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3 Minute Read

What is CPQ for Manufacturing?

CPQ for manufacturing (CPQM) software helps companies sell and manufacture complex configurable products accurately and efficiently. CPQM applications include all the features of standard configure, price, quote (CPQ) tools but can also automatically create the documents and data required for manufacturing.

Challenges of selling configurable products

Manufacturers selling complex configurable products face a range of challenges:

  1. Salespeople must have strong product knowledge to confidently and accurately configure products that meet customer requirements
  2. Calculating pricing and discounts is complex and impacted by a wide variety of factors
  3. Preparing quotes and technical documentation manually is slow and inefficient
  4. Managing approvals and monitoring order progress is time-consuming

CPQM applications solve these challenges with tools to streamline sales processes and automatically create sales and manufacturing data.


Configure, price, quote (CPQ) applications enable users to accurately configure custom products, calculate pricing and discounts and automatically create sales documents. CPQ applications typically integrate with other business systems, such as CRM and ERP to ensure that data is always up to date.

Standard CPQ is often used for consumer products, but the demands of configuring complex configurable products that have custom manufacturing data require more than standard CPQ can deliver.

For manufacturers to truly benefit from CPQ, they need an even smarter solution.

Configure, price, quote for manufacturing (CPQM) applications include all the features of standard configure, price, quote (CPQ) tools but can also automatically create the documents and data required for manufacturing.

How does CPQ for manufacturing software work?

CPQM software captures the knowledge, information, and decisions sales and engineering teams use to configure, price, quote, and design products manually.

This information is usually captured using a combination of tabular data, calculations, logical expressions, business logic, legislation, and product requirements.

With the information captured and defined, the software can be set up to calculate values, make relevant decisions, perform actions, and automatically create sales and manufacturing data.

CPQM applications also typically integrate with other company systems such as CRM, ERP, MRP, PDM, PLM, CAM, and cloud services. Integrations between systems ensure that company data is integrated, always up-to-date, and accurate. Integration methods can include reading and writing to files, reading and writing to databases, sending and receiving data via web services, and bi-directional integration using APIs.

Features and benefits of CPQ for manufacturing

Product configuration and guided selling

Guided selling ensures that only valid permutations of a product can be configured. Sales teams, distributors, and even customers can configure products, confident their choice of options is valid and can be manufactured.

  • Help customers to understand product options and features
  • Guarantee configured products are valid and will not require changes when they move to manufacturing
  • Show relevant up-sell and cross-sell suggestions as products are configured
  • Enable new salespeople to accurately configure products with less training

3D visualization

3D visualization helps to communicate complex design details easily, enabling customers to understand product options as they configure. Not only does this improve the user experience, but it also reduces the likelihood of design revisions once the quote has been sent.

Pricing and discounts

Real-time pricing updates as product options are configured allowing customers to make informed decisions and choose options that balance their requirements and budget. Even for the most experienced salespeople, calculating pricing as options are configured is complex and requires constant reference to pricing spreadsheets and recalculation, and discounts only add another layer of complexity.

Sales documents

Quoting usually involves manually updating a template document with the options chosen. This can be a slow process that is susceptible to errors. CPQ tools use the configuration choices to automatically create quotes and sales documents, reducing tedious work and avoiding errors.

Documents and manufacturing data

CPQM solutions that integrate with CAD can automatically create technical documents and manufacturing data. Creating this data is typically time-consuming and is often a bottleneck in the sales process. Automatically creating technical documents for sales inquiries frees up valuable engineering resources that can be focused on high-value tasks with guaranteed ROI.


Workflow tools provide control over permissions, approval processes, and customer journeys.

  • Streamline approval processes and reduce wasted sales time
  • Manage order progress and automatically send status updates
  • Boost quality by adding approval steps and sign-off permissions for teams
  • Create documents and manufacturing data at the right time

DriveWorks CPQ for Manufacturing

DriveWorks CPQ for manufacturing software enables you to build and manage your own custom configure, price, quote solution that automatically generates documents and data for sales and manufacturing.