fullstack Academycontinued to grow in leaps and bounds, their leadership recognized that if they weren’t careful, such expansion could have adverse effects on their bread-and-butter customers. They set upon a key consideration that, if they got right, could prove to be an important differentiator and value proposition for their business: Using automation technology to scale the finance function in order to empower Fullstack’s growth and build better working relationships with their students and partners.

Fullstack-Academy-homepage

Using Ordway’s billing and revenue recognition platform, Fullstack Academy is transforming their complicated student billing model into a flexible process that’s capable of scaling with their growing business—all while avoiding the cost and complexity of adding headcount.

“Since education is one of the largest financial investments a person makes, it’s my goal that we deliver fast and accurate information to make this step in the student journey as seamless as possible.... Our growth demands that we do things differently, and… I’m excited to transform Fullstack’s finance function with Ordway to better serve our students and other stakeholders.”
— Nelis Parts, VP of Finance, Fullstack Academy of Code

Ordway’s automation technology delivers core improvements to billing and revenue processes throughout the customer lifecycle, including: 

  • Achieving accurate revenue schedules that meet Fullstack’s unique business model and also adhere to ASC 606/IFRS 15 revenue recognition standards
  • Automating accurate invoicing at scale, so Fullstack’s lean finance team can work smarter, not harder. 
  • Managing a 360-degree view of student contracts, which allows the team to make granular changes and provide fast and accurate information to any student quickly and efficiently.
  • Easy integration, with robust customization and API routes that make it possible to add new products and courses without disturbing the processes in their existing systems.
  • Straightforward and affordable pricing, with the best value available on the market today.

Learn more about why Fullstack Academy chose Ordway’s platform to deliver more “wow” moments to students here.

Ultimately, a modern finance tech stack means Fullstack Academy can manage their CLM initiatives knowing payment friction is reduced so they can focus on their core value proposition to students.

If you’re serious about growing your business, you can’t afford to overlook the integral role of seamless billing in your customers' satisfaction which results in both immediate revenue and increased life-time value (LTV).

Consider enlisting finance automation technology, like the Ordway billing and revenue automation platform to build deeper and more profitable relationships with your customers over the long haul.

Let’s talk about how our customers are facilitating improved customer relationships! Contact us today.

Topics: billing, recurring revenue, automation, churn, revenue recognition

 

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