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Swift End-to-End Pricing Transformations from Strategy to Implementation

The need to transform global pricing organization into the digital world by leveraging professional pricing and CPQ software has never been higher. Typically, those programs are split into multiple complex phases starting with a pricing concept, piloting software stacks and ultimately full roll-out often involving many different professional service partners taking many months if not years. In this talk, Accenture takes you on a journey elaborating on a much swifter “twice as fast” joint delivery model with PROS based on an agile combination of strategic pricing with swift implementation. This results in much shorter program duration realizing value much faster. Want to know more? Join the session and discover how to bring your pricing “twice as fast” into the new digital world!

About the Speakers

Marcus Demmelmair, Strategy Senior Manager, has more than eight years of pricing experience and specializes in Digital Monetization Strategy & Intelligent Pricing at Accenture. Based in Germany, Demmelmair consults clients across Europe on state-of-the-art pricing strategies leveraging latest technologies and data science methodologies.

Maria Chiara Forte, Managing Consulting Senior Manager, Accenture, helps business professionals assess, improve, and optimize B2B and B2C pricing strategy, execution and technologies. Prior to her career at Accenture, Chiara Forte has 19 years of experience in Italy and Belgium working with several companies in Oil & Gas, Paper, Gear boxes and Banking industries, with progressive responsibilities in Business Planning, Sales, Coordination, Pricing, Strategic Planning. She is based in Rome, Italy.

Full Transcript

Marcus Demmelmair: Hello and wonderful, welcome to our presentation, Twice as Fast. Our topic today is swift end to end pricing transformation from strategy to implementation in half the time you're used to. My name is Marcus Demmelmair. I'm a pricing senior manager at Accenture strategy, looking particularly on price strategies and how to transform strategies and bring them to life in end to end systems. And today here with my colleague Maria Chiara Forte....

Maria Chiara Forte: Hi, hello, everybody, and welcome to our session today. I am Maria Chiara Forte and I'm a management consulting senior manager, also working in Accenture. Welcome again!

Marcus Demmelmair: So you probably know the problem that you want to transform your pricing capabilities, moving into a new end to end landscape into a new pricing software pricing system, typically many of our clients, they start off with a pricing concept that is typically done in PowerPoint in Excel. And afterwards, they would then go for a software vendor assessment. And last but not least, for a software implementation latest at the point of the software implementation, many have found out that all the pricing great pricing concepts they have in PowerPoint and Excel won't work with the software. Therefore, we embarked and try to solve this problem, and I'll show you how.

Marcus Demmelmair: In the old world, we all had this price waterfall or pricing waterfall, where we defined the price strategy, did the vendor assessment, then the software implementation. This all takes a lot of time. It's a huge project, cost a lot of money. A lot of people involved. The effects of our price strategy takes years to trickle down. Once the software is in place and therefore in the new world, we embarked on a concept to do this at a much faster time, 50% faster within only a couple of months by doing the strategy and directly implementing once the strategic concepts are thought through directly bringing them to life in the software of choice. PROS is an excellent software exactly for this. So you save a lot of time on the vendor assessment on the software implementation as all the concepts, the first rule is the first thinking is directly piloted in the software and you use instead of any complex Excel tools, Excel modelling, you run it directly in the software. Do some tests and trials right away and avoid all these long and endless redundancies with PPT Excel vendor assessment and then software. Since you have it all in place in a trial set up and then iterating further and further and making the scope ever bigger. How this looks in detail will be explained by Chiara.

Maria Chiara Forte: Let's see now how to realize this twice as fast transformation. So first of all, I would like to start with the tip. Think big, start small and scale fast. To do so Accenture makes a difference with a delivery mode that is characterized by a phased approach in an agile combination. In particular, Accenture limited will help the client on identifying their business requirements, focusing on the core tasks and value generation, but also identification and elimination of inefficiencies. Also to minimize deployment risks and market disruptions. So this is driven by a business perspective and is not just involving tech capabilities to implement a PROS solution.

Maria Chiara Forte: Five phases are used not just in sequence, but as a combined, agile process in sprints to identify and implement sustainable solutions and create a new corporate mindset by implementing a new and iterative way of addressing efficiency enablement, but also organizational mindset and cultural change accepted and signed off by the business. I say iterative way since this approach is not a waterfall model. Testing is performed concurrently with development and we can always go back. Accenture assist in execution of change activities and resolution of relevant challenges throughout the entire process, not just in the hand.

Maria Chiara Forte: Starting from the left the first phase is about inside discovery during this phase. Accenture frames, key pricing challenges in the market. And assess our client pricing maturity framework. So we introduce data driven concept and intelligence pricing value proposition and prepare the initial business case and roadmap to pricing excellence, including cross tools stock selection. Based on my experience in previous projects, establishing improvement objectives with realistic metrics early in the project will help the Manage the expectations of leaders.

Maria Chiara Forte: Continuing the journey and ideation phase is needed to capture business requirements from pricing team, but also discuss data requirements and data availability and design the use cases to deliver the pricing recommendations. So investing first in diagnostic and analytic tools will identify the elements contributing to existing profits and costs and assist in identifying small and quick wins. As we saw several times in projects, early accomplishments can help in the development of internal credibility and trust in new systems, processes, methods and personnel. So Accenture will therefore begin with little wins to fund initiatives that will provide long term benefits. To co-create data design, then we need to ingest and analyze necessary data, but also configure an experimental protocol with clear rules and conditions defined as cases to validate how to deliver price recommendations and also running and measuring pilot results. The solution developed will be then integrated, easy to understand and conduct, concentrating on daily business and involving, of course, the affected business stakeholders with a combination of harmonization and automation. Of course, at this stage, since we are in an agile context, we can always go back to Inside discovery or ideation in case, we see that we need to reconsider or reassess the business requirements and continue with the co-creation of the design. On a traditional approach, this is not possible, so you might end up with a tool that is not completely fitting the business requirements just because the approach doesn't allow you to go back

Maria Chiara Forte: To scale and roll out the solution, then we need to incorporate learnings from the test phases and enrich data with external sources. Will the rollout plan with the engagement of relevant stakeholders and of course, a deep integration with your systems. What I saw on this phase from projects is that several factors will hamper the acceptance and usage of new systems and processes. For example, involves key sales or key sales, marketing, pricing and finance employees early and constantly across the development process, but also work closely with business leaders who are full of thinking and understand the project scope. Pilot user groups should be involved to help drive process improvements and highlight lessons learned and also refine the interface process and end to end navigation and application flow. Finally, incorporate new data elements into existing information management processes to minimize confusion during the change management and also to help maximize effectiveness. A train the trainer approach is normally recommended to demonstrate project support among end users provide regular informal pricing, product updates to peers, gather informal inputs, model use of new procedures and technology, but also participate in pricing activities like transition and testing.

Maria Chiara Forte: To ensure a continuous improvement as an ongoing exercise. Accenture is helping here to realize benefits through continuous test and learn maintenance of data analytics and applications. Continuous improvements of solution and extension also to cover additional functionalities will progress, governance, adoption and event behaviors of course. In a project, I'm involved now for example, we already had a pricing project in the past and we are now helping the client to further enhance their pricing capabilities given the new market conditions that they are facing. So let's remember, think big, start small and scale fast, so scale fast, but twice as fast as, of course, with the help of both Accenture and PROS. Accenture as a leading end to end consulting with a profound experience at the intersection of business and new technologies like artificial intelligence and advanced analytics. With more than 20 years of expertise and knowledge in the latest analytics methodologies and of course, market driven relevant tools with global delivery teams that are skilled and certified in market relevant solutions. And of course, with the recognized implementation excellence in several sectors. And this, together with PROS as a market share leader on pricing solutions with more than 30 years of experience, with an end to end coverage of all the pricing activities with end to end PROS Smart CPQ integrated with the PROS Price Optimization Technology that is granting advanced scientific and predictive pricing analytics and including B2B eCommerce functions. So thank you for having invited us at PROS Outperform 2021 today we are available for further questions or piece of advice, and you can find our contacts here on this line. Thank you very much.

Marcus Demmelmair: Thank you so much.