Established in 1958, Manitou Group, headquartered in France, makes highly customizable equipment for the construction, agriculture, and industrial markets. Their equipment list includes but is not limited to, telehandlers, aerial work platforms, articulated loaders, mast forklifts, skid and track loaders, backhoe loaders, and warehousing equipment.
Through its two brands, MANITOU and GEHL, Manitou Group has differentiated itself in the equipment manufacturing industry by continuously innovating product functions and designs to provide buyers the special features they need to complete their work efficiently.
Manitou Group has been a PROS partner for more than 10 years, helping to simplify the complexity in heavy equipment configuration. Technical users and sales administration have been using PROS pricing and quoting tools to configure customer orders.
As Manitou Group expanded their product list and extended sales across the world (80% of sales outside of France), their system for configuration and pricing became increasingly difficult to navigate and maintain. Manitou wanted to increase sales efficiency – and, in turn, revenues – by expanding the use of PROS Smart CPQ to their sales agents.
The Problem with Analog Ordering Systems
Before PROS, Manitou Group sales agents were using a bulky paper catalog to communicate options to customers and place orders. Reps placed orders or gave information verbally or by email. These non-digital processes introduced a multitude of problems as the company grew. First, catalogs were only sent periodically, but product listings were updated throughout the year. The paper catalog contained quotes from the time of publishing and did not have real-time prices to give customers accurate quotes.
Product listing updates often did not make it to sales before the next catalog was published, leaving them in the dark about changes in pricing, options, and upsells, resulting in longer order times. Extra time was spent waiting for communication between sales and engineering, and the out-of-date catalog caused customers to miss out on new offers that could be beneficial to them. The sheer size of the product catalog and complexity of requests also made it easy for salespeople to make errors in orders sent to manufacturing, further delaying the sales process. Lastly, the paper catalog and manual ordering process provided little visibility into the dealers’ pipeline, meaning that Manitou Group was missing the majority of its customer data.
How PROS Lent an Additional Hand
Manitou Group already had an existing relationship with PROS and they were confident that the next step was to deploy PROS Smart CPQ to all of their sales, including Manitou Group salespeople and dealers of MANITOU and GEHL products. The company knew the PROS Smart CPQ platform would reduce the time it took for customers to place orders and receive equipment, and make it easier for salespeople to upsell, work between Manitou Group and customers, and ultimately create more revenue.
PROS Smart CPQ Implementation
The full implementation was completed using a multiphase, multistep project approach. The process started in the USA and Europe, with expansion later to parts of Africa, South America, and Asia.
The implementation process was complicated in the beginning due to Manitou’s product complexity , but today a deployment of PROS Smart CPQ takes less than a week. Manitou has implemented PROS Smart CPQ across 50 countries and continues to add regions as new dealers come online.
How Manitou Gained from Its PROS Smart CPQ Expansion
The implementation of PROS Smart CPQ as a common selling and ordering solution for sales teams and dealers produced many concrete results. First, PROS significantly simplified and sped up the sales process. Now, salespeople can sit with customers and configure Manitou Group’s 400 product selections in an online portal instead of thumbing through a bulky catalog that might not be up to date. With the help of PROS, Manitou Group reduced the average time to configure and order placement from 30 days to a couple of hours. More than 95% of orders are now entered through the online dealer portal, embedding PROS Smart CPQ, and more than 60% are directly submitted by the dealers themselves.
“With PROS, dealers can order directly from an electronic catalog to configure and place orders, ensuring a real-time sales experience and complete order accuracy. Our sales teams are now guided to products that customers need, with precise configurations, pricing, and quotes. We appreciate PROS ongoing partnership and commitment to helping us deliver a world-class customer experience,” said Randy Carey, Manitou Group Data Experience Director.
Today, Manitou Group can distribute its sales catalog to all channels consistently and in real time and has increased the average revenue of each order with the adjustment of the preconfigured models. The change has reduced sales costs and had a direct positive impact on Manitou’s revenues and margins. In 2022:
- Manitou delivered over 40,000 orders using PROS.
- Over 600 dealers in 50 countries were onboarded to PROS Smart CPQ.
- PROS helped Manitou increase sales by 26% YoY.
What’s more, the company has been able to navigate economic pressures with success. With PROS Smart CPQ, Manitou can quickly modify prices in real time to avoid margin hits.
Over the 2021-2022 period when inflation was surging, Manitou was able to revise their selling price to limit the margin squeeze due to the significant increase in production and delivery costs. This was no easy task because they needed to consider the actual and future evolution of inflation while maintaining a coherent market positioning for each of their products. PROS Smart CPQ enabled them to respond quickly and reliability, rolling out price updates across their sales networks in a single day.
Going forward, Manitou Group will allow its dealers to purchase services such as extended warranties over the web. In addition, Manitou Group projects an additional 5% in revenue as they continue to bring added value services onto the PROS Smart CPQ platform.
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