How to Streamline the Rebate Management Process for Pricing

October 12, 2021 Team Zilliant

Zilliant’s new Rebate Management solution simplifies the intricate process of creating, executing and analyzing off-invoice incentive programs. Flexible cloud-native software replaces spreadsheets and one-off agreements to streamline the process for the key stakeholders that are integral to a successful rebate program. In this blog series, we examine how the solution drives value for the pricing, finance, and sales teams within a B2B organization.

Pricing Managers Create and Administer Rebate Programs

Pricing managers have ownership over a critical piece of the rebate management process – creating and administering rebate programs. They must be intimately involved in defining payment tiers and calculating rebate thresholds. Additionally, pricing managers need to anticipate and project various outcomes, ensuring that deals meet profit goals whether rebates are achieved or not. Unfortunately, there are again common rebate management challenges pricing teams run into that hinder the rebate program effectiveness for B2B companies.  

Rebate Challenges for Pricing Teams

Limited Focus on Program Effectiveness and Strategy

There is a substantial amount of manual work that goes into managing rebate programs, including setting up and configuring rebate agreements, defining terms and incentives, determining included products and transactions types, and defining the scope of customers enrolled. Unfortunately, the amount of effort involved in executing a rebate program takes focus away from measuring program effectiveness and determining overall strategy. Typical approaches for measuring effectiveness are often lost in the shuffle, especially when there is overreliance on manual processes and complex spreadsheets.

Not Actively Monitoring & Managing Achievement Levels by Customer

As previously mentioned in the accounting and finance blog post in this series, correctly setting up rebates and ensuring optimal settings and payout thresholds is critical to rebate success. However, it’s very difficult to manage the accrual process and connect the dots in terms of incentives and qualifying transactions. Without rebate management software that can offer a high degree of visibility into established and new rebate programs, it is difficult to tell when customers are near a new achievement level . Not only is visibility into achievement levels needed, but pricing managers need a way to define the scope of payout thresholds and overall rebate program parameters.

How Rebate Management Software Benefits Pricing Managers

From the perspective of a pricing manager, an ideal rebate management system removes superfluous manual work and complexity to seamlessly accomplish tasks associated with managing rebate agreements and performing a customer profitability analysis.

When it comes to managing rebate agreements, rebate management software can enable a top-down approach that defines all aspects of a rebate program: the products and services included, eligibility requirements, program terms and conditions, sales thresholds, and payment tiers. Once set up, the system acts as the source of truth for rebate agreements that all stakeholders can refer back to and receive marching orders from. As rebate programs are defined, the ideal system can perform a customer profitability analysis, which includes both forward- and backward-looking analytics. Pricing managers can simulate the impact that proposed rebates will have prior to pushing them live. Once the program is in market, a detailed analysis can be run on pocket price and pocket margin performance.

Zilliant Price Manager™ Optimizes the Rebate Management Process

Zilliant Price Manager™ empowers users to define and publish rebate programs, while executing forward- and backward-looking analysis. These capabilities streamline and optimize rebate management for the pricing managers who are essential to the rebate process.

Within Price Manager, pricing teams can drill into the rebate manager workbook and see a list of all active and inactive rebate programs. For older rebate programs, users can gain valuable insight into the rebate program’s structure, see the accrual summary, and access a backward-looking analysis of rebate performance. Maybe most importantly, Price Manager offers visibility into where customers are in terms of achievement tiers and the total payout they received.

When it comes to active rebate programs, pricing teams gain complete control over program definition, including the ability to add and define rebate achievement tiers or thresholds. Price Manager also allows users to test changes to the rebate program before it’s published. This allows users to see how the program would have performed if it had occurred in the past and offers a projection of the overall payout provided to customers. Once the rebate program is published, it is readily available to all sales reps, with highly flexible configurations that define the program’s customer scope.

Conclusion

The new rebate management capabilities within Zilliant Price Manager eliminate complexity and streamline and optimize the rebate management process for pricing stakeholders. Pricing managers operate from a common console to make decisions that incentivize the right behavior from sellers and customers. The ability to scope and filter rebate criteria, and set thresholds and payment increments, allows teams to get to a level of granularity that spreadsheets cannot. The in-line analytics replace the guessing game – now rebate managers know how programs are performing, which completed programs need to be improved, where to set payment caps, when to get more or less aggressive, and much more.

Watch our on-demand webinar – Streamline Rebate Management Across Pricing, Sales and Finance – for in-depth product demos of Zilliant’s new rebate management capabilities now included in Zilliant Price Manager, Zilliant Deal Manager™ and Zilliant Campaign Manager™.

Contact Zilliant today to learn more about streamlining the rebate management process in your business. 

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How Better Rebate Management Benefits B2B Sales
How Better Rebate Management Benefits B2B Sales

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