16 Dec Quote Objects: Just how different are Apttus CPQ and Salesforce CPQ?
by Benjamin Apa, David Janke, Robert O’Donnell, and Katy Rudd
Trying to decide between Apttus CPQ and Salesforce CPQ? One of the biggest factors influencing your decision may be quote object functionality. In CPQ, that little Q makes a huge difference. Salesforce CPQ is a great choice for quote objects because it
– makes your job less stressful and more focused,
– is scalable yet simple, and
– offers you options and flexibility.
1. Streamlined and stress-free
With Salesforce CPQ, something you notice right away is that it works well with Lightning UI and has a native platform look and feel. So when you set up a quote object, everything feels comfortable and easy. Plus, Salesforce regulates updates, and the release upgrade cycle is streamlined.
With Apttus, clients often find that it is difficult to maintain frequent release upgrades, and the release upgrade cycle can be less streamlined.
2. Focused on Salesforce so you can focus on work
While Salesforce CPQ does use custom objects, its core objects are standard, leveraging standard Salesforce functionality. So sales teams and channel partners can use Price Book Entry, for example, to help them manage price entries.
Apttus CPQ, on the other hand, doesn’t use standard platform objects like Price Book Entry. Instead, it uses a custom orders object, assets objects, orders, order products, and contracts. For example, Apttus uses a Configuration Object to store iterations of the cart. This can be really helpful in some cases. In other cases, this customization causes headaches when trying to apply customizations to the quoting process. In our experience, we have found that applying data structures can be a challenge in certain use cases.
Salesforce keeps you focused by using standard objects for its core. And while custom objects in Apttus can be useful, all the data layers may make it difficult to focus on getting the job done.
3. A happy medium that makes life easier
In Apttus CPQ, there are a lot of data layers. The good news is that it is scalable and can accommodate extreme circumstances in data volume and complexity. But all the data layers can make it cumbersome to manage for some simple, middle-of-the-road exercises.
Salesforce CPQ finds a happy medium. It’s scalable enough to be flexible for outlying circumstances, but its data structure is simple enough that most quote objects are easy to maintain.
4. The right number of options
With Salesforce CPQ, data migration is easy because of the structure of data relationships. There aren’t too many data layers to traverse, which makes the process nice and streamlined.
In Apttus, on the other hand, the data layers go deep. We once worked on a case with Apttus CPQ where it was confusing just to traverse the data layers and UI, let alone figure out price dimensions and pricing layers for different use cases. The problem is that there are too many ways to do it, and each method has different (sometimes unanticipated) effects.
5. Flexibility with twin fields
Both Apttus CPQ and Salesforce CPQ utilize twin field functionality. Apttus’ twin field functionality is useful because it has specific fields that you can apply by product option or bundle line. But you can only use the functionality for selling terms and quantity, which means you don’t have the option to cascade down other key fields.
With Salesforce CPQ’s twin fields, you have a lot more flexibility. You’re not limited to bundles, which makes the twin field functionality easier and more useful to apply.
Another benefit of Salesforce CPQ’s twin fields? The freedom and confidence they give you when using amendments or renewals. Twin fields enable the original quote and configuration selections to still be selected, freeing the user from having to make any reconfiguration selections. This gives you confidence in the quote and configuration for new, amended, and renewed quotes.
If you’re trying to decide between Apttus CPQ and Salesforce CPQ, the difference in how each vendor handles quote objects makes Salesforce CPQ a great choice. With Simplus as a partner, you’ll find ease and success in the C, P, and Q of your configure-price-quote process.
Benjamin is a Simplus Senior Consultant focused on CPQ and with over 11 years of delivery experience, primarily in enterprise implementations. He’s performed in various roles across these implementations, including lead consultant, solution architect, and project manager. Ben’s focus on any given project is to achieve practical solutions that are driven by functional need but balanced by technical accord.
David is a Senior Delivery Manager here at Simplus. An experienced consultant with an accounting/finance background, David has over nine years of experience in both internal consulting operations as well as client-facing engagements. Additionally, David has deep experience across the Salesforce.com ecosystem, leading implementations in an external client-facing role across a range of industries.
Robert is a CPQ Architect here at Simplus. He is an experienced consultant with extensive expertise in CPQ, finance, CLM (Contract Lifecycle Management), Project / Program Management, and Change Management. He oversaw the largest CPQ implementations at Oracle (250k users for a full global rollout). This encompassed unique and highly customized use cases.
Katy is a Principal Consultant here at Simplus. She began her career on the business side, moved into a technologist role, then into solution sales and transformation. She works with companies of all sizes to bring operational improvement, transformative solutions, and, most importantly, empathy and compassion into business processes.