Running lean is the mantra at Spartan Systems, a Tennessee-based full stack agency. As COO, Gabe Weaver is fanatically focused on removing waste from their day to day operations. The Spartan team considers anything that adds cost but no value for clients as waste. And when they looked at their proposal process they saw an enormous amount of waste.
“We used DropBox and Word, our process caused unnecessary delays that prevented our team from completing and delivering proposals in a timely manner, and ultimately we spent more time fooling around with proposals and templates instead of putting the same mental and physical effort into solving our client’s problems.”
Gabe knew Spartan needed a better way to handle their proposal process, but he was very particular about wanting something that provided the right level of design and aesthetic customization while maintaining consistency from proposal to proposal. They also needed a solution that integrated smoothly with the agency’s other tools and services.
"Out of the gate, Proposify’s simple integration with Harvest was huge for us, as well as the basic accounting integrations. More than anything, the concept of themes, templates, reusable content sections, snippets, and the ability to view metrics to help us improve our proposals was too much to pass on. The icing on the cake: it was a better user experience than any of the other players in the space."
What really convinced Spartan that it was time to transition from the free trial to a paid account? Their clients.
"After we set up a few templates to play around with the service, we used it for a week or so for actual client proposals. Hearing things internally like, “I love Proposify...that only took me 15 minutes” and from prospective clients like, “Wow, you turned that around really fast. Thank you.” It was enough to seal the deal for us."
Since using Proposify, Gabe says Spartan’s sales process has matured rapidly. It made them realize they had to improve how they did business development so they created roles and accountabilities with specific tasks. They discovered that out of all the components of a project, which are different for each role, one of the few things all of them had in common was interacting with proposals and SOWs (statement of work). This realization made Proposify a critical piece in Spartan’s value creation process.
"We use Proposify in conjunction with RelateIQ, Xero, Float, and Harvest to manage revenue creation and cash flow. All of our potential revenue starts with Proposify. We set up Zapier to automate a lot of the steps of moving data between services based on triggers. We also set it all up to send us notifications in various Slack channels for each step of the process so we can drill right into a specific piece of it from the context of our natural, day-to-day workflow as a distributed company. All this without needing to check our email Inbox!"
Using Proposify has also improved Spartan’s close rate. The ability to turn proposals around quickly — what used to take them two weeks now can be completed in a couple of hours — means they are able to focus more on their clients and less on paperwork.
"That means we have more brain space and energy to solve the complex and fun challenges thrown our way - ultimately creating technology that helps our clients achieve their business objectives, grow their companies, and change the world one product or service at a time."