For many companies, the RFP (request for proposal) is the cornerstone to success. A compelling, informative, and professional document can land the contracts you need to thrive. But RFPs are often exhausting, repetitive processes that prevent your teams from completing other important work.
When Ray Meiring founded Qorus, he experienced first hand the very problem he set out to solve. Now Qorus offers proposal management software built on Microsoft365 and assisted by artificial intelligence.
In this episode of UpTech Report, Ray discusses the genesis of this solution and how he leveraged it toward the success of his own company.
More information: https://www.qorusdocs.com/
As CEO and co-Founder of Qorus Software, Ray Meiring leads an award-winning team of passionate problem solvers to create the absolute best customer experience possible.
Qorus helps law firm business development, marketing and bid teams reduce the time it takes to create accurate and secure proposals and RFPs. Ray is a frequent speaker, author and webinar host on a wide variety of topics including leadership, market strategy, law firm automation and the application of AI, and sales enablement for professional sales and bid teams.
DISCLAIMER: Below is an AI generated transcript. There could be a few typos but it should be at least 90% accurate. Watch video or listen to the podcast for the full experience!
Ray Meiring 0:00
That time that you’re spending in a sales process, right? Working on documents is time that you could be talking to the customer on a meeting during the presentation trying to work the deal in a, in a more meaningful way than answering questions in a questionnaire.
Alexander Ferguson 0:23
Welcome, everyone, I’m today I’m joined by Ray Meiring, who’s based in Seattle, Washington. He’s the CEO of Qorus Software. And that’s Qorus with a Q. Welcome, Ray.
Ray Meiring 0:34
Thank you very much, Alex, appreciate being on the show today.
Alexander Ferguson 0:37
Absolutely. Your product. It’s a proposal management software and built on the Microsoft platform. And anyone listening to this, if you’re a CRO, a sales manager, or other business leader of enterprise company, and you do a lot of RFPs, RF RFIs, RFQs, all the RF and pitches and presentations, this is probably an intriguing platform to use. Right? You started this eight years ago, what’s, what’s one thing if you go back eight years, what do you wish you had known eight years ago,
Ray Meiring 1:07
I wish that, quite honestly, I wish I had thought about moving quicker to the United States. So we started the business in South Africa. So I wish we had moved out here quicker to really work with this fantastic market that’s that’s in the US. You know, in terms of the product, it’s hard to see how the demand for those kind of RFP documents would just grow exponentially over time. So we probably would have pivoted into certain areas sooner. But I think if I look back at the ages, that’s that’s probably the one thing I would have done sooner.
Alexander Ferguson 1:41
on your site, you stated all around, the focus is moving deals, through the pipeline faster, enabling teams to deliver personalized proposals create content in minutes versus hours. What problem did you set out to solve with chorus? And how has that changed? Now over over the years?
Ray Meiring 1:59
Well, if you’ve ever responded to one of those RFP type documents, you will know what a painful experience that is. And we had plenty of that pain ourselves in the early days of running companies there. So that’s the problem that we wanted to solve is how do we make that process faster? How do we make it more efficient? How do we increase the wins from those RFP responses and proposals that we produce? When we started the business, we didn’t have access to technologies like natural language processing. So we did a lot of things like pattern matching, and that type of, of, of tech usage. But as time has moved on, we’ve been able to deploy those newer AI type technologies, NLP into that process. And so from a more manual, even though it’s automated, but you know, more human driven process to a more automated process, that’s the great evolution that we’ve seen.
Alexander Ferguson 2:53
So the big win for your platform is the assisted elements of it doing a lot of the grunt work of creating RFP, as far as it can go, am I getting
Ray Meiring 3:04
responding to the RFP really?
Alexander Ferguson 3:07
So walk me through good use case of one of your clients, even if you can give a name and just from beginning to end? How can they use your platform?
