Many companies are now implementing what is known as a deals desk function in an effort to identify opportunities based on their pay off to the organization, and then define workflows based on the amount of manual intervention required – be it high-touch, low-touch, or no touch. That’s the word from PricewaterhouseCoopers (News - Alert), which just issued a report called “Pricing & Profitability: Deals Desk – A key business enabler to meet customer demands” on the topic.
“Deals desks play a critical role in large, strategic opportunities that are typically complex and high-value,” according to the firm. “With careful consideration to the design and implementation of a deals desk function and supporting capabilities including automated workflows, companies can improve profitability, drive sales efficiencies, strengthen SOX controls, and enable clear visibility into current and future business performance.”
For high-touch opportunities, deal desks act as a key enabler of deal formation and execution; increase sales efficiency and effectiveness; and improve business visibility and global consistency.
“In addition,” PricewaterhouseCoopers writes, “deal desks serve as an organizational hub during deal management, ensuring involvement and buy-in from the right stakeholder groups at the right time.”
The firm explains that deals desks provide price recommendations; assist with non-standard deal requests; and can help structure complex deals involving, for example, solutions based on bundles of products and services across different business units.
Deal desks also can act as important tools to inform various stakeholders within an organization about what is and is not working in various regions, win/loss analysis, and other key trends and insights. They also can play an important role in the closed-feedback loop of pricing management, providing analytics to inform pricing strategy and highlighting pricing deviations, or recurrent non-standard exception requests, according to PricewaterhouseCoopers.