Effective CPQ engine, but output DocEngine is unstable.
October 15, 2012

Effective CPQ engine, but output DocEngine is unstable.

Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User

Software Version


Modules Used

  • Oracle CPQ
  • Product Configurator
  • Commerce
  • DocEngine

Overall Satisfaction with Oracle CPQ Cloud

  • Ability to incorporate business logic within the configurator, i.e. if you buy “x” product, must also include “y” product
  • Ability to trigger approvals based on business rules i.e. sales manager approval needed if discount exceeds 20%.
  • Ability to trigger approvals based revenue recognition rules i.e. finance approval needed if one module discounted more than the others, finance approval needed in previous contract within 6 months, etc.
  • Allowed us to have line-item pricing history.
  • The feature that distinguishes BigMachines from its competition is also the feature that needs the most improvement- DocEngine. DocEngine is the tool that creates RTF or PDF documents based on the results of configuration and discounting/approvals. Most competitors do not have an output option, only configuration. It is supposed to be dynamic, but is very unstable and the output can break. We still have to run contracts through legal to ensure that the system has not caused any errors. Part of the issue is stability, and part is administration UI.
  • Earlier versions required system administrators to understand a code called “BQL”. It was a system designed by engineers with little thought about non-technical system administrators. The latest releases of the product show much more investment and improvement in this area as they move towards clicks not code configuration.
  • Custom pricing/invoicing is difficult, mostly because it’s hard to build logic around “custom” in the system.
  • Better audit trail for maintaining Estimated Selling Price.
  • Line item visibility on pricing/discounts.
  • Faster time to create order and contract.
Our shortlist beyond Big Machines was:
1) Apptus – Their biggest downfall was their lack of responsiveness in the sales cycle. It made us very nervous about their ability to be responsive post sale.
2) Using the Salesforce.com Opportunity Products feature. Salesforce.com native functionality falls short in the following areas: a) Its ability to handle complex pricing bundles; b) no logic for workflow/approvals, e.g. defining which SKUs must go together; c )invoice structure; output to contract/proposal does not exist i.e. creation of Word or PDF file.

We picked BigMachines because of its ability to handle:
a) Integration with Salesforce.com
b) Product Configuration
c) Complex invoice structured
d) Bundled offers
e) Custom SOWs
e) Ability to use “Guided Selling”
f) Ability to generate document outputs (vs on screen pricing)
g)Ability to customize workflow/approvals
h) Mobile Approvals
i) Reporting
j) Future international capabilities
k) Potential for partners/resellers to use system
l) Potential to replace Sant/Qvidian
m) Company viability
BMI may be the “Cadillac” of CPQ systems. Make sure your org will get ROI.

BMI can also integrate with other CRM systems such as Oracle, SAP, Microsoft, etc.

Consider having at least 3 environments. Production, Development, Testing/QA

Don’t underestimate the end-user support needed. And QA required.

Using Oracle CPQ Cloud

75 - Approximately 75 users, some of them for “Approvals” only
• Sales – Account Executives and Account Managers
• Sales Management
• Services Management
• Finance
• Legal
2 - 1.5 Business Analysts in IT department to administer tool. (which is not enough)

2-3 End user support staff (part time responsibility)
  • Product configuration
  • Quoting
  • Contracts

Evaluating Oracle CPQ Cloud and Competitors

We did not have any Price Quote or contract tools (also known as CPQ: Configure-Price-Quote) other than spreadsheets.

We did and continue to use Sant/Qvidian for proposal content, but this did not include any pricing or logic around offers.

Oracle CPQ Cloud Implementation

It was a much more technical implementation than we thought. It involved much more code.

Future releases have made and will make administering the tool easier.

EDL consulting had one good developer, but when he was moved off, they were horrible to work with.

The BMI sales team does a “BOA” or a “Business Operation Assessment” which is extremely valuable, not only for them to scope an implementation and get more reach within the organization, but it is also a documentation of business process that most organizations don’t have. It highlights inefficiencies and allows for correction during implementation.

Having a dedicated team (in-house) for implementation is key.
  • Vendor implemented
  • Professional services company
BMI did the initial implementation. We then used the Chicago based consultant EDL Consulting for future phases.

Oracle CPQ Cloud Training

  • In-person training
We had train the trainer training which I did not attend so cannot rate.

Our staff was trained by BMI and subsequently trained end users.

Oracle CPQ Cloud Support

I have never contacted customer support.
Administrator support is available for a fee (hands-on administration in the tool)

Oracle CPQ Cloud Reliability

As an end-user, I don’t recall having issue with access.
Errors occur while processing orders seem to be generally administration or data errors vs. performance errors.

Integrating Oracle CPQ Cloud

  • Salesforce.com
  • Echosign
Salesforce.com - Single Sign On. It works very seamlessly.

Echosign - partial integration. It is possible to set-up signature fields in Big Machines output files to be EchoSign ready.

Relationship with Oracle

Negotiated an “out” based on proof of concept. Once implementation was complete we had the right to end contract if tool didn’t meet needs.