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Revenue Lifecycle Management: Part 1 - Introduction

Updated: 4 days ago


Stratus Carta was lucky enough to take part in the Partner Learning Camp organized by Salesforce where we were taught about RLM and delved into its key features. In this blog post series, we will share our understanding from this learning experience concerning the common Industry CPQ and Order Management (OM) features, comparing them with some of the key features of RLM.


Salesforce has once again pushed the envelope in business technology with the Winter ‘23 release, introducing Revenue Lifecycle Management (RLM). Salesforce CPQ’s (formerly Steelbrick) and Industry CPQ’s (formerly Vlocity) best features are masterly combined into this new solution that comes as an all-in-one revenue lifecycle management tool.


This year at TrailblazerDX's True to the Core session (Watch it on Salesforce+ - start at 46:08), David Schmaier, Chief Product Officer at Salesforce, and former CEO of Vlocity, which was acquired by Salesforce in 2020 and compromises much of what is now Salesforce Industries, including OmniStudio, Industries CPQ, and Industries OM, announced RLM as the latest CPQ solution for Salesforce.


The whole process of revenue is streamlined and optimized by Revenue Lifecycle Management from initial quote to cash collection. Salesforce has developed a robust and scalable product that meets the complex needs of today’s businesses in various sectors by combining Salesforce CPQ’s powerful capabilities for CPQ (Configure, Price Quote) with Industry CPQ’s specialized functionalities.



Key Modules of Revenue Lifecycle Management


The new Revenue Lifecycle Management product consists of several interconnected modules, each tailored to handle specific aspects of the revenue lifecycle:


1.        Product Catalog Management (PCM) & Salesforce Pricing – RLM’s EPC


The centralized Product Catalog Management module is the heart of Salesforce's Revenue Lifecycle Management (RLM), playing a crucial role in connecting all other modules. Product Catalog Management covers products, their structure, attributes, and rules, whereas Salesforce Pricing covers the pricing and discounting options available. In the Industries CPQ world, this is analogous to the Enterprise Product Catalog (EPC). This module ensures that sales reps and product managers always have the most current product and pricing information at their fingertips, whether they're quoting a new deal or fulfilling an order. It is a single source of truth for all your product details, making it easier to configure, price, and quote products accurately.


Whenever there's an update to a product or its price, the change is reflected across the entire system. This means everyone involved in the sales and fulfillment process is always on the same page, reducing errors and saving time. The centralized catalog simplifies everything from creating quotes and contracts to managing orders, ensuring a smooth and efficient Quote-to-Cash process. It's like having a reliable hub that keeps everything running smoothly, helping your business respond quickly to customer needs and market changes.



2.        Product Configurator and Quote and Order Capture & Asset Lifecycle – RLM’s CPQ


Introducing the Configure Price Quote (CPQ) module, Salesforce has split the branding of this module into two distinct parts: Product Configurator and Quote and Order Capture & Asset Lifecycle.


The Product Configurator empowers users to tailor and configure products to precise specifications, ensuring that every customer's unique needs are met. Meanwhile, Quote and Order Capture & Asset Lifecycle cover the end-to-end process of Quote/Order configuration for both a net-new service (new provide) or from an Asset (also known as Amend, Renew, and Cancel (ARC) or MACD from Industries CPQ).



3.        Contract Lifecycle Management (CLM) – RLM’s CLM


Contract Lifecycle Management (CLM) is an integral part of Salesforce's Revenue Lifecycle Management (RLM) suite, designed to streamline the creation of contracts from quotes and orders. CLM boasts features such as a document template designer and a robust redlining tool. Additionally, Salesforce offers an Office 365 add-in that integrates the powerful functionality of Salesforce Contracts with the collaborative and redlining capabilities of Microsoft Word. In essence, this solution enables you to digitize and modernize your customers' legacy contract processes, ensuring a seamless and efficient contract journey.


4.        Dynamic Revenue Orchestration (DRO) – RLM’s OM


Dynamic Revenue Orchestration (DRO) is a powerful tool designed to streamline your revenue processes, consisting of two main components: Fulfillment Designer and Runtime.


Fulfillment Designer:

  • Utilize the Fulfillment Designer for a simple, intuitive, and visual orchestration design on a user-friendly canvas.

  • Leverage catalog-driven decomposition to support both commercial and technical products.

  • Benefit from reusable and extensible dynamic decomposition, ensuring scalable and adaptable design capabilities.


Runtime:

  • The runtime engine executes the design to deliver fast and accurate fulfillment with an integrated revenue cloud.

  • Manage fulfillment journeys for new orders as well as ARC/MACD orders seamlessly.

  • Implement inflight changes to orders, automatically updating the fulfillment plan in real-time for enhanced flexibility and precision.


Dynamic Revenue Orchestration combines these two components to offer an efficient, flexible, and scalable solution for modern revenue management.



5.        Salesforce Billing on Core (Future)


Salesforce Billing was previously a separate managed package that integrated with Salesforce CPQ (formerly Steelbrick), with some Industries CPQ (formerly Vlocity) projects, leveraging it as well. As part of RLM, Salesforce Billing will be moving into Salesforce Core, replacing managed objects with standard objects, and we assume better performance, scalability, and integration with RLM – let’s see if this comes to fruition.


Salesforce Billing allows businesses to effortlessly generate invoices using data from Salesforce or external systems, ensuring seamless payment processing with customers' preferred payment methods. It effectively manages customer escalations and exceptions through credit memos and refunds.


The system offers flexible billing for various products, accommodating diverse business needs and invoicing calculations. Automated scheduled batch invoicing and payments allow businesses to set specific times for generating invoices and collecting payments, enhancing efficiency and accuracy. This innovative solution is designed to meet the evolving billing requirements of modern enterprises.


Closing Thoughts


Revenue Lifecycle Management is the biggest innovation to hit the world of CPQ in the Salesforce ecosystem since the acquisition of Vlocity in 2020. Our first impressions are positive, and the uncanny similarities to Industries CPQ should make mastering RLM much faster for those with an Industries CPQ background.. We look forward to deep diving with you into the Product Catalog Management (PCM) module in our next post.

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