Ray Meiring 3:14
Well, imagine a receiving a questionnaire, you got 1000 questions in it, one of our clients genatech out of Canada has this exact problem. And now to answer every question in that immense questionnaire, someone would traditionally have to go and go to each question, find where you’ve answered in the past, or use their knowledge to go and fill out a response to that question. Now, for genatech, what we do is we identify the questions in the document, give them really smart search technology to go and find answers to those questions. And in some more recent features that we’ve given them actually just highlight the whole bunch of questions and said, where we answered these in the past go and fill it out for me. And the NLP the natural language processing kicks in there and just answers those questions rapidly into the into the document that with a high level of accuracy. I mean, there’s still humans involved to validate. But overall, you’ve got to you got a good response to that. And so for them, you know, five times faster. It’s a significant significant time saving,
Alexander Ferguson 4:25
in all my conversations and research into use cases of AI business is one of the most powerful uses for where AI is right now. Because it gets you often 80% Maybe 90%. There in consumer world. That’s not good enough. Like if if Siri isn’t responding properly 100% of time you’re annoyed at it from the business world, you can save 80% of your time, like getting up to that that’s powerful. It seems like this is a fantastic use case of that.
Ray Meiring 4:52
Absolutely. I mean that that time that you’re spending in a sales process, right? Working on documents, is time that you could be talking to the customer on a meeting during a presentation trying to work the deal in a in a more meaningful way than answering questions in a questionnaire. And so we’re able to take any percent of that problem, automate the questions, and then have that salesperson focus on the 20% of the questions that are high value questions, differentiated questions, personalized questions, they’re not only if we save them time, that they can put their energy into the questions and the parts of that RFP that are going to help them win the deal. What are
Alexander Ferguson 5:34
you most excited about right now roadmap wise, coming up that you are working on and that you can share
Ray Meiring 5:40
that whole concept of NLP and where it’s going really, really excites us and being able to improve and sharpen that up as the technology improves as we can can feed off that. That’s an exciting space that that we see continuing to grow. But you know, in addition to that, injecting those kind of capabilities into your Office application. As you mentioned, Microsoft Office is a big part of what we do. It’s how we differentiate, allowing you to work inside your Office application, having those NLP technologies right there. So you don’t have to be clicking buttons and running searches. The software is naturally offering you answers to questions introducing you to winning content, as you move in through that process in a familiar world of Microsoft Office, that excites us a lot as we move forward.
Alexander Ferguson 6:39
Where do you see the company in five years,
Ray Meiring 6:41
we’re going to be the de facto proposal management tool for sales teams. Many sales teams don’t realize that this problem today can be solved with software. They think it needs to be handled manually as we educate the market. So we believe that we’ll be will be part of that stack that everybody needs to solve the sales problem. And we’ll do that on a global basis.
Alexander Ferguson 7:06
ideal candidate for your platform, what size company? And what industries are you often in?
Ray Meiring 7:12
That would agree we’re dealing with companies that are responding to RFPs in a reasonable volume, and are typically spending a lot of time doing that there are certain complex questionnaires. So we would see ourselves in companies over 200 employees in the main that’s not a fixed rule. But that’s, that’s the general space. And then really two camps professional services, where you’re selling, you know, resource around a problem, you’re solving a particular problem, like legal as an example there. That is a key area for us. And then product companies, SAS product companies, electronic manufacturing, product companies, engineering companies, they typically have those problems to solve. And that’s where we see a lot of strength.
Alexander Ferguson 8:05
Where can people go to learn more, and what’s a good first step, they should take?
Ray Meiring 8:09
Websites one of the best places to go to learn more about Qorus. One of the other intriguing platforms to look at is to go on to a Jeetu crowd or Capterra. And to start there, or what’s really good about that, as you see our user reviews on those sites. And so you can see how people are using the software and how they’ve benefited from it. And if there’s any strengths and weaknesses that you should be aware of. The very next thing that we would normally do is schedule a demo with you take you through the experience of that talk to you about your challenges your problems on the platform, or in your business and then show you how the platform might be able to address some of those problems. And then we’re happy to kick into a trial as well if you if you want to experience
Alexander Ferguson 8:55
that concludes the audio version of this episode. To see the original and more visit our UpTech Report YouTube channel. If you know a tech company, we should interview you can nominate them at UpTechreport.com. Or if you just prefer to listen, make sure you subscribe to this series on Apple podcasts, Spotify or your favorite podcasting app